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Drawing, Painting, sculpting and producing other types of Art is not merely about reproducing the world around us; abstracting ideas or visions and re assembling them to fit a new idea, Art opens our own minds, questioning, searching and wondering through endless mysteries limited only by ourselves. Where other subjects question our thoughts, our origins, our past and present, like an annoying younger sibling Art can piggy-back onto these thoughts and questions and express them in a array of ways. The breadth and depth that can be explored in Art is an abyss where only the brave venture into the unknown.

At Camp Hill Boys, students will be encouraged to plumb the depths of creativity and imagination to discover something new and inspiring for themselves. Students will be exposed the breadth and depth that art can offer as a subject in order to make a positive impact and on their development and lives.

The Art department aims is to build confidence and enjoyment in lessons, develop skills and techniques in a range of disciplines and engender a sense of discovery in the world around them. At whatever stage that a student leaves the Art department; at the end of year 9, GCSE or A-Level, all students will have an appreciation and understanding of the value and contribution that Art gives to society and individuals.


I have learned that what I have not drawn, I have never really seen… – Frederick Franck

Studying Art at KS3 (Years 7, 8 and 9)

Core Aims: Develop skills, confidence, imagination and enjoyment

In Key Stage 3 students are taught skills and practices in order to bring all students to a level where by they are confident in handing basic materials, have a developed sense of imagination and creativity and above all enjoy the subject of Art and Design. In Key Stage 3, all classes will work on 3 main projects and one internal examination project over the course of a year. In year 7 and 8 this examination project will take place in the third term and year 9 will take their internal examination in the second term.

Internal examinations will last between 3 – 4 weeks and will culminate in a controlled examination period of 4 hours. The results of this examination will be combined with the end of project results to give students a level according to the Art & Design National Curriculum (See ‘Art & Design Assessment Policy 2012/2013’ for further details)

Homework in Key stage 3 will follow the schools policy on time allocated per subject. Homework will sometimes follow on from work started in lessons, or at time may be a separate task to be completed at home e.g. research or collecting of resources. If there are students that find access to materials or space at home a difficulty, the art rooms will be available for students to use weekdays (excluding Friday lunchtimes).

Year 7

Students come to Camp Hill having passed an entrance test, but will generally have a mixed background in terms of Art and Design. As a result the aims in the first year at Camp Hill Boys is to bring all students to a level where they are familiar with basic skills, how to work at secondary level and manage expectations from the Art department staff. In the first term the project is aimed at developing confidence and understanding some of the formal elements in Art & Design such as composition, colour and proportion. Projects in T2 and 3 build further on formal skills with basic materials such as drawing, painting and mixed media collage. All projects will be underpinned and contextualized with examples and pupil led research of significant Artists from the past as well as contemporary practising artists.

Year 8

In the second year at Camp Hill Boys students will be introduced to a broader range of skills and encourage to try new skills and take creative and imaginative leaps in their own work. Skills in year 8 include printmaking, ceramic work and mixed media work. As with year 7, projects will incorporate research of artists related to the project theme or topic. Projects in year 8 will continue to develop student’s core skills of drawing and design through sketchbook class and homework.

Year 9

In year 9 students will explore more issue based projects and work on projects that not only continue to develop practical skills, but challenge students to consider the role of the viewer and what messages they want their work to give to others; as Art is a key form of expression this will be one of the main focuses in year 9. Projects themes include ‘human rights’ ‘Greek Mythology and Sculpture’ and ‘construction with recycled materials’. Part of the departments focus in year 9 will be on attaching students to take Art as an option at GCSE – this will come through showing the opportunities available through having a creative background. Before year 9 options are taken part or whole lessons may be given to this purpose.

Studying Art at KS4 (Years 10 and 11)

GCSE AQA Exam Board

Core Aims: Develop experience, quality, independence and creativity

In GCSE Art and design students are expected to complete 2 main units of work; Unit 1 coursework and Unit 2 an Externally Set Assignment (ESA) from the examinations board. Coursework will be broken down into 4 main projects; three projects in year 10 and one in year 11. The examination boards state that a minimum of one coursework project must be submitted comprising of at least two different themes. As the students will cover four projects, students will be left with options to combine stronger projects together or submit up to four coursework projects. In order for students to be prepared for the ESA they must be independent and able to adapt to different themes. Over the course of the GCSE students will be encouraged to take creative risks and become less dependent on direction from the teacher – generally speaking a scaffolding approach will be adopted by the teacher.

Students will be given an A4 or A3 sketchbook to work in but will also be expected to work on larger scales and with a range of media where appropriate. Once a year students will be taken on an invaluable Art trip to London to visit national galleries and experience Artwork first hand that can directly inform their developing coursework. Students may also be encouraged to visit local galleries and Art schemes outside of school.

It is expected that students will work on coursework and ESA outside of the classroom. As with KS3, where materials and facilities are problematic for students, the Art room will be available at lunchtimes (excluding Friday).

