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Calday Grange Grammar School is consistently one of the highest performing Art departments across all grammar schools in the UK.  This outstanding achievement is due to the effort, intelligence and creative thinking our students invest in their work each and every year.

Personal discovery and ownership of themes are at the heart of our continued success in Art.  We strive to enhance personalised learning and self-confidence through targeted challenges that build upon students’ prior learning.  We set high expectations for all our students, continually monitoring their progress and intervening when necessary to ensure that targets are met or exceeded.

We tailor and adapt our project themes so that students can build sequentially upon prior success; achieving through the endeavour. 

Creative-thinking and problem-solving skills are key to all aspects of our work in Art.

2015 Good Schools Guide Awards

  • Best performance by Boys taking Art & Design (Fine Art) at an English Grammar School (GCE A level)

  • Best performance by Boys taking Art & Design (Fine Art) at an English Grammar School (GCE AS level)

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Year 7


  • Autumn Term: Basic skills

Students will learn a range of technical skills this term. We begin developing shading and tonal drawing skills, moving on to developing an understanding of perspective. They will be drawing objects or scenes using the rules they have learnt. 

  • Spring Term: Landscape

Students learn how to draw landscapes using perspective techniques. Looking at artists such as Ton Schulten students create their own design for a colour paper collage. They will develop skills in colour mixing, colour theory and using paint.

  • Summer Term: Pattern and Nature 

Students will learn how to look at nature to create new patterns and shapes. They will extend their skills of drawing and painting as developed in the first two terms.

Year 8


  • Autumn Term: Monsters

Students will study how ‘monsters’ have been portrayed in modern-day culture and explore various drawing and illustration techniques looking at artists such as Tim Burton and Paride Bertolin. Additionally, pupils will develop a narrative to inform their 3D sculpture and subsequent animation. 

  • Spring Term: Architectural Structures

This project focuses on texture and involves students manipulating everyday materials to create a range of different surfaces. They will produce a final piece which will represent an architectural form using textural relief techniques. 

  • Summer Term: Portraits and Identity

Students will explore different ways in which they can express, explore and question the theme of ‘Identity’. Additionally, they will study how to accurately draw facial features and capture expressions. To compliment their practical work, students will look at a range of approaches to portraiture, including artist Mark Powell. . 



Year 9 


  • Autumn - Natural Forms and Still Life

In year 9 students are given the opportunity to select Art as a subject. We are therefore able to begin the GCSE course in year 9. Students beginning the year focusing on still life and natural forms, this helps to embed students with key drawing skills using materials. They are encouraged to create their own personal collections sculpture which is then used as a starting point to create other artwork.


  • Spring  - Interiors and Landscapes

Students are encouraged to respond to their own living spaces. Using artists such as Dawn Clements and Franz Ackerman students are encouraged to respond to their environments in new ways to create their own imaginative landscapes. We use a variety of different materials and techniques including printing, digital art and painting.  


  • Summer – Exam and Portraits

There is a mock exam each year which gives students an opportunity to research and develop a theme or idea that interests them. We encourage students to be ambitious and specialise in techniques which suit their strengths as an Artist. Students then finish the year looking at portraits and gain confidence in drawing faces. They look at artists such as Pat Perry to personalise their work further. 

Year 10

  • Autumn Term

Shop Fronts – Students explore commercial spaces and places.  This is an exciting unit where they will develop their photography skills.  Pupils will learn a variety of painting and printing skills and explore a range of creative media and artistic styles.


Micro Landscape- Students will create their own Still Life that includes a range of natural forms.  This collection is used to develop into a vibrant and interesting landscape.  We will explore a range of media including etching, pen & Ink, collage and sculpture.

  • Spring Term

Gerlach Flowers & Ferns – Students will explore flowers & ferns using textiles technology.  They will learn to translate natural textures and patterns into various stitches and knots.  Pupils will also have the opportunity to create their own hand made felt, developing it further  into a vibrant landscape.


Landscape Painting – Pupils will develop their photographic skills, collecting images of interesting natural landscapes.  These will be refined and developed into a number of studies including digital painting, acrylic paintings and reduction prints.


  • Summer Term


Exam – This is an opportunity to showcase their creative and technical skills putting together a portfolio of work that answers a particular question set.  They will also produce a study within timed sessions, becoming more familiar and confident during timed conditions.


Portrait - Pupils will explore portrait construction and development using a variety of media including paint, digital, print and collage.  They will introduce styles and methods of working that have inspired them.  

Year 11

  • Autumn Term

Personal Investigation of themes and ideas, developing a portfolio. 

Year 11 trial examination – response to an AQA past paper. 


  • Spring Term 

Final Exam AQA set starting points. Examination board set project. (40% of final GCSE grade). Controlled Assessment: a period of preparation time followed by a 10 hour practical examination. 


  • Summer Term 

Completion of coursework portfolio and preparation for final exhibition and display. (60% of final GCSE grade). 

  • Pre A Level study pack for those intending to continue to study Art to A Level.


A level

  • Year 12 


  • Autumn Term: Component 1: 

Introduction to Fine Art – Skill based units  




Sculpture and Mixed Media


  • Spring Term

Component 1:

Thematic Developments Controlled Assessment: A personal response to a previously studied theme. A period of preparation time and a five hour practical exam.

Figure in Space: Figure Drawing, Graphics and Illustration focus

Reinterpreting the Past: Practical response along with a 1000 word essay: Comparing  & contrasting 2 works of Art, contextualising information. 


  • Summer Term

Component 1: Personal Investigation – Personal Development Part 1 Response to a brief – A period of preparation time & a 10 hour moderated internal exam. 

Presentation skills - group and individual presentations 

Personal Investigation development. A practical project accompanied by a 3000 word essay that links to the students field of study. This continues through the summer and into Year 13. 

Both Fine Art and Textiles options are offered


  • Year 13


  • Autumn Term  

Component 1 : Personal Investigation: A practical project accompanied by a 3000 word essay that links to the students field of study. 


  • Spring Term 

Component 1 : Personal investigation (finishes 31 January).  Component 2: Externally set examination – A period of preparation time and a fifteen hour examination. 


  • Summer Term 

Component 2: Externally set examination – completion.


Assessment information:


Assessment takes place throughout the year in sketchbooks and online using Google Classroom.



GCSE Assessment AQA Fine Art Endorsement (8202)  

Art and Design | Subject content | Fine art

GCSE | Art and Design | Scheme of assessment


KS5: A level

A Level Assessment: 

AQA Fine Art Endorsement (7202) 

Textiles Endorsement(7204)

Student work is assessed using the four AQA assessment objectives:  

AO1:Develop ideas through sustained and focused investigations informed by contextual and other sources, demonstrating analytical and critical understanding  

AO2:Explore and select appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes, reviewing and refining ideas as work develops  

AO3: Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions, reflecting critically on work and progress  

AO4: Present a personal and meaningful response that realises intentions and, where appropriate, makes connections between visual and other elements.


Assessment takes place after each clearly defined unit or section of work and feedback is given in sketchbooks, progress logs, verbally and via Google Classroom.

Information about the course can be found here:

Art and Design | Subject content | Fine art

Art and Design | Subject content | Textile design

AS and A-level | Art and Design | Scheme of assessment


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