Art at NOA

Artists are critical thinkers, disruptors and creative explorers. They rely on curiosity and experimentation to further their practice which is why at NOA we teach students to collaborate, make meaning and investigate the cultures of others.

The Creative Industry is the fastest growing jobs market in the UK and as it continues to diversify it is our responsibility to make sure that students at NOA are prepared for a future in the creative sector. The Art department at NOA are passionate about developing students’ culture capital; we know that when students are able to understand visual language they are more likely to be open to cultures different from their own. At KS3 students learn a variety of techniques, basic skills and build key vocabulary whilst exploring a broad range of materials. This is contextualized through research of contemporary and classical artists, artworks and craftspeople. They learn how to manipulate materials and create artworks responding thematically and focusing on a selection social issues and historical events.

By the end of KS3, students will have developed a range of specialist vocabulary and a variety of core skills in drawing, painting, visual language and 3D. This will equip them to make meaning of the visual world and work independently, drawing from a variety of sources to design comprehensive responses to their chosen field of enquiry.

Bridging the gap between KS3 and KS4 means ensuring that students’ expertise is secure and broad. The GCSE course requires students to develop ideas, experiment, evaluate and present artworks that are personal and unique. To ensure that all of our KS4 students are able to reach this goal we scaffold learning through a range of workshops, personalised practical lessons and one to one support.

KS4/5 Art offers students the opportunity to develop autonomy in their art practice. Students are required to produce an Extended Personal Project (worth 60% of the overall grade), in which they explore subject matter of their choice. In order for all students to reach their full potential we teach students how to accurately assess their work as it pertains to the GCSE and A Level specifications, in doing so they are able to identify strengths and resolve gaps in learning by collaborating with others to evaluate progress. Using specialist vocabulary students will continually evaluate and practice what it means to be an artist.

The subject develops cultural capital in our students through a range of enrichment opportunities which are mapped into the curriculum. These include gallery trips, workshops and lunch/after school clubs. But most importantly we draw inspiration from a mixture of classical and contemporary artists, designers and crafts people. This is crucial to help contextualise the visual arts in their own lives and cultural heritage.