At Crab Lane, our aim is to develop the children’s art skills in the Early Years and Key Stage 1. When children are in Key Stage 2, they are able to use these skills to create their own unique styles using their preferred media types. Children are encouraged to investigate art in-depth, thus enabling them to critique their own and others’ work and develop a rigorous understanding of art and design.
Children at Crab Lane have varied experiences of art outside of the classroom; therefore, we aim to develop the children’s ‘cultural capital’ through visits to galleries and creating links with local artists and art projects.
What do we do at Crab Lane?
At Crab Lane we use the International Primary Curriculum to ‘spark’ ideas for different topics. As part of these topics, we explore different themes through art. The children are inspired and challenged to experiment with different media types and create their own work in response to a stimulus.
Each child has their own sketchbook, which they keep with them throughout their school life. The sketch books are used to record their learning and they use them to review and revisit ideas. When children reach Year 6, they are able to reflect on their own development in art throughout their time at Crab Lane.
Every year, as part of the Manchester Arts Education Initiative, the children in Year 5 and 6 explore different Shakespearian plays and create pieces of art in response to them. These are displayed in exhibitions alongside the performances which have previously taken part in the Victoria Baths. Children are able to use the range of skills they have honed during their time at Crab Lane to create impressive works that delight both children and adults alike.
Within school, we are lucky enough to benefit from having a designated art room, which is in the process of being developed to be used as a creative space for all children to explore a range of different media types.
In each year group, children are taught specific skills in discrete art lessons. The children then apply these skills in cross-curricular ways. The children are then encouraged to use art in History, Geography, Science, RE, Literacy, Maths, French and Computing. One of the most important aspects of the art and design curriculum is learning about the work of a range of artists, craft makers and designers. In Manchester, we have a wealth of local artists (both past and present). We investigate numerous artists and children are encouraged to describe the similarities and differences between different practices and disciplines, and make links to their own work.
Below is an outline of the skills that the children are taught in each year group linked to the National Curriculum.
Over the next two years, we are working hard to achieve the Gold Award for Arts Mark at Crab Lane. The Arts Mark will celebrate the variety of methods we use as a school to foster creativity through the arts. In order to achieve this, we have led staff training in developing the children’s art skills through clear modelling and differentiation. All staff have been trained in the use of sketchbooks to create a balanced showcase of the children’s talent and skill development throughout their time at Crab Lane. Commitment to the arts can be seen by all at Crab Lane, with even each member of staff having their own sketchbook to show their own art journey.