As practice makes perfect, I cannot but make progress; each drawing one makes, each study one paints, is a step forward.

Vincent Van Gogh

Head of Creative Arts and Technology Faculty

Gwen Frye  |

Subject Lead

Jessica Hamp


Helen Crump   |

Catalina Garces

Anita Walker



The Art and Design curriculum at Acland Burghley aims to engage students in questioning ‘What is Art & Design’: What is it, who makes it, where, how, why, when, and who uses it?

Projects are designed to both explore students own creativity and to develop their visual language to communicate their responses to these key questions. In Y7, Y8 and Y9 students will work on a range of investigations into specific historical and contemporary approaches and disciplines within art and design (developing a larger interconnected picture of what art and design is), uses of media and formal elements, the key artists involved in these practices and, crucially, how the resulting outcomes are displayed and received by audiences.

Projects encompass 2D and 3D making, and in Y7, they lay a foundation with key concepts and practices developed and extended in Y8 and then Y9 moving to an introduction to GCSE. It develops student’s skills for learning; recording, developing and refining ideas through use of media and sources, contextualizing, and making and presenting own work – skills that prepare for success at GCSE.

Homework is set twice each half term and students can select from a range of tasks that develop and extend the ideas and skills taught through classwork. At KS3 there is one hour of Art per week.

KS3 Curriculum overviews



GCSE Art & GCSE Textiles

At GCSE projects are designed to take students through the different stages of an art and design project illustrating the processes that they need to explore and demonstrate an understanding of to be successful at GCSE.

They are guided through exploring and responding to a set theme, learning: How sources inspire the development of ideas; the way in which meaning, ideas and intentions can be communicated through visual language using the formal elements; the characteristics, properties and effects of different media, materials and techniques; and the different purposes, intentions and functions of art, craft and design

The course is structured around an initial period of teacher-led workshops followed by a period of independent work allowing students to develop and explore their own ideas, and demonstrate independent understanding of what it means to make art, design and craft work.

Across the course students need to:

  • Develop ideas through investigating, selecting and critically analysing sources

  • Apply an understanding of art practices and cultural industries to own work

  • Refine work as it progresses

  • Record ideas and observations using drawing and written annotation

  • Use visual language through effective and safe use of: Media, Materials, Techniques, Processes & technology

  • Use drawing skills for different purposes

  • Realise & present own intentions for making art and design work

Y10 and Y11



Freedom/Limitations exhibition