Art and Design

The national curriculum for art and design aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences
  • become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques
  • evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design
  • know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms

To achieve these aims, there are 5 key strands which run throughout our Art and Design scheme of learning.

  1. Making skills
  2. Generating ideas
  3. Formal elements
  4. Knowledge of artists
  5. Evaluating

Spiral curriculum

We use Kapow Primary’s Art and design scheme which has been designed as a spiral curriculum with the following key principles in mind:

✓ Cyclical: Pupils return to the same skills again and again during their time in primary school.

✓ Increasing depth: Each time a skill is revisited it is covered with greater complexity.

✓ Prior knowledge: Upon returning to a skill, prior knowledge is utilised so pupils can build upon previous foundations, rather than starting again.

Formal elements of art units

With the exception of UKS2 in cycle B, each year group has a unit called ‘Formal elements of Art’. These units focus on the discrete skills of the formal elements of art which are:

● Line

● Shape

● Tone

● Texture

● Pattern

● Colour  

Art and design skills units

Each year group has a unit called ‘Art and design skills’ which focuses specifically on developing pupils’ art, craft and design skills in a discrete way.

The knowledge and skills from these two recurring units are then applied throughout the rest of the scheme within the other units (e.g. Sculpture and collage or Prehistoric art).

Our coverage of each unit is mapped out within the long-term overview which shows both cycle A and cycle B for each phase of school.

<— Click image to view the long term overview for Art and Design


Vocabulary plays an essential role in the understanding of key concepts in art and design. We believe that it is vital that the children learn and remember key tier 3 Art and Design vocabulary within each unit that we teach. The art and design vocabulary lists map out the tier 3 vocabulary learn at each phase in school. Our knowledge organisers capture the key vocabulary taught within each unit. Our lesson structure clearly identifies a section in which vocabulary is discussed and taught.

<— Click image to view key vocabulary for each year group


Knowledge organisers

Our Art and Design knowledge organisers map out the key tier 3 vocabulary to be taught within a unit. They also include some key facts, images and significant artists whose work will be explored during the teaching of each unit. These knowledge organisers represent the minimum knowledge that we expect the children to acquire throughout the unit.

Lesson structure

We have an agreed lesson structure for the teaching of Art and Design. These encompasses some of our key teaching and learning principles.