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St James

Primary School

Where children shoot for the stars and shine


Art and Design Curriculum Statement


Art and Design Intent

At St James Primary School, we believe in giving every child a well-balanced and enjoyable curriculum which aims to engage, inspire, and challenge. Art, craft and design embodies some of the highest forms of human creativity and at St James, we strive to give pupils plenty of opportunities to search and develop their own ideas through a safe and encouraging environment.

At St James Primary School, we aim to offer opportunities for children to

  • Foster an understanding and enjoyment of art, craft and design.
  • Experience a broad and balanced range of art activities and show progression within these experiences.
  • Show development of ideas and their own skills through the use of a sketchbook.
  • Create art on a large scale and evidence this in an A3 zipper folder.
  • Develop their ability to observe, investigate, respond to and record the world around them through a growing variety of forms and media.
  • Develop use of a range of tools, media and processes.
  • Develop an understanding of the work of artists, crafts people and designers and apply this knowledge to their own work.
  • Provide opportunities for studying historical, cultural and religious art.
  • Through art extend and enrich other curriculum areas.


Art and Design Implementation

The teaching and learning of art at St James Primary School is based upon the EYFS Statutory Framework and the National Curriculum for Key Stage 1 & 2. To ensure that our teaching across school is progressive, there is a skills document in place, provided to all teaching staff. This enables teaching staff to adapt planning to cater for the individual needs of pupils – including our pupils with special educational needs or those who show a particular flair for an aspect of art. The progression of skills ensures that children are given the opportunity to revisit and review previous learning, whilst continuously building upon these existing skills to move their learning forward. We also allow children the time to build confidence to experiment with their own ideas, by providing them with inspiring topics and opportunities to explore the works of famous artists. Coverage within the progression of skills to be taught across school includes drawing, colour, print, pattern, painting, texture and form.

Art and Design is currently taught across school as part of a topic-based curriculum. Teachers adapt lessons to meet the needs of individual pupils and plan for children to work both independently and collaboratively, on large and small scales and in both 2D and 3D form.

Formative assessment takes place throughout lessons and is used to inform next steps. Each year group study a range of artists to develop their knowledge and understanding of how people and their creations have helped to shape history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation. These artists have been mapped out across the whole school.


Art and Design Impact


Within the Art and Design curriculum, we strive to instil an appreciation and enjoyment of the arts to enrich the children’s learning experience. Our Art and Design curriculum is high quality and is planned to demonstrate progression. We measure the impact of our curriculum in the following ways:


  • Pupil and teacher discussions about their work and learning.
  • Continual assessment of the children’s work.
  • Children in the EYFS are formally assessed against Development Matters, within Expressive Art and Design termly. At the end of the EYFS, pupils are assessed against the ELG’s.
  • Teaching staff in KS1 & KS2 assess children’s ability termly using Insight.
  • Pupil progress is monitored closely and used to inform teaching, before being shared between year groups upon transition.
  • Children’s artwork is stored in their learning journeys in the EYFS, and then in A3 zipper and sketch books in KS1 & KS2. 
  • Discussions with pupils by the subject leader in order to hear the ‘child’s voice’.
  • High quality displays in classrooms and around school.


Art and Design Long-Term Overview

Art and Design Knowledge and Skills Progression

Art and Design Vocabulary Progression

If you want further information about the curriculum content your child is covering please call the school office to arrange an appointment to see the subject leader. 


Please see below some photographs of our amazing art work displayed at Walsall Art Gallery. The theme was, ‘what makes me happy.’