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Art in the EYFS

Art Curriculum Overview


“Art and design is not just a subject to learn, but an activity that you can practise with your hands, your eyes, your whole personality.” Quentin Blake, children’s illustrator

Art inspires wonder, develops imagination and creative thinking and encourages children to be curious and resilient. At Chad Vale, we believe that all children are artists. We aim to provide an art and design curriculum which both engages, inspires and challenges our pupils. We provide opportunities for our children to:

  • Explore and develop their ideas using a range of visual, tactile and sensory experiences.

  • Experience a broad range of art forms and media.

  • Become increasingly proficient in techniques by progressively building on skills as they move across the school.

  • Explore the work of both traditional and contemporary artists, designers and craft makers from a variety of cultures, thus developing their understanding of the value of art in the real world.

  • Produce and evaluate their own artworks, using the language of art and design.



Our art scheme of work is based on the National Curriculum and has been developed by our Arts Lead. Key skills have been mapped out for each strand in art, enabling progression.


These skills are revisited at certain points in each key stage, allowing the children to apply them to new contexts and thus deepen their understanding.

In the Foundation Stage, art forms part of ‘expressive arts and design’ and takes place throughout the year. Children learn key skills by participating in regular teacher-led art activities, whilst simultaneously having daily access to continuous provision. This allows them to build on the skills they have been taught, as well as giving them the freedom to experiment and invent. Staff also provide enhanced provision so that children have the opportunity to develop their interests through child-initiated learning.

In Years 1 to 6, children build on the learning that has taken place in EYFS. They complete three art topics a year, usually taught in half-termly blocks. Topics may link to other curriculum areas such as history or science and each unit of work has a distinct focus, such as drawing, painting, sculpture, printing, collage or textiles. Opportunities are also provided within some topics to produce digital art. Each topic is linked to an artist from a variety of cultures.

Children from Year 1 onwards use sketch books to record their creative journeys. At the end of each art unit, the work is evaluated by both the children themselves and staff. Sketch books follow the children throughout the school.

In addition to this, we run two Art Weeks a year, where every class produces artwork based on a particular theme, chosen by our Creative Art Council. This culminates in vibrant displays to showcase the children’s learning.

We supplement our curriculum with visits to galleries and collaborations with artists. Our ‘artist in residence’ is local artist and parent, Tereza Buskova, who runs our art clubs, as well as providing a number of whole-class workshops.

We believe that art should have no barriers; we use a range of strategies to support children with SEND, depending on their needs. This may include additional adult support, tools adapted to the child’s needs or learning broken down into smaller steps. This provides opportunities for all children to both enjoy the creative process and achieve to the best of their ability.


As a result of the teaching and learning in art, children will:

  • use a variety of media with increasing confidence and skill.

  • develop their proficiency in a variety of art forms, including drawing, painting and sculpture be inspired by artists from different cultures and historical periods.

  • use their knowledge, skills and imagination to produce creative artworks.

  • develop ‘cultural capital’ through exploration of artists and their work; by working with artists, including local practitioners, and by visiting galleries.

  • attain in Arts Award at ‘Discover’ level (usually at the end of Year 4).

  • develop the confidence to experiment and take risks when producing art

  • develop their creativity by attending extra-curricular art clubs run by local artist, Tereza Buskova.

  • develop pupil voice and leadership skills by becoming an art ambassador, part of our Creative Arts Council.

  • celebrate their artistic achievements through display, both in school and in the wider community.          



The impact of our art curriculum can be validated by the fact that we were awarded the prestigious Artsmark Gold award in October 2021. Artsmark is a nationally recognized award, accredited by Arts Council England.      


Art Ambassadors                              

Art Ambassadors 2021-22.jpeg