Art and Design Curriculum 


At Crook Primary School, art and design is valued as a subject which gives pupils the ability to appreciate and interpret that which they observe, to communicate what they think and feel, and to make what they can imagine and invent. Art and design teaching aims to instil an appreciation and enjoyment of the visual arts, and pupils of all abilities are involved in learning the necessary skills needed to make progression in their knowledge and understanding as well as to develop their individual competence in controlling materials and tools. Our curriculum aims to strike a careful balance between exploration and demonstration with an emphasis on personalisation, encouraging pupils to explore their own individual creative expression as well as to increase critical awareness of the role and purpose of art and design in the wider world.

We aim to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for art and design whilst also providing a broad and balanced curriculum which inspires and motivates all pupils and ensures the progressive development of knowledge and skills. The focus in art and design lessons and related enrichment activities is on developing pupils’ skills, knowledge and understanding specific to the subject, as well as increasing pupils’ confidence and creativity through a wide repertoire of teaching approaches. Our curriculum aims to help pupils to not only grow in confidence and understanding, but also aims to promote self-directed learning through a carefully planned balance between exploration and demonstration. Teaching staff use assessment methods and subsequent planning to follow the pupils' interests to ensure that learning is engaging, broad and balanced. Through our ‘connected curriculum’ approach, we encourage pupils to make connections between their learning across topics, building upon key critical thinking approaches of comparison, appraisal and analysis, whilst also exposing pupils to a substantial breadth of artists, art and design skills and knowledge of art and design within history and its impact on the world.  This approach encourages pupils to develop their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development through linking with topics which embrace their personal interests and experiences.

Teaching of art and design at Crook Primary is structured so that pupils have sufficient time to be able to gain a deep and thorough understanding of how they can build upon and implement their learning from lesson to lesson.


The aims of teaching art and design in our school are as follows:

  •   To engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works.
  •   To guide pupils to think critically about creative works and to develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design; this includes knowledge of how art and design reflect and shape our national and global history, and how art and design contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.
  •   To empower pupils to produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences through use of sketchbooks.
  •   To allow pupils to explore processes by manipulating materials, their developing understanding of which can then be applied to further concepts.
  •   To teach pupils to become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art and design techniques, using approaches employed by artists, craft makers and designers to improve their skills.
  •   To direct pupils to appraise and evaluate creative works using the language of art and design.
  •   To ensure that pupils know about great artists and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.
  •   To provide further enrichment activities related to art and design, such as making connections with local artists, and providing interactions with art in the wider community and area through school visits, both in person and virtually where necessary.



To ensure high standards of teaching and learning at Crook Primary, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. Art and design is planned to create strong links with related subjects and to inspire pupils based on their interests; therefore, art and design is taught as an integrated block within an overarching termly topic. This provides pupils with contextual insight and the ability to place the subject of art and design into a wider historical and geographical real-world perspective.

Our curriculum is based upon the 2014 Primary National Curriculum in England, which provides a broad framework and outlines the knowledge and skills taught in each Key Stage. Teaching staff plan for lessons using the whole school art and design overview alongside our progression of knowledge and skills document, ensuring inclusivity and development of pupils of all abilities.

Throughout their time in school, pupils are exposed to a wide breadth of art styles, movements and key artists through a carefully crafted curriculum. Each stage of pupils’ development in art and design throughout their time at Crook Primary School incorporates the study of both modern and more traditional artists and art styles; as such, pupils are able to both gain a wide knowledge of the history of art and the timeline of traditional artists as well as be inspired by modern artists that may be more relevant to their own individual interests.

The structure of the teaching of art and design within the overall curriculum allows for pupils to have sufficient time to be able to deeply develop art and design skills, closely following real approaches taken by artists, craft makers and designers. Art and design is embedded within termly topics in blocks, giving pupils the time and opportunity to develop their skills in a thorough way, with learning clearly built upon from lesson to lesson. Teaching of art and design through fortnightly blocks also allows pupils to subsequently share their learning with the entire school in the culmination of each art and design topic through our school art gallery.

At Crook Primary School, we provide a variety of opportunities for art and design learning inside and outside the classroom, to make sure that the exciting and ever-changing world of art, craft and design is reflected in and beyond the classroom. Connections across the curriculum are made apparent to pupils as they celebrate their learning in art and design through sharing their creative processes and finished work in our school art gallery. This sharing of work includes opportunities for parents to engage with the school and to join in on their children’s learning: parents are invited on a termly basis to interact with the regularly-updated school art gallery, either through open-school visits after lifting of restrictions, or through virtual tours of the gallery using already well-established communicative links such as the school’s social media pages and website.

Further parental engagement is developed through yearly art challenges which inspire and motivate pupils to share their learning at home, and to take initiative by setting and taking part in creative challenges related to art and design skills with their parents. This provides opportunities for pupils to nurture their interest and talent in their leisure time.


Key Stage 1






Artist Brief: ‘Into the woods’

Paint a scene/character/setting from a traditional tale.

Skills focus: Painting

Focus Artist: Famous illustrators

Artist Brief: ‘Weird and wonderful wildlife’

Design an imagined animal based observational drawings of different animals.  Create a 3D sculpture of your animal.

