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Langold Dyscarr Community School

“A Chance to Shine' and 'Dare to Bee Different”

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Key Concepts In Art

In art, our young artists gain knowledge through practical experience. Recognising this, Langold Dyscarr Community School strive to provide an experience-rich art curriculum. The facilitation of the following key concepts aims to conceptualise the art curriculum knowledge, which builds throughout our artist’s experiential creative journey. By showing pupils how and why these interconnecting concepts are relevant to what they are doing, we aim to move towards deeper learning, understanding and enjoyment of art.





Knowledge of process and context. -  Enabling pupils to know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical development of their art forms.


Formal Elements


The formal elements of art are line, shape, tone, colour, pattern, texture, form, composition. They are the building blocks of any work of art. Deeper understanding: Pupils should have opportunities to experiment with and apply these formal elements to their own work and understand how an artist has used them to create effect or meaning.



A source in art could be an artist, designer, or craftsperson whose work influences or inspires the pupil. A source can also be a newspaper headline, a current issue, a photograph or poem, book or text that inspires visual thinking. Deeper understanding: Pupils should be able to identify and use sources to inform and inspire their artwork. They should also be shown art in juxtaposition to one another to emphasize similarities, differences, connections and interpretations.

Themes, Movements & Periods

Art movements are significant groups or periods in art that have significantly influenced visual culture. Pupils should build their knowledge of the techniques, materials and processes that artists use. Pupils learn about the history of art across the ages, making connections between ancient, traditional, modern and contemporary art forms. Deeper understanding: Pupils should begin to consider the deeper meaning behind the movement or period and how it can relate to their own lives.

Generating Ideas (Conceptual Knowledge)

The skill of designing and developing idea. - Enabling pupils to produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences.


Creativity, Ideas, Imagination & Intentions

An idea is a thought that comes from combing what is known, from experiences outside the classroom and what has been taught previously. Imagination is seeing the impossible to explore new possibilities. Deeper understanding: Pupils should develop confidence to enable the unknown to happen, to make independent choices and decisions about their artwork and understand how they can turn their thoughts into tangible outcomes.


To make art, artists work in various mediums (paints, graphite pencils, charcoal, pastels, clay etc) to realise their intentions. The choice of medium moulds and shapes the kind of art we make. Deeper understanding: Pupils should explore, manipulate and play with a range of mediums enabling all children to see how they can be successful artists.

Making Skills

(Procedural Knowledge)

The skill of making art, craft and design. - Enabling pupils to become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.

Skills, Processes & Techniques

When making art we learn through, and from the materials we are working with as part of an active process. Learning through making requires children to draw upon and apply their procedural and experiential knowledge so that they can become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art techniques. Knowledge in art is gained before, during and after the making process. Deeper understanding: Pupils artistic growth should be nurtured so that they are open to receiving guidance and constructive critical advice and in turn develop their understanding.

Evaluating (Metacognitive  Knowledge)

The skill of evaluation. - Enabling pupils to evaluate and analyse artistic works using the language of art, craft and design.


Art is a product of what we sense and experience. Pupils should develop understanding that we don’t all ‘see’ the same things, meaning that how we perceive things can be influenced and learned. Deeper Understanding: Pupils should develop the ability to look at works of art from different perspectives and think about how this forms and shapes the kind of art they make.



Reflection is part of learning. Pupils should reflect regularly so that they can learn from current or prior art experiences, with the provision of their sketchbooks. Deeper understanding: Pupils should take time to reflect on their own works of art, and those of others, in order to develop the use of kind, specific and useful feedback to support and develop learning.

Cultural Capital


Art can help us visually express our thoughts and feelings about an important issue that affects all of us. Widening children’s active experiences as they progress through school is an important step in providing rich and engaging learning across the art curriculum. Deeper understanding:  Pupils should develop a curiosity explore, experience and embrace art from different cultures in order to actively take part in and create their own cultural capital.