In Art and Design at Marden we seek to offer a fun educational journey to develop observational, imaginative, interpretive and reflective skills and experiences. Students at both Key Stages explore a range of visual and tactile experiences in order to communicate their ideas and experiences. The formal elements of line, tone, shape, form, space, texture, colour and pattern are thoroughly explored and provide a springboard from which students are able to identify, select and create in two or three dimensions.

Programs of study (POS) are designed to inspire, challenge, develop competence, imagination and creativity throughout the 11 -16 age and ability range. Drawing is based on observation, figure, perspective and imagination. Colour work is based on colour theory and a range of painting and printmaking techniques. 3D work is mostly confined to KS4 with a small amount of 3D work at KS3. New media is playing increasing role.

In Art and Design, students learn through a variety of styles and techniques. The acquisition of a broad skills base can mean that progress can be variable between POS and is very much dependent on the individual’s strengths and weaknesses. With this in mind the department recognises the need to support and encourage its students in all areas of their artistic development in order to build confident young artists with enquiring minds and creative and evaluative skills.

The Art department at Marden places a strong emphasis on the value of Peer and Self Evaluation as a reflective and ultimately a developmental tool. Both the Art and Design GCSE and The National Curriculum at KS3 encourage students to constructively criticise and appraise their own work and that of others. They learn to evaluate, discern and differentiate between styles, genres and traditions. The regular use of class discussion and the exhibition of a gallery of work as part of the plenary are aimed at inspiring confidence and support for all.

The role of Independent study (IS) is of fundamental importance to further develop research techniques and practise artistic skills. Yrs. 7 and 8 students will be set two Creative Arts IS tasks during the year. Independent study also forms a major part of the GCSE, as research and preparatory work. Both Yr10 and 11 students will be expected to complete independent research and development tasks. At present the Yr9 homework follows a traditional timetable.

The department places a strong emphasis on extra-curricular work, with both art rooms being open to KS4 students after school most nights. We take GCSE students on an educational gallery visit. We take part in cross curricular’ Super Learning’ days, and participate in local community events such as the ‘Mouth of the Tyne’ parade.