Skills focus: Drawing (charcoal) 3D art (sculpture)

Focus Artist: Michelle Reader

Artist Brief: ‘Nature’s Patterns’

Skills focus: Printmaking (plasticine) with 3D materials

Focus Artist: Georgia O'Keeffe


Artist Brief: ‘The Queen’s Head’

Explore coin design through observational drawing and monoprinting. Design a newly minted coin.

Skills focus: Printmaking (mono printing) 

Focus Artist: Pablo Picasso

Artist Brief: ‘Native American headdress’ Create a 3D Native American profile with headdress.

Skills focus: Drawing (pencil, pastel) and 3D art (clay)

Focus Artist: John Ruskin - ‘peacock feather’

Artist Brief: ‘City on Fire’

Create a layered painting which depicts a city on fire.

Skills Focus: Painting (poster)

Focus Artist: Vincent Van Gogh


Lower Key Stage 2






Artist Brief: ‘Antarctic Landscapes’

Experiment with different painting techniques and create a winter landscape scene.

Skills Focus: Painting (acrylic, watercolour)

Focus Artist: Claude Monet - Impressionism, Emma Stibbon

Artist Brief: ‘Dangers of the rainforest’ Create rainforest images in the style of Henri Rousseau.. Collaging of layers could be used to build up the layers of vegetation in the rainforest.

Skills focus: Drawing (pencil, pastel) and painting (poster)

Focus Artist: Henri Rousseau    

Artist Brief: ‘Printing Press’ 

Explore the invention of the printing press through experimentation with printmaking techniques to represent typography.     

Skills Focus: Drawing (pen, pencil) and printmaking (mono- and relief printing)

Focus Artist: Andy Warhol


Artist Brief: ‘Drawing with scissors’ Explore colour blocking and comparisons that can be drawn to Roman mosaics. Experiment with using scissors to cut out and layer shapes to build up a piece of art. 

Skills focus:

Focus Artist: Henri Matisse

Artist Brief: 

Skills focus: Digital media and 3D art/Sculpture (natural materials)

Focus Artist: Andy Goldsworthy - Land Art

Artist Brief: ‘African Patterns’

Design and create a piece of patterned fabric inspired by African patterns.

Skills focus: Textiles

Focus Artist: African


Upper Key Stage 2






Artist Brief: ‘Celestial Bodies’ 

Create a 3D modroc sculpture over an armature to add to a mobile depicting celestial bodies or objects that could be found in space (rocket, crescent moon, planet, shooting star, nebula etc)

Skills focus: 3D Art/Sculpture (recycled/man made materials and modroc) and painting (acrylic)

Focus Artist: Alexander Calder - Kinetic Art

Artist Brief: ‘Transglobe Travel’

Create a travel poster for a holiday company. Paint a landscape scene of one of the places that Ranulph Fiennes travelled to, then use digital media to add text to your travel poster.

Skills focus: Painting or digital media

Focus Artist:  A range of travel poster artists - Fred Ludekens, Stan Galli, Frank Newbould, Roger Broders, Georges Dorival etc

Artist Brief: ‘Show me what you see’ Create drawings inspired by Viking architecture, then create sculptures with personality inspired by these drawings using natural materials.

Skills focus: Drawing (charcoal and pencil) and sculpture (natural materials)

Focus Artist: David Nash - Land Art

How does David Nash develop sculptures from drawings? How does he draw to represent line, pattern and texture?


Artist Brief: ‘Who Am I?’ 

Explore and represent your different personas through self-portraiture

Skills focus: Painting (poster, watercolour, acrylic)

Focus Artist: Frieda Kahlo - Surrealism

Artist Brief: ‘A New Perspective’ 

Explore representing objects/ buildings/landscapes from different and unusual perspectives, experimenting with the contrast between different perspectives.

Skills focus: Drawing (mixed media) 

Focus Artist: Susan Crile and Jane Frank

Artist Brief: ‘Fruit Pinch Pot’ 

Create a 3D clay sculpture inspired by fruit.

Skills focus: 3D Art/Sculpture (clay) and painting (acrylic)

Focus Artist: Clarice Cliff - Art Deco



Within art and design, Crook Primary aims to stimulate the imagination and creativity of pupils as well as to promote their careful observation and appreciation of the world around us. Our art and design curriculum is of high quality, encourages pupil individuality and personal expression, and progression of skills and understanding is clearly planned for. Discrete teaching of specific art and design terminology is planned using the progression of skills map and incorporated into units of work to ensure that all pupils are able to articulate well-developed responses to creative works.

The impact of our art and design curriculum is measured through the following methods:

  •   Ongoing formative assessment in which pupils are guided to meaningfully reflect about their own and others’ design processes, as well as which helps pupils to develop their ideas, refine their skills and deepen their understanding.
  •   Summative assessment of pupil evaluations, focusing on identifying how pupils can further develop their ideas, refine their skills and deepen their understanding.
  •   Discussions with pupils about their learning and enjoyment of their lessons (pupil voice).
  •   Whole school pupil appraisal and celebration of their own and other’s work through ‘Art Gallery’ days.
  •   Moderation staff meetings wherein pupil’s sketchbooks are scrutinised in order to encourage meaningful and reflective dialogue between teaching staff.
  • Assessment of pupils’ progression of skills throughout a topic which teaching staff use to inform further planning and delivery of art and design


Progression of Skills

  • Art Progression of Skills
    Art Progression of Skills