Department Ethos

At Cams Hill we believe passionately about the universal human need for visual communication. Central to this is our commitment to provide an environment in which pupils will develop aesthetic and evaluative skills: the ability to express themselves artistically. Pupils will be introduced to a variety of media, techniques and critical studies that develop, challenge, enhance and contribute to creative thinking, problem solving and individual expression.

Art is an adventure into an unknown world, which can be explored only by those willing to take risks. Mark Rothko


Learn more about Art at Key Stage 3

In Years 7, 8 & 9 pupils receive 2 x one-hour lessons per fortnight of Art & Design. Our Key Stage 3 curriculum has been designed by members of the department and it meets the requirements of the new 2014 National Curriculum.  Art & Design in Years 7 – 9 is taught in a way that is both accessible and challenging by focussing upon pupils mastering The Formal Elements which are the key components used to make a piece of artwork. (These are line, shape, form, tone, texture, pattern and colour). We review and develop the curriculum regularly, ensuring that pupils are given every opportunity to deepen their understanding and broaden their range of skills in order to prepare them for the Key Stage 4 GCSE courses.

As a practical subject pupils are expected to wear work shirts during painting and ‘messy’ lessons as directed by the teacher. We ask for a voluntary contribution of £5 per pupil in each year towards the cost of sketchbooks and materials.

In addition we offer enrichment extra-curricular activities in Art Club and Photography club for Key Stage 3 pupils.

Programme of Study for Key Stage 3

Year 7 
Autumn Formal elements
Spring Natural forms and mark making
Summer Pop Art and everyday objects
Year 8
Autumn Revisit formal elements
Spring Portraiture
Summer Sealife Project
Year 9
Autumn Day of the Dead
Spring Pop Art
Summer Introduction to GCSE

Learn more about Art at Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 pupils receive 5 x one hour Art, Craft & Design lessons per fortnight. Key Stage 4 pupils are offered extra-curricular Art & Design sessions throughout the week and we also seek to enrich the curriculum through taking pupils on visits to post-16 providers and art galleries and spaces.

GCSE Art, Craft & Design provides pupils with a wide range of creative, exciting and stimulating opportunities to explore their interests in ways that are both personally relevant and developmental in nature. It is a strong foundation for further progression to Art & Design related courses such as A-level Art & Design and enhanced vocational and career pathways.

We are also pleased to offer GCSE Photography where pupils receive 5 x one-hour lessons per fortnight.  Pupils are introduced to many aspects of Photography but the course is predominantly digital. Pupils studying GCSE Photography have access to our new refurbished computer room which houses 12 PCs with the latest Adobe Photoshop software.  We also have a fully equipped Photography studio enabling pupils to experiment and develop their skills in Photography further.

As a practical subject pupils are expected to wear work shirts during painting and ‘messy’ lessons as directed by the teacher. We ask for a contribution of £10 per pupil in each year towards the cost of sketchbooks and materials.

Key Stage 4 pupils are provided with a new sketchbook for each project and the exam which is funded through the pupil contributions.

GCSE details

We follow the AQA full course GCSE syllabus. You can find a link to that here

Programme of Study for Key Stage 4

Year 10

Pupils work on their Unit 1 – Portfolio of work. They complete two projects. Topics for these projects change annually and have included Organic/Mechanic, Portraits, Japanese Animals, Coastal Environments, Science in Art, Fantastic and Strange.

Year 11

Continuation of portfolio of work.

January onwards pupils begin their Unit 2 exam preparation.

Extra-curricular opportunities

We offer a range of enrichment activities to engage pupils’ interest and help them to develop their practical skills, including:

  • Lower school Art Club – Years 7-9 – Wednesday 1515-1630
  • Lower school Photography Club – Years 7-9 – Wednesday 1515-1630
  • School production/Rock challenge design club – TBC
  • Year 10 and 11 – Portfolio Catch-Up Sessions – Monday, Thursday and Friday 1515-1630 (speak to your teacher for more info and 1800 finishes.)

We also run a series of field trips and photography walks to relevant places of interest to link with the Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 curriculum. These have included:

  • Southampton City Art Gallery – Year 7
  • Brighton Pavilion – Year 8
  • Seal Life Centre, Bournemouth – Year 9
  • Natural History Museum, London – Year 10
  • V & A, London – Year 10
  • Saatchi Gallery, London – Year 10
  • The National Portrait Gallery, London – Year 10
  • Pitt Rivers and Natural History Museum, Oxford – Year 10
  • Harry Potter Studios – Year 11

Links and downloads

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