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Willow Bank Junior School

Art & Design



At Willow Bank Junior School, we place high value on the teaching of Art and Design as part of our broad and balanced curriculum.  Art and design embody some of the greatest forms of human creativity and children should be free to express themselves through art as well as learning about a rich culture of art and design, both current and historic. Children are encouraged to use a wide range of different media to creatively express their interests, thoughts and emotions.  


High quality teaching and learning in art and design should be engaging, inspirational and challenging. Children should be equipped with skills and knowledge that allow them to experiment, invent and create their own masterpieces. By immersing children in a range of art and artists, we want them to develop their critical thinking skills, their understanding of different styles and techniques used as well as being aware of how art and design can both reflect and shape our history and culture.  


We recognise that Art is a great starting point for children to develop language and communication between their peers, with adults in school and those at home, therefore we encourage our children to express themselves through art and design. 




Following the National Curriculum, and using the Chris Quigley Essentials Curriculum, the children are taught to evaluate and analyse artwork, develop a broad range of skills that enable them to become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpting and their overall creativity. Children will experience art and design from across the world, celebrating artists and cultures from differing global perspectives and historical contexts. Art is taught discretely in blocks and also, when relevant, through other subjects – particularly RE and History.


Our Art curriculum is underpinned by three threshold concepts:


  • Develop ideas
  • Master techniques
  • Take inspiration from the greats


The goals that pupils should reach in Design Technology are divided into two ‘milestones’ that each spread over a two-year period. Each milestone builds upon the previous one and pupils revisit these threshold concepts with spaced repetition to promote effective learning. Interleaving helps pupils to discriminate between topics and aids long-term retention. In working this way, children have opportunities for frequent and regular retrieval of previously learned content.


The teaching of art is progressive, allowing children to develop and build upon their skills and knowledge, knowing more and remembering more about the world of art and design. We encourage a love of Art throughout their journey through school and we celebrate the children’s art and design, showcasing their talents throughout the school building and encouraging a lifelong appreciation of creativity, both their own and of others. 



Art contributes to children’s personal development in creativity, independence, judgement and self-reflection. It encourages children to develop a sense of ownership over their work and reflect on their experiences through evaluating their progress and development. Children’s art outcomes are proudly displayed around the school and in the community to showcase learning outcomes. Children show a willingness to participate in a range of artistic opportunities and respond well to this. Children at Willow Bank Junior School can:


· Talk confidently about a range of artists and their experiences in art and design.

· Work confidently and collaboratively with their peers

· Use their creativity to express themselves through a range of media

· Transfer these skills to prepare them for future work life.


We measure the impact of our Art and Design curriculum through monitoring work, listening to the children’s attitudes  through pupil voice, through regular staff discussion, by taking learning walks and  book looks.