Key Stage 4

The Creative Arts Department offers three pathways of learning at GCSE level. These include Art, Craft and Design, Textiles and Photography. The KS4 curriculum runs over 3 years beginning in Year 9 and concluding in Year 11. This timescale allows us to spend the first year building skills and introducing students to the standards expected at GCSE level. All students are introduced to a wide range of media, materials, techniques and processes over the 3 years.


Art, Craft and Design:

Year 1 – Natural Forms and Birds, Bugs and Beasts drawing, painting and printmaking & graphics

Year 2 – ‘One World’ exploring art and culture drawing, painting, mixed media

Year 3 – Independent Project and Externally Set Exam



Year 1 – Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Sweet Treats experimental samples and print-making

Year 2 – Upcycled/Recycled manipulation, experimentation and garment-making

Year 3 – Independent Project and Externally Set Exam



Year 1 – Pod 1-Ways of Seeing, Pod 2-Light and Shadows and Past, Present and Future

Year 2 – Portraiture and Contrasts

Year 3 – Independent Project and Externally Set Exam

The students produce Component 1 – Personal Portfolio which is worth 60% of the final mark. The majority of the work will be in sketchbooks alongside practical investigations, it will include written annotation and analysis when looking at the work of other artists, photographers and designers. Students will also create larger outcomes that demonstrate their realisation of the theme or techniques they have been studying. Component 2 - The Externally Set Assignment is worth 40% of the marks. This is a theme set by the exam board and released in January of the final year. Students have 8-10 weeks to prepare a sketchbook of work in line with the assessment objectives in for their exam. The exam is a 10-hour period during which the students must produce a personal practical outcome in response to the exam theme. The work is marked internally and moderated externally.


Literacy at KS4:

Although we are practical subjects, we still demand a high level of literacy within our sketchbooks. Students will be supported in developing the skill of analysing visual language. Annotations will be expected to demonstrate that students can review, refine and reflect upon their progress. SPAG (spelling, punctuation and grammar) and presentation must be considered at all times. We also support our students with writing frameworks and sentence starters to help them build confidence in their written work.

We celebrate our students’ success whenever possible, exhibiting work in the local community, around the school building and also at our Creativity Evening.