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Being an Artist at Cayton 


Why do we teach this?

At Cayton School, we aim to provide an Art and Design curriculum depending on the topics being taught to the children that half-term. We intend to offer high-quality Art and Design lessons that engage and inspire children. It provides opportunities for pupils to become aware of their well-being in a way which supports their mental health. Opportunities to display their work is embedded around school and sketch books are to be used as a working document. All pupils will be expected to achieve their full potential and continue to excel across school.


What do we teach at Cayton School?

Art and Design learning is cherished by teachers and pupils across school. Children are taught regularly by teaching staff EYFS to Year 6. They also have access to the Art Room again to become ‘active learners.’ We plan to further develop the curriculum by participating in the ArtsMark Award in September 2022.

Children will build on their vocabulary every year and will increase a bank of knowledge. They will also be exposed to the historical element to art and understand how it has progressed over time. They should be able to understand when certain artistic styles happened and which artists experimented with those styles, e.g. Renaissance art. There is a focus on the timeline which displays art through time.

The key mediums children are exposed to are: drawing, painting, sculpture, textiles, clay and collages. These skills are built on starting in EYFS and progressing on to Year 6. The ambition is that pupils will develop a passion for art and can see the value in using these skills.


What will this look like by the time they leave school?

By the end of UKS2, children will have developed confidence in using drawing and designing skills. The impact will be measured through assessment and will equip pupils for their next stage in KS3. Our Art curriculum will ensure that they can apply these skills in life and can think about using Art in their future in the wider world. Teachers have high-standards for achievement and evidence of this will be presented in a number of ways. Art books, displays across school and pupil voice through accomplishment. Children will have resilience to keep trying and improve their own work whilst using the skills that they have been taught across school.

The Learning Journey

Early Years

In EYFS, children are given the time and support to develop their co-ordination and control when using items like scissors and paintbrushes. They are given the cultural awareness to study different artists and given the tools for self-expression. Children are given the confidence to express their opinions over artwork and the resilience to change elements of their work they wish to improve.


The curriculum allows children to develop proficiency, control and confidence with a wide range of tools and develops fine motor-skills that can be used across all subjects.

Key Stage One


In Key Stage 1, children are exposed to a basic understanding of the six main mediums that we cover each year: collage, painting, drawing, digital art, textiles and clay. They are introduced to new tools needed for these skills and are encouraged to express opinions on their work.

Children are also given the time to study a range of different artists appropriate for their subjects. These range from Andy Goldsworthy to look at the use of materials and William Morris for the use of patterns. Both year groups look at landscapes. Year 1 study Henri Rousseau and Year 2 look at Esther Mahlangu for a more challenging print. They learn about tone through the pencil types and further develop their fine motor-skills introduced in Early Years focusing on more control in their work. Children are introduced to more mediums such as charcoal and pastels and explore different effects that can be created using these. In textiles, they have the opportunity to create collages using different mediums and learn the skill of weaving. They use clay as a mouldable material to develop fine motor-skills and learn how to make a slip to join clay. In their painting sessions, they start to mix colours and start to use and apply secondary colours. They use artists work and learn to evaluate and appraise a piece of work commenting on the use of technique, colour and shape. They explore historical time periods of art and begin to recreate some of these using watercolour and washes. Children start to print in Key Stage one and learn the skills of pressing, rolling, rubbing and stamping and mimic prints in different environements. They work with Digital Software to look at skills of layering, shapes, texture line and tones.

Lower Key Stage Two

Anchor 1

In Lower Key Stage 2, children are further exposed to the six main mediums in Key Stage 1, but are required to show more independence and skill for these. They are given more freedom to decide on styles and tools used to create their desired piece. The topics studied also become more complex and are usually connected to historical themes so that they can understand the cultural significance. These range from the Greeks, to looking at cave paintings. Progressing from Key Stage 1, for drawing in Key Stage 2, children are encouraged to select their own pencils for the task required. Children are also asked to try and show reflection through drawing as well as facial expressions. All children are further exposed to the world of textiles and taught to cross and back stitch. When using clay and other mouldable materials, children are encouraged to add meaningful texture and detail to their work using tools of their choice. When painting, children are required to know which primary colours can be used to make which tertiary colours. We also have discussions about how some colours can reflect mood and reflect on these reasons. Children are given the opportunity to experiment with creating printing and collage designs. In Year 3 and 4, children are asked to look at more natural printing whilst using four different colours. 


They are also exposed to the work of artists, such as Van Gogh. Children are encouraged to replicate Art in this style and recognise certain styles of Art. The curriculum also allows children to study his background, and how success that we see today can look very different at the time. This links with our metacognition focus in school. Children are also shown the History of Art and which themes fit in where.

All children are given access to The Art Room to fully emerse themselves in their journey to being artists.

Upper Key Stage Two

During Upper Key Stage Two, children are encouraged to express their own opinions on artwork. They are also able to create mixed media pieces to combine all of the skills taught previously in the curriculum. They will be able to experiment with different techniques and reflect on styles chosen and studied. Whilst the children progress through Upper Key Stage Two, they change from using acrylic paints to the harder to work with oil paints. The oil paints have a less forgivable formula to use, therefore, the children have to work faster and make meaningful strokes. In Year 5 and 6, children are given the time to understand how styles of changed and understand the historical significance of this. When printing and creating collages, children are required to use etching to show more detail in their final prints. They are also asked to use a mixed media approach to show a textured final design. 

Rotunda Museum - Web Size-141.jpg

The children look into digital art and how they can use software to create their own pieces. Amy Shakleton is an artist Year 5 study to connect with their Science topic, and to encourage children to experiment with the use of gravity in art. The children should have become familiar with the formula of acrylic paints in Lower Key Stage Two, and should be ready for the challenge. Mediums like clay and sculpture are enhanced through the use of wire to provide a further challenge.

Art Progression Map - What we learn

Adaptive Teaching in Art for SEND support

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Gallery - Art at Cayton

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