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Dartford Bridge Primary


All the pupils in the DBCPS community, including SEN and disadvantaged pupils, will participate and learn the following concepts and themes through studying different aspects of art throughout the school.

At DBCPS we aim to teach children to:

  • Take inspiration
  • Explore and develop their ideas
  • Master techniques
  • Evaluate and develop their artwork

We do this through the following key concepts:

  • Line
  • Space
  • Shape
  • Form
  • Texture
  • Value (range of darkness to light).
  • Colour

Within our Art curriculum we cover the following core themes:

  • Drawing – including pencil, chalk, charcoal
  • Painting – including watercolours, acrylic, oil paint
  • Using materials – including sculpture, using recycled materials, collage

 By connecting our British Values through the teaching of Art, we explore issues that affect us all in our lives and this helps inform decisions that will shape our future. An example is the right to have a different opinion and the need to respect the views and opinions of others.

Art is taught in blocks within the main curriculum topics – geography, history and science. Art skills are connected by using the subject knowledge within each of these areas as inspiration. For example, children in year 4 develop their geographical understanding of coasts and coastal erosion and further develop this knowledge when painting coastal scenes with watercolours. Alongside the scheme of work the year children are given the opportunity to explore a range of mediums and to develop their artistic creativity in order to have some understanding and experience before the focussed skills/technique learning. In all year groups, children discuss the work of artists, craftspeople, other sculptors and designers by asking and answering questions for example such as what is it like and what do I think about it?

 In our EYFS children learn to explore and use different media and materials. Children experiment with media and materials finding out about their properties and testing how they can be modified and manipulated through a mixture of child and adult initiated activities. They explore sounds, patterns, movement as well as different tools and techniques. Children learn to be imaginative. Entering into the world of pretence, building on their experiences and turning them into something new through role play, small world play, music and block play.

In Year 1, the children explore colour mixing through paint play. They use a range of tools and work on different surfaces. They create paintings inspired by Clarice Cliff and Jasper Johns. Children develop observational drawing skills when exploring mark making. They investigate how texture can be created in drawings using a range of tools. Pupils then apply their skills into a collaborative piece using music as a stimulus. They look at the artists Bridget Riley and Zaria Forman. Finally children create simple 3D shapes and structures using familiar materials. They learn to develop their skills in manipulating paper and card as they fold, roll and scrunch materials to make their own sculpture inspired by the tree of life screen at the Sidi Saiyyed Mosque. There are opportunities to extend learning to make a collaborative sculptural piece based on the art of Louise Bourgeois.

Using storybook illustrations as a stimulus, children in Year 2 develop their mark making skills to explore a wider range of tools and experiment with creating patterned surfaces to add texture and detail to their drawings. In Term 3, children use their knowledge of seaside locations to create artwork. Taking seaside paintings and impressionist painters as a starting point, pupils investigate how mixing a wider range of colours contributes to different effects. They explore surface texture when selecting and combining materials to make a mixed media final piece. Finally, children develop their ability to work with clay. They learn how to create simple thumb pots then explore the work of sculpture Rachel Whiteread and apply her ideas in a final piece that uses techniques such as cutting, shaping, joining and impressing into clay.

In Key Stage 2 children improve their mastery of art and design techniques learned in Key Stage 1, thorough applying them in a range of different contexts.

In Year 3, children investigate making their own paints, making tools and painting on different surfaces to explore prehistoric art. Children explore the techniques of artists such as Georgia O’Keefe and Maud Purdy to draw natural forms. They learn about the differences in the choice of drawing medium, scale and use tonal shading to create form. Finally children explore how shapes and negative spaces can be represented by 3D forms. They learn ways to join and create freestanding structures by manipulating a range of materials inspired by the work of Anthony Caro and Ruth Asawa.

In Year 4, children develop their colour mixing skills from KS1 using shades and tints to show form and create three dimensions when painting. Pupils learn about composition and plan their own still life to paint by applying chosen techniques. Using electrical items as a starting point, pupils develop an awareness of composition in drawing and they combine media for effect when developing a drawing into a print. Finally children learn about the techniques of Barbara Hepworth and Sokari Douglas-Camp, exploring the way different materials can be shaped and joined.

Investigating self-portraits by a range of artists, children in Year 5 use photographs of themselves as a starting point for developing their own unique self-portraits in mixed media. Developing ideas more independently, pupils consider the purpose of drawings as they investigate how imagery was used in the ‘Space Race’ that began in the 1950s. They combine collage and printmaking to create a piece in their own style. Finally children use inspiration from historical monuments and modern instillations to plan a sculpture to fit a design brief. They investigate scale the display environment and possibilities for viewer interaction with their piece.

In Year 6, children identify an artist that interests them. They research the life, techniques and artistic intentions of that individual. Collecting ideas in sketchbooks, children plan for a final piece and work collaboratively to present what they have learned about the artist. They explore art with a message, looking at the famous Guernica by Picasso as well as the confronting works of Kathe Kollowitz. They develop their drawings to incorporate new surfaces and a range of techniques as well as an emerging personal style. Finally children use art to document the memories of their time at primary school. They select their favourite art and design skills and techniques and create 3D artwork to represent their memories.