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Welcome to

St Albans Girls' School



Curriculum Intent and Overview

The curriculum covers a wide range of opportunities which run alongside a rich extra-curricular timetable. This includes both creative and STEM elements. Students are extremely proud of their achievements, and they really value the supportive nature and encouragement the department gives them. The curriculum develops and promotes:

  • A love for creativity and design.
  • Critical and lateral thinking, and problem solving.
  • Independent learning, and transferable skills.



 The Department

Curriculum Leader: Miss H Bowman


What will be studied?

All students study Art at Key Stage 3, with a one hour lesson per week. We use a variety of teaching methods to study a diverse range of media from painting and drawing, 3 dimensional design and art textiles.

Year 7

The fundamentals of drawing, colour and painting are taught in year 7 via thee individual projects. Students will understand and learn about the use of tone and mark making at the beginning of the year, progressing onto looking at the colour and painting where inspiration is taken from the Fauvist artist movement. Finally students will create a clay sculpture linked to the theme of sea life, which pulls together all new skills learnt into a bright and exciting outcome.

Year 8

Students in year 8 are introduced to the use of mixed media, sculpture, and will further develop skills in drawing and painting leading into the design and creation of a sculpture based on insects and the natural world. Portraiture is focussed on in the second part of the year, where technical aspects of proportion are introduced via the study of a range of relevant artists from a variety of cultural backgrounds. Students will complete the project by creating a self portrait influenced by the work they have looked at throughout the project. 

Year 9

In year 9, students are able to consolidate the skills they have learnt so far in KS3 via the development of a fashion project, inspired by fashion design Alexander McQueen. Figure drawing and portraits are an important aspect of the course at this stage, which lays the foundations for those wishing to further their studies in art and design at GCSE Level.

What support is needed?

Students must allowed the working space at home to develop their artistic skills via a range of home learning tasks. Any visits to art galleries whether locally, or in London will always benefit students that are particularly interested in the arts.

How will they be assessed?

Assessment is carried out via extended projects which are set and marked by teachers. These projects are designed to allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and technical ability in Art. Targets are set for students during the year and progress towards those targets are monitored by frequent discussions with students and by written feedback.


Exam Board: AQA

Specification Number: 8201

What will be studied?

The course provides students with the opportunity to develop visual skills and to express ideas by working through a variety of projects.There are opportunities to experiment with different media in order to explore individual strengths and preferences. A wide range of options are available and it is possible to specialise or to work in several areas.Knowledge of contemporary and historical art & design is acquired through work in school and by visiting galleries, museums, workshops and studios.

This course is suitable for students who are:

  • keen to develop their visual skills
  • committed to and love art
  • creative, enthusiastic and imaginative
  • able to sustain an investigation
  • able to enjoy visits to galleries, museums, workshops and studios
  • willing to experiment and take risks in their work willing to review their progress and     make improvements.

Learning Methods

The GCSE work includes a range of projects and workshop style sessions where girls will get to develop their skills in drawing, painting, mixed media techniques, printmaking, sculpture and Art Textiles.


Students produce a comprehensive portfolio of work which enables them to progress to level 3 courses such as A level Art and Design, A level Art Textiles or  A level Photography.

How is the course assessed?

This Art and Design course is made up of two units.

  • Component 1: Personal Portfolio in Art and Design – internally set and marked; assessed through controlled assessment.
  • Component 2: Externally Set Assignment in Art and Design – externally set theme and internally marked.

Both units are assessed using four Assessment Objectives. These can be summed up as: develop, review/experiment, record and present.

What websites are recommended?

What equipment is needed?

Basic art equipment, such as, a 2b pencil, an eraser, a pencil sharpener, fine liner, scissors and a ruler. All other equipment and materials will be provided by the school.

A Level

Exam Board: AQA

Specification Number: 7201

What will be studied?

This Art and Design course includes painting and related media, with some printmaking, textile and three dimensional work. Students are able to specialise in the areas in which they are particularly interested through individual project work. Guidance is given in the use of materials and working methods, development of visual ideas and contextual studies.