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The Art & Design department at Guru Nanak Sikh Academy has two large teaching rooms that are rarely quiet.  They are in constant use, filled with young artists expressing their ideas throughout the day.  The department’s open door policy allows students to use the facilities all-day if they wish. 

The rooms are equipped with 11 PC’s and 8 laptops.  The use of ICT in Art is encouraged with the availability of digital cameras that students can borrow as well as a digital camcorder to explore the digital aspect of the creative world.  Students work in up-to-date software such as Photoshop and Picasa producing contemporary images.

Students work is celebrated with accolades like Artist of the Month in the school newsletter.  Students are also given the opportunity to attend ART DROP and have the Art Mentor Program allowing them to discuss their work with an ART MENTOR.

The Art department regularly organizes visits to Galleries and Museums in London giving students the opportunity to experience city life and see some of the world’s most celebrated masterpieces.  Our recent visits have been to the galleries at Buckingham Palace, the Tate Modern, the Natural History Museum and many more.

At the end of the academic year all students work is celebrated at the Whole School Creative Arts Exhibition.  It is here that students are given the opportunity to meet and work with artists who run workshops which in the past have been hugely successful.

Art at Key Stage 3

In Year 7, students focus on learning and applying their knowledge of the following topics:

  • The Key Elements of Art & Design:  Line, Colour, Tone, Texture, Pattern, Shape and Form.
  • Still Life
  • Weaving

In Year 8 we further develop the skills acquired in Year 7 whilst working on a yearlong project ‘Our Globe’.  This project is broken down in to mini projects where students explore the following:

  • Continents, Countries and Cities
  • Flags
  • Oceans, Rivers and sea life
  • National animals and Flowers
  • Currency
  • Languages

By Year 9 students are encouraged to work on more independent ideas through the following topics:

  • Pop Art
  • Curious Creatures


Students are finally assessed on a portfolio project where they are given a range of themes to select from.  They then work in the four assessment objectives:

  • Observations – record visual ideas,
  • Artist Study – develop their ideas with the study of an artist,
  • Experimentation - refine their idea and the use of media,
  • Final outcome – the opportunity to present their response to the theme.

Students are assessed through the year using written and verbal feedback.  This is documented in each student’s sketchbook on an assessment sheet that tracks their progress where clear targets are also set.  In addition to this students self-assess their work and are encouraged to peer assess tasks.

Key Stage 4 - GCSE Art                                                                    

The GCSE course aims to promote an in-depth understanding of Art and Design.  Students develop areas of experience covered in year 7 to 9 as well as learning new skills; progressively students are encouraged to apply these skills independently to themes set over the course.  You will have the opportunity to experiment with different media in order to explore your strengths and preferences. The aim of the course is to develop your visual language skills and for you to build a comprehensive portfolio of work to progress to further courses or employment.

This course is suitable for those who are:

  • Keen to develop their observational skills
  • Creative, enthusiastic, and imaginative
  • Able to sustain an investigation
  • Able to make use of visits to galleries and museums
  • Willing to experiment and take risks with their work
  • Willing to review their progress and make improvements

You should also have a commitment to, and love of the subject and feel motivated to develop your visual skills and express your ideas in working through projects and assignments.  If this sounds like you then our GCSE Art and Design is the ideal subject for you.


  • Unit 1 – Personal Portfolio in Art and Design (60%)
  • Unit 2 - Externally Set Assignment in Art and Design (40%)

Each unit is assessed separately out of 80 marks and uses the 4 assessment objectives of:

  • Develop ideas through investigations informed by contextual and other sources demonstrating analytical and cultural understanding; 
  • Refine ideas through experimenting and selecting appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes;
  • Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to their intentions in a visual form;
  • Present a personal, informed and meaningful response

The final examination takes place in the form of a 10 hour timed test.  Prior to the exam students have preparation time which allows them to investigate the theme assigned.  All units are externally moderated.