Teaching Staff and Responsibilities

Katie Withyman: Subject Leader for Art

Laurie Ellis: Teacher of Art

Jackie Harman: Art Technician

KS3 (Years 7-9)

How do we organise teaching groups at KS3?

At KS3, classes are taught in form groups (classes of 30-32) which are all mixed ability.


What are our aims at KS3?

  • To enjoy art and to develop a life-long appreciation.
  • To experience a broad range of approaches mediums and approaches to the subject.
  • They should be able to apply perspective devices to work.
  • Pupils should know about a variety of artists historical, cultural and contemporary.
  • Have knowledge of the history of art, craft, design and architecture, periods, styles and major movements from ancient times to the present day.
  • Pupils should be able to use different drawing techniques to increase the objectivity of their work.
  • Pupils should be able to make observational -drawings applying the formal elements of shape, form, line, tone, texture with a good level of accuracy.
  • They should be able to apply paint with a good level of skill.
  • They should be able to experiment with a range of materials and techniques.
  • They should be able to apply a variety of materials with proficiency.
  • Pupils should be able to apply the formal elements of line, shape, form, tone, texture, pattern, colour and composition with accuracy and skill.
  • They should be able to develop well-reasoned ideas and opinions about the artist’s work and their own.
  • To understand that art can be fundamental in communicating a range of important ideas.
  • Pupils to develop a broad range of technical vocabulary.
  • To analyse their work and that of artists to help them develop a deeper understanding of artistic meaning and visual language in their work and others.


How does this subject develop over KS3?

  • In year 7, pupils will acquire a foundation of artistic skill, theoretical knowledge and creativity. They will practice observational drawing, colour mixing, painting and working with clay.  Within this, they will explore techniques, experimentation and evaluation to help focus reason and meaning. They will learn about historical and contemporary movements and artists.
  • In year 8, to refine observational skills further we revisit, practice and develop work with greater complexity and challenge. Pupils will experiment with a broadening range of materials, practice and expand their technical painting skills. They will begin to analyse a movement of art and develop an in-depth theoretical understanding of artists and their work. They start to look at industry-based jobs and develop work based around these which allows pupils to explore creativity and meaning further.
  • In year 9 pupils also revisit and practice skills of observation, painting and experimentation with a greater focus on technicality and proficiency. Materials and processes with greater complexity are introduced.  Pupils explore the ideas of meaning, expression historical context, symbolism, identity and emotion conveyed in art.


What will my daughter learn at KS3?

Year 7

  • Drawing: Observational drawing techniques, using sketching pencils, tone, shading, mark-making techniques.
  • Colour Theory: Colour groups (primary, secondary, tertiary, monochromatic), using the colour wheel. How to paint with control.
  • Pattern: Types of pattern, studying the pattern work and paintings of artist Gustav Klimt, researching artists.
  • Independent learning project: Researching artists, learning about movements and styles, generating meaningful responses to research using clay.
  • Perspective: One point and two-point perspective.


Year 8

  • Still life: Looking at the different approaches to the historical genre of still life. Techniques for increase objectivity of drawing, experimenting with pastel, pen and surface, exploring composition.
  • Sewing: making felt Christmas decorations, straight stitch, blanket stitch and embellishing with decorations.
  • Cubism: An in-depth look at analytical Cubism and synthetic Cubism. Pupils explore the work of Picasso, Braques and David Hockney to produce personal photography and paintings in response.
  • Negative space: Increasing objective drawing by learning to see negative space, not an illustration, investigative learning through experimentation with collage and frottage.


Year 9

  • Ready-Mades: exploring the idea of making art with found objects. Looking at the work of Sarah Graham, using acrylic paints, gridding to increase objectivity.
  • Lino printing: Looking at the colour reductive process to make Christmas cards or wrapping paper
  • Portraiture: learning to draw facial features and proportion the face.
  • Frida Kahlo: Learning about the artist’s self-reflective approach to narrative in her art, pupils make their own self- reflective painted responses.


KS4/GCSE (Years 10-11)

How do we organise teaching groups at KS4?

We have two teaching groups that are both mixed ability (classes of 15-23). Each has a single teacher that will teach them in year 10 and year 11.


Which GCSE specification do we prepare pupils for?

We follow the EDEXCEL Exam Board. We complete the ‘Fine Art’ (1FA0) specification of the Art and Design Suite.  You can find more information here at :


What will my daughter learn at KS4?

  • Personal portfolio (worth 60 %) (year 10 and year 11)
  • Pupils will develop two sketchbooks with school set themes. Each sketchbook will result in final out of book pieces.  Pupils should also produce some out of book preparatory pieces.
  • Externally set assignment (worth 40%) (Year 11)
  • Pupils will receive an early release paper, with an exam board set theme. They will develop a sketchbook in response to the theme and then complete a final response in examination conditions over a sustained period of 10 hours.


Are there any websites that will support my daughter’s learning?


KS5/A Level (Y12-13)

How do we organise teaching groups at KS5?

At KS5, classes are taught in option groups (classes of 7-16) which are all mixed ability.


Which A Level specification do we prepare pupils for?

OCR A Level Fine Art (H601).  Here is a link to the specification for more detailed information:


What will my daughter learn at KS5?

Year 12

  • In the first term, students are taught a range of sophisticated approaches to art, including etching, life drawing, and technical approaches to still life, perspective and theory and art history.
  • After this, pupils begin to develop a personal portfolio (60%) response with a self-selected theme.
  • The have to complete an extended piece of writing based on a related art history-based theme to their personal investigation (1000 words).


Year 13

  • Students complete their work for their personal investigation with a final response as well as larger supporting work outside of their portfolio.
  • They produce a visual outcome for their written related study.
  • Externally set assignment (40%) which is an early release paper with an exam board set theme.
  • Student have a shorter period of time to produce a sketchbook of preparatory work.
  • The practical outcome to the sketchbook work is produced in examination conditions over 15 hours.


Are there any websites that will support my daughter’s learning?