Year 10

Over the two-year course students will be developing imaginatively and creatively, being taught more advanced skills, processes and techniques while growing in confidence and independence. The intention in year 10 is to expose students to new and more technically challenging skills in more controlled and guided projects. In the first term themes and outcomes are closely directed so that students can be brought up to GCSE standard at a quick pace. As new projects are introduce each term, more flexibility will be given to those students who can handle it with support available to those students that may need further support. Each project will meet the four assessment criteria and result in a completed outcome for each student.

Year 11

In year 11 students will generally speaking have less time to complete course work taking into account ESA and other examinations / examination study leave etc. In term 1 student will work on an open-ended project with one core theme where students will be quickly encourage to develop and move projects in their own direction. At this stage the role of teacher becomes more that of tutor with students receiving tuition and feedback on a one to one basis. Feedback for students will be very specific to each students and tailored to their own needs (for further information please see ‘Art and Design Assessment Policy’ doc.). In the second term students will complete coursework and start on their externally set assignment given by the examinations board.

Studying Art at KS5 (Years 12 and 13)

AS/A2 AQA Exam Board

Core Aims: Develop innovation, confidence, individuality, and drive

Students at both AS and A2 level are expected to complete two units of coursework a year; Unit 1 & 2 in AS and unit 3 & 4 at A2. Units 2 and 4 are both Externally Set Assignments (ESA) given by the examinations board. At A2 level students are also required to complete a 1000 – 3000 word essay that contributes to unit 3.

One of the key tenants of being successful at A-Level is being independent. Students will be taught advanced skills, techniques and processes while at the same time being strongly encouraged to become independent and to develop a personal and original style.

AS Level

Students will spend the first part of the year exploring abstract possibilities and learning to adapt, control and manipulate formal elements. After a one to one session, students discuss and develop their own working title for their coursework adapted from a broad title given to them. Throughout the course of the year students will be expected to contribute to group critiques sharing opinions and supporting each other in their creative practices. Each student will be allocated a working space that students can use as a studio space throughout the year. As part of the AS course students will be encouraged to view and experience Art works first hand in galleries and in October 2012 will be going on a school trip to Paris. Students will be given feedback and support on a one to one basis and will produce work in either an A3 (or larger) sketchbook or a portfolio. Depending on individual needs. At the end of the year students will be expected to take a key role in their own display of work for moderation and exhibition.

A2 Level

In the final year of A-level students will work independently based on a theme and topic of their choice. Students are required to submit a proposal for study and will receive one to one support throughout the course of the year. Students will be taught skills and techniques tailored to their needs and based on individual project developments. In addition to practical work and development, students will undertake a written component of the course. This personal study is supported by a detailed information booklet and one to one feedback with the teacher. As with the AS students, A2 students will be expected to take a key role in their own display of work for moderation and exhibition at the end of the year before examination leave. Overall students will be expected to work at the highest possible levels for their age and expected to demonstrate creativity flair and imagination.

Resources and the Department

Head of Department: Mr Richard Parkinson
Teacher of Art: Ms Kate Rawlins

The art room is resourced with typical materials associated with Art and design such as pencils, paints, brushes etc. Below is a list of the main additional resources or equipment that is available at Camp Hill Boys:

  • A2 Photo screen printing exposure unit and screens
  • A1 Screen/stencil printing facilities and screens
  • Mount cutters and framing equipment
  • 10 – 15 (approx.) full size painting easels
  • 5 desktop computers
  • 2 digital projectors + 2 interactive whiteboard
  • 1 photocopier / scanner / printer
  • 1 tabletop print press
  • 1 kiln
  • Electric pottery wheel

The Art department consists of 2 main areas – 2 x teaching rooms with one extended computer / ICT area.


The Art department is in the process of developing a range of extra curricular activities and support for students across all key stages. The purpose of which is to encourage and enthuse those students who maybe struggling or feel they need additional help within art, to push and challenge those that have a particular interest in the subject, to allow students to catch up on work that they may have missed and to give students access to materials and resources that may not be available at home.

The atmosphere during lunch time sessions is relaxed and it provides the students with opportunities to be collaborative in forms that lessons do not allow e.g. sharing ideas with students of different year groups.

Current Extra Curricular activities within school include:

  • Y9 drawing Club – Monday lunchtimes
  • Open door drop in sessions Monday – Thursday lunchtimes

Current Extra Curricular activities outside of school include:

  • Visits to London national galleries (Saatchi, National Portrait, Tate, Tate Modern), Local Gallery visits (New Art Gallery, Ikon, BMAG)
  • International KS5 Art trip

Future plans for extra curricular activities include:

  • Y7 Art Club
  • Camp Hill Printmakers Society
  • Parents/Staff Art Society
  • KS5 Life Drawing Classes
  • Parkie’s Pic Competition. In conjunction with Kings Heath Loco Lounge


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