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OIAMFS has at its heart the three drivers of Sport, Arts and Enterprise. We are committed to developing the creative element of our students and Art is a key aspect of this.



Thinking skills are essential for all learners. Creating and encountering art both provide opportunities for complex thinking. In our Art curriculum, we aim to promote creative curiosity and artistic confidence through exposure to practical skills and strong knowledge of the subject. By following a cohesive programme of study, our students learn the importance of personal engagement with art, craft and design work. The practice and exploration of skills and processes enables students to become confident with the metacognitive demands of this subject. For example, at the end of each project, students produce a plan of action to execute a personal final piece of artwork based on previous artistic findings.

Students continually revisit relevant skills and key knowledge and build upon them each year, tackling increasingly challenging concepts. As each step in their learning journey develops, it incorporates a deeper understanding of prior experience. Risk taking is also encouraged and students are taught how to manage unpredictable outcomes that require thorough understanding and the ability to think practically to overcome obstacles. Student progress is documented through sketchbooks and the execution of personal pieces of art, craft and design work. In the classroom, we encourage conversations, discussions and critical thinking about students’ own work and about the work of others. This embeds and extends our students’ understanding of artistic concepts and principles whist enriching their vocabulary.

As a school, we value the unique nature of art, craft and design and how it facilitates each student’s ability to:

  • Think creatively
  • Develop critical thinking skills
  • Develop problem solving skills
  • Demonstrate resilience in order to achieve success
  • Learn how to express themselves and develop original and purposeful ideas
  • Enhance their fine motor skills
  • Develop hand eye co-ordination skills
  • Develop greater visual literacy and emotional intelligence.

Through our curriculum design, exploring a range of art, craft and design approaches, we endeavour to create opportunities to broaden our students’ understanding of the world they inhabit locally, nationally, and globally across different cultures, places and times. We explore concepts and perspectives the students have never encountered as well as those to which they feel they can make an immediate connection to encourage our students to grow on a personal, social and cultural level.

We build on the Cultural Capital of our students by providing them with a means to engage with and understand the world around them and their relationship with it. We seek to enrol in initiatives led by Arts organisations, facilitate artist workshops (we have recently hosted an Artist in Residence originally from Nigeria) and plan gallery visits (E.g., Cartwright Hall in Lister Park, Bradford).


At OIAMFS, students have an art lesson every week in Key Stage Three. Lessons are structured to enable students to produce personal responses to each project brief set. Students are given a copy of the project sheet which outlines the project brief, lists provide a set of learning questions and states which assessment objective each question is linked to.

By answering each of the learning questions students will:

  • Use a range of techniques to record their observations and insights in sketchbooks as a basis for exploring their ideas
  • Experience a range of techniques working in 2D and 3D.
  • Increase their proficiency in the handling of different materials. (These could include 2D media such as pen, pencil, oil pastels and ink and 3D media such as card construction, papier mache and clay.)
  • Develop their visual literacy through the theoretical understanding and use of the formal elements in both art and design work.
  • Analyse and evaluate their own work, and that of others, in order to develop their own ideas and create a more original, personal response to the project brief set.
  • Understand the history of art, craft, design and architecture by identifying where pieces of art “fit” into the timeline of “Art”, from ancient times up to the present day, furthering students’ knowledge and understanding of major historical events and inventions which have influenced the development of major art and design styles, movements and periods.

KEY STAGE 4 (option Choice)

Students who are passionate about Art, Design and Craft work, are creatively inquisitive and/or want to continue developing their understanding of the visual world can continue their studies in KS4 by opting to take Art GCSE. We also recommend that any student who has a realistic desire to pursue a career in the Arts or Design and Media industries should choose GCSE Art.

In the GCSE Fine Art course, students will develop and refine the knowledge and skills learnt in Key Stage 3 by working more independently. They will have opportunities to combine materials and techniques to find new and more original ways of working in both two and three dimensions. Our students will be encouraged and supported to follow their own lines of enquiry and imagination in order to develop and produce more original and personal work. GCSE students are encouraged to regularly take their sketchbooks home to extend their work, especially during weekends and holidays. Resources and materials to support this work can be borrowed and taken home.  The course has two components: a Personal Portfolio and an Externally Set Assignment.  

What Parents/Carers can do to help:

Your child will be given a Knowledge Organiser to accompany each project sheet and task list. This summarises the key information they must know and use if they are to be successful in this subject.