Art and Design


At St John’s, we believe that every child is entitled to an art, craft and design education that allows them to develop and express their individuality, imagination and interests. It is essential that children are given the opportunity to communicate their own ideas in their own works of art using the knowledge and skills they have acquired through carefully constructed lessons that aim to engage, challenge, inspire and motivate. We have recognised the need to ensure that children acquire a strong foundation in the areas of drawing, painting and sculpture. By providing a high quality education that puts these areas at the heart of the learning, we will ensure that children develop the knowledge, skills and confidence to express their ideas in high quality pieces of work that they can feel proud of. Furthermore, it is important that children learn about the history and future of art; how it has shaped and reflected our culture and nation, and how it will continue to do so. Children will become aware of how they fit into this and the part they can play in contributing to the creativity and culture of our nation in the future.

Within the classroom, teachers will create a positive attitude to art, craft and design; encouraging imagination, celebrating individuality and reinforcing high expectations with regards to the belief that every child is capable of achieving the highest standards in their artwork. Art will be taught in a 1-2 week block every other term to allow time for children to delve into their art learning with a greater focus and enable the opportunity to work at a greater depth. It will provide longer blocks of time devoted to researching artists and artwork, developing and exploring own ideas, and producing final pieces of artwork. Planning for each of the 3 terms that art is studied will be devoted to the area of drawing, painting or sculpture. This cycle will be revisited the following year to allow for the building and development of skills in each area for each year group with a different focus artist, craftsperson or designer.

All teachers will:

  • Revisit previous art learning on a regular basis to enable the retention of knowledge, skills and vocabulary which will subsequently allow children to confidently build on this as they progress through the school. This may occur in any subject where the learning is relevant.
  • Plan to build on children’s existing knowledge and skills through the provision of engaging lessons with: - direct teaching of new knowledge and vocabulary - modelling of new skills and techniques - questioning and discussion to challenge and inspire further ideas and creativity - time to practice and refine existing and new skills and techniques - opportunities to explore local, national and international artists, craftspeople and designers - use of high quality resources to support learning
  • Encourage and support children to: - be imaginative and individual - plan, develop and produce their own piece of artwork - select appropriate tools and equipment, and be able to use them accurately and safely - see how art shapes and reflects our culture and nation, and how they can contribute to the future - discuss, compare and express opinions on their own work and that of artists, craftspeople and designers they have studied
  • Regularly assess children’s knowledge and skills through observation, discussion and outcomes. Identification of any gaps in learning will be swiftly targeted and addressed in order to stop any child falling behind.

Children are assessed through observation and discussion of not only the skills and techniques they are using, but also the processes they are working through as they produce their work. Outcomes are assessed for evidence of skills and techniques used at an age appropriate level. These are monitored and recorded on a central system so that teachers can look for progression between years.

Design & Technology 

Here at St John’s we aim to provide a design and technology curriculum that is inclusive and engaging for every child. As a school, we recognise the importance of enabling the future generation to understand the impact of design and technology in our rapid and ever changing world. We want to help our children grow and become resourceful, innovative and enterprising, where they build confidence to take risks and become problem solvers. All the children in our school are exposed to a wide range of media, including textiles, woodwork and food.

Each child will be provided with opportunities to:

  • Be creative and use their imagination
  • Develop their technical vocabulary through discussion
  • Allowing them to talk about how things work
  • Elaborate on their understanding by making prototypes and products for a variety of users.
  • Select appropriate tools and resources, ensuring safety guidelines are followed.
  • Evaluate their products and allow for constructive criticism.
  • Learn the importance of nutrition and how to make balanced healthy food dishes.
  • Share their satisfaction and delight with their finished products.

To ensure our children are given the very best teaching and learning experience at St John’s, we have implemented a curriculum that is progressive across the whole school. The children are taught in a 2 week block, every other term, as we believe this gives the children the chance to immerse themselves fully into a project and continue a flow of learning, helping them to embed knowledge, skills and vocabulary.

We also believe in enhancing the curriculum by:

  • Delivering projects that have a clear structure. All of our children will undertake a textile topic, a food/drink topic and a construction topic.
  • Delivering projects that follow a clear design process of design, make and evaluate.
  • Ensuring a range of skills are taught and children are aware of health and safety regulations related to the tasks undertaken.
  • Underpinning cross-curricular links and allowing children to learn life skills and apply these skills in a ‘hands on’ way.
  • Making sure children explore the design process, evaluating their work and ensuring it is of the highest quality. All projects are assessed against the curriculum objectives as well as children self-evaluating their work and giving constructive criticism to their peers.
  • Implementing independent and collaborative learning. Independent learning helps children to solve problems and think as an individual therefore taking ownership and leading their own learning. Collaborative learning enables the children work as part of a team through supporting and helping one another towards reaching an end goal.

We are a school that strives to prepare children for our rapidly changing world and through the study of design and technology children are able to combine their practical skills with the understanding of social and environmental issues.

We measure impact through:

  • Assessing children’s understanding prior to teaching the unit.
  • Observations and photos of practical learning.
  • Summative assessment of pupil discussions about their learning.
  • Assessing outcomes that match the skills and knowledge for appropriate age groups.
  • Pupil voice – talking to pupils about their learning.


Art & Design Date  
Art and Design Technology (2 year cycle) 05th Oct 2023 Download