Coppice Valley Primary School

Learners for Life



At Coppice Valley we offer children an art curriculum which is accessible to all, maximising the development of every child’s ability. The enjoyment of art is promoted, progressively building on children’s previous work, achievements, and skills. To ensure all children can access the lesson, work is scaffolded for pupils, if appropriate. Wherever possible, our art curriculum is also enhanced by outdoor learning, trips and visitors. Our grounds make it possible for us to create land art and use natural materials to create art and design. We work with a local art gallery, The Mercer, visiting them to see exhibitions and workshops. In the summer term, the school celebrates pupils’ art with an exhibition. Every pupil has work included and all the local community, including the mayor, is invited.

We follow the National Curriculum and link learning across subjects when possible, which we call learning umbrellas. Pupils build knowledge about artists, subject specific vocabulary and art movements. They learn skills so they can create their own art. 

We encourage children to talk about their work and the work of others. After each lesson, children have reflection time where they have the opportunity to take 5 minutes to evaluate their work and where they want to take it next. They also have opportunities to critique and offer feedback to their peers and they are taught to do so in a respectful and meaningful way. Children’s vocabularies grow with technical and expressive words relating to art and design as they progress.


Values-led Learning

Brave: Children take risks in art, pushing themselves to try new things. They will be resilient and learn to try and try again. We use the model of Austin’s Butterfly (Ron Berger) to exemplify this.

Curious: We value the importance of arts provision that nurtures every child and believe it should enable each individual to use their imagination and inspire creativity. The work of famous local, national and international artists is explored to further enrich the children's learning.

Kind: Through planning enjoyable, memorable learning experiences, we aim to develop all individual’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural understanding of the world in which they live and enabling them to see the world more clearly.

Leaning in each Phase

In EYFS, art plays a very important role in children’s development. Children are taught to represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function.

In KS1, children are taught to use a range of materials creatively to design and make products and use drawing, painting and sculpture to develop and share their ideas, experiences and imagination. They develop a wide range of art and design techniques in using colour, pattern, texture, line, shape, form and space. Children will learn to:

  • Apply paint using a range of tools (large brushes, hands, feet and rollers)
  • Use modelling materials to create an imaginary or realistic form
  • Cut and tear paper and glue it to a surface
  • Describe the sensory properties of a range of materials and decide which ones to use when making something
  • Use lines to represent a shape or outline
  • Use line and tone to draw shape, pattern and texture
  • Draw from or talk about experiences, creative ideas and observations
  • Handle and manipulate rigid and malleable materials and say how they feel
  • Create a simple pattern using colours and shapes
  • Explain the main successes and challenges encountered when completing a piece of art work
  • Choose appropriate materials and techniques for a given project.

In KS2, pupils are taught to develop their techniques, including their control and their use of materials, with creativity, experimentation and an increasing awareness of different kinds of art, craft and design. They use sketch books to record their observations and use them to review and revisit ideas. In addition, they improve their mastery of art and design techniques, including drawing, painting and sculpture with a range of materials [for example, pencil, charcoal, paint, clay]. Children will learn to:

  • Use a range of drawing media to draw natural and man-made items, giving attention to pattern, shape and form.
  • Draw from close observation to capture fine details.
  • Use cross hatching to add tonal detail
  • Take photographs and explain their creative vision.
  • Copy and create patterns and textures with a range of paints.
  • Identify interesting aspects of objects as a starting point for work.
  • Select and record visual and other information to develop ideas on a theme.
  • Comment on similarities/differences between own and other’s work, describing what they feel about both.
  • Carve and sculpt materials using a range of tools and finishing techniques (sanding, etching and smoothing)
  • Describe and explain the ideas, methods and techniques used to create artwork on a particular theme or genre.
  • Describe how techniques and themes used by other artists and genres have been developed in their own work
  • Use a range of artistic vocabulary to compare artworks of a particular genre or movement.
  • Compare and comment on a number of artworks on a similar theme, explaining the approaches taken by different artists or genres.
  • Explain how a piece of artwork makes them feel, explain views by reference to effects (colour, pattern)
  • Compare and comment on ideas/methods/approaches in own and other’s work (relating to context)