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Creative Arts

Creative Arts

Art is an adventure into an unknown world, which can only be explored by those willing to take the risks. - Mark Rothko

We believe that creativity is a fundamental aspect of education and a cornerstone of personal development.

To develop the creative possibilities within each student we endeavour to provide a stimulating and exciting environment where students can develop their artistic creativity whether they are studying Art for examinations or as an introduction to the subject.  We strive for excellence and aim to expose students arts based culture in both contemporary and historical frameworks.

The Art department prides itself on making art meaningful, enjoyable and accessible to all students whilst promoting the confidence and a desire in students to produce work of quality and meaning. In order to achieve these objectives an understanding of the formal elements of art and design is essential component of teaching and learning, embedding technical competence in a wide range of media. Practical demonstrations are central to the teaching ethos of the department providing an effective means of introducing new skills and techniques whilst generating confidence in the students.


Art Learning Journey

Creative Arts Team

Mr Gareth Baxendale Teacher of Creative Technology
Miss Fe Collier Art Technician
Mr John Lewis Teacher of Photography
Mrs Judith Scott Teacher of Creative Technology

All our teaching staff are professionals with specialist knowledge, within many having personal practises. Within art and photography there are specialists in Illustration, Contemporary art and theory, painting sculpture and ceramic, graphic design and wedding photography.  The teaching staff have links to creative industries within fine arts, performance and media. We also have developed excellent links with universities in, Salford, Manchester and Leeds. 

Teaching staff within the Department offer a wide range of specialist areas. These include Painting and Drawing, 3D/Ceramics; printmaking; Textiles; Art History and Photography. Art and Photography is taught within an environment which encourages students become resourceful in their approach to work, and to build on basic skills as they progress through the various courses and projects offered. 


We aim to engender a love of learning, self-belief and aspiration through several intentions that are unpacked further. Those intentions are removing barriers to learning; developing knowledge and skills for learning in a range of subjects; developing personal attributes and to enrich students’ experiences and broaden their horizons.

Through our curriculum provision we intend to develop:

  • To provide an environment where students find the creative process enjoyable and rewarding.
  • To develop the ability to record and analyse information.
  • To encourage the research and investigation of ideas.
  • To develop creative thinking skills and approaches to problem solving.
  • To ensure tolerance of others and respect for ideas and opinions.
  • To recognise and appreciate the richness and variety of Art within other cultures.
  • To develop the capacity for creative thought and action; the ability to innovate, initiate and make effective personal responses.
  • To develop physical, intellectual, technical and perceptive skills.
  • To acquire a sense of visual awareness and an appreciation of the environment
  • Learn how to value and judge constructively their own work and the work of other’s.
  • To develop social skills through participation in group projects and through shared experiences
  • To develop a ‘language’ which allows each pupil to express themselves in visual terms and communicate ideas.
  • To develop the potential for further study through the use and understanding of visual and tactile media
  • To promote independent learning, in particular to encourage all students to work in the faculty after school on a regular basis.

To be ambitious learners who understand the economic relevance of the creative industries.


Creativity cannot be passive. Students must be active. They must engage. 

At Key Stage 3 the faculty offers students the opportunity to work with a variety of materials and techniques, aiming to develop knowledge and understanding. Students are encouraged to work in ways that will prepare them for the rigour of GCSE coursework. Working in a style in keeping with coursework also gives students a clear idea of whether they want to choose Art as one of their options. The students are learning about the world around them and the focus firstly are concepts and elements of human society, this strengthens a child’s understanding and enables them to have a clear vision and voice within their visual outcomes. The processes and skills are attached to the theme and the academy learning, this empowers our students to understand the relevance of what they are producing and the impact it can have on others. 

Year 10 and 11 pupils will be required to use sketchbooks as a means for recording, researching, exploring, developing and documenting ideas for art. It will be a record of an individual’s observations, experiences, opinions and visual ideas, showing progression in knowledge, understanding and skills. Students are encouraged to work with a variety of materials and techniques, producing preparatory work in sketchbooks and developing their own ideas towards a final result.  In photography, GCSE pupils will be required to use powerpoint as a means for recording, researching, exploring, developing and documenting ideas. It will be a record of an individual’s observations, experiences, opinions and visual ideas, showing progression in knowledge, understanding and skills. Students are encouraged to work with a variety of materials, resources and techniques, developing their own ideas towards a final result. Personalised learning is a vital aspect of KS4 and all students are expected to choose their own theme to respond to. Deadlines are an important element of any artistic career and students will be expected to complete art and photography work within a timeframe. Diversity of response and an experimental approach is encouraged to enable individuals to express what they see, think and feel in their own way while realising their intentions in the making of artwork. Students are encouraged to work on canvases, ensuring their work looks professional and ambitious in its contents. 


We will assess if we are having the positive impact we aim for through regular monitoring (for example book scrutinies and learning walks) to ensure we are leading to positive progress for all. The curriculum will be evident across all lessons and students will be able articulate their learning confidently. This will also be reflected in student voice surveys, with students indicating that they are engaged and enjoying their Creative Arts lessons.

The use of data will drive our consideration of whether we are having impact. The department provides live and verbal feedback to students during lessons, so that immediate misconceptions can be addressed. Lessons will inherently contain a series of do now activities, recall questions and exit tickets in order to maximise assessment opportunities and identifying gaps where they appear. At KS4, students will receive teacher feedback in the form of a Strength and Target based on the theory work they complete and make use of online platforms to develop knowledge and skills necessary for the demands of future learning in this subject.

We will continually review and reflect on how the curriculum is designed to ensure that students remember what they have been taught.  This regular review cycle ensures that we have a curriculum pathway that promotes success for all learners and ensures that the Creative Arts curriculum is appropriate and fully differentiated for all students.