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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 begin to develop their drawing skills using pencil and chalk – these are familiar mediums and build on the children’s learning from the Early Years, relating to the children’s own identity and experiences. This is further explored by moving from 2d drawings to 3d representations of houses or geographical features through the use of a variety of materials in term 1 and 2. In the final term children explore painting and printing techniques to represent the colours and shapes within the local environment.

In Year 2, the children transfer the drawing skills from Year 1 to the use of charcoal. The 3d representation continues by making models using different medium for example, clay. The final focus is painting. By connecting children's understanding of primary and secondary colours from Year 1, children learn to create tints and shades through colour mixing. The children use these colours to explore different brush strokes.


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, they build on the drawing skills learned from Key Stage 1 with the introduction of sketchbooks to record and explore their ideas and feelings. These sketches are then used to develop their painting and printing skills. The 3d focus continues as children choose a range of materials to create different effects through collage. They continue to develop their understanding of colour mixing using chalk and pastels to create the effect of light and shadow.

In Year 4, children build on the connections made previously with colour mixing, light and shade, brush sizes along with tones and tints. They explore these techniques through the use of water colours. The 3d aspect is explored through the medium of clay, where the children further develop their understanding of plasticine from Year 2 to create texture and detail in order to convey specific effects. Sketch books are used to develop and evaluate their designs. They connect their knowledge of using charcoal from Year 2 and further develop this using their understanding of light and shade to create effective moods.

In Year 5, building on from Year 4, the children use their understanding of colour mixing to create their own palettes and experiment to create various effects and visual interest. Their drawing skills are further developed through learning how to depict perspective, shadows and reflection using their sketch books to evaluate and improve their own ideas. This is connected to their understanding of architecture and design through their history topic and as a precursor to their learning about infrastructure in Year 6. The final focus is using collage and print techniques to create more complex designs and effects, building on their work from Year 3.

In Year 6, pupils apply all of their previously learnt skills and knowledge about painting, drawing and use of materials to independently select the most appropriate medium to represent their ideas, giving valued reasons for their choices and its impact on the audience. Opportunities are given for this throughout the year.