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Art & Design

‘Academic Excellence and Intellectual Curiosity for all’


At Hackney New Primary, art is valued as an integral part of our school curriculum. Our weekly lessons are a dedicated time and space for all students to access creative experiences, broadening both their knowledge and skills and giving rise to innovative thinking. We provide first-hand creative experiences accessing visual and fine art at a wider level with an  aim to develop artistic imagination and expand cultural capital, instilling an appreciation for the arts and igniting aspiration in our future artists as they gain mastery over their creative skillset.  

Academic excellence in art is the mastery of skills and techniques. HNPS students will leave our school having learnt art through a progressive curriculum of art and design skills not only through discrete sessions, but in supporting students in learning how to make their own creative choices and decisions, so that  their art outcomes, whilst still being knowledge-rich, are unique to each pupil. 

Here at HNPS we instil Self-belief in all of our students by teaching them the importance of practise and progress rather than the success of a single outcome. It is the journey taken that we hold in high regard. We offer regular opportunities for self and peer evaluations to encourage our students to flourish. 

Intellectual curiosity in art is the development of creative and critical thinking. By the end of Key Stage two our pupils will leave HNPS being able to form an opinion, critique and appreciate their own as well as renowned works of art. They will expand their cultural capital and be able to comment on a range of artists, techniques and media and begin to understand where these forms originated and how they have been shaped over time. 

Responsibility to the natural world is an important theme explored and actively encouraged throughout our curriculum. We encourage our students to take a closer look at the environment through observational drawing and to consider the impact of the materials they use thinking about the importance of sustainability, whether it be creating sculptures from natural materials in Outdoor Learning or repurposing found materials within their work.


Art Lessons are always practical in nature and encourage experimental and exploratory learning throughout the whole school, as we implement a curriculum which is progressive and has carefully considered development of skills from Reception through to Year 6, based on the National Curriculum. Lessons take place on a weekly basis and each term presents a new area of art to focus on, dedicated to developing proficiency in drawing, printing, painting, collage, sculpture and mixed media. Children will gain a clear understanding of how to use the seven elements of art using line, shape, space, form, colour, tone and texture as they work with a variety of materials and mediums and control tools with increasing confidence and become accomplished in a wide range of techniques and processes. As Art and DT alternate on a half term basis, our weekly Outdoor Learning sessions and educational visits provide an opportunity to re-visit and continue developing taught skills.

Throughout their time at HNPS, our students will continue to expand their visual library as they are exposed to the works of a diverse array of artists that have been carefully selected to reflect our school community. Our curriculum celebrates artists of all cultural and geographic backgrounds featuring works of BAME and LGBTQ+ artists with multi-ethnic and multicultural experiences for children, so that our pupils see themselves reflected in the art and design curriculum. All children are provided with visual aids to support the embedding of key vocabulary needed to access and articulate their thoughts and ideas. Children will be taught to identify stylistic features of the artists in focus work and through analysis are encouraged to form and articulate their opinions about compositions, as well as evaluating their own work.
Through explicit modelling of skill using ‘I do, we do, you do’ known as the gradual release of responsibility model, we enable all learners including our SEND children to feel successful as skills are clearly broken down into smaller instructions. If a child is finding a particular aspect challenging they are provided with the opportunity for additional peer and adult modelling and time to practise, to ensure skills are consolidated. For children that join us midphase, teachers will assess children and pre-teach necessary skills or knowledge to minimise potential learning gaps.


Through the use of high quality sketchbooks from Year 1 through to Year 6, children will be able to record their artistic journey as they master the approaches of research, develop, reflect and resolve within their work, resulting in high quality outcomes. Children will demonstrate  good knowledge of core skills and be able to confidently talk about and describe the key principles in art: line, tone, texture, shape, form, space, pattern, colour, composition, proportion and perspective and recall facts about their key artist in focus. Each year children will revisit and build on from the previous years key knowledge and skills supported by effective lesson sequencing and progression, allowing them to flourish in both art and design and feel success in their ever improving artistry. Artwork is exhibited around the school and showcased within classroom displays celebrating both the effort and creativity of our budding artists, as well as providing the opportunity to feel like an established artist in a gallery. 

Pupil’s skills and knowledge are formatively assessed by the class teacher throughout the learning process using a bespoke assessment tool as a means of summative assessment for each student, which informs the subject lead of any further areas for curriculum development, pupil support and/or training requirements for staff. Teachers can also refer back to the detailed skills progression grid to assess and provide students with individualised next steps to ensure all children make their end of year targets.

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