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Art & Design
Waingels believes that an Art and Design curriculum is essential to the cultural well-being of our students. Through the observation and exploration of the visual, they can gain a greater understanding of the world that they live in. Students are enabled to become independent learners through an engaging and challenging curriculum which aims to equip students with the knowledge to develop their creative ability. The chance for children to express themselves creatively is highly valued and encourages our students to become resourceful, innovative and creative adults.
Years 7 & 8
Students are able to engage with a number of Art and Design techniques throughout year seven and eight. Textiles, ceramics, graphics, painting, photography, drawing, printmaking woodwork, metalwork and CAD are all offered as individual projects. Students’ enjoyment of these specialisms is reflected in the popularity of our extra curricular activities and numbers of students choosing to study Art and Design beyond Year Nine.
Year 9 – Transition Year
At the end of year eight, students have a choice of creative subjects to study. Within the Art and Design curriculum subjects on offer are Textiles, Graphics, 3D Design and Fine Art. Giving the students the opportunity to study a choice of these subjects in a more focused way leads to faster progress, and an excellent foundation if students chose to continue the subject into GCSE.
Years 10 & 11
At GCSE students can chose to study Photography, Fine Art, Graphics, Textiles and 3D Design. The courses are scaffolded in such a way to provide a secure knowledge of basic processes and techniques (for example Photoshop and Screen Printing in Graphics). Ideas are generated from looking at, and being inspired by the work of Artists and Makers. We encourage students to pursue highly personalised themes in their coursework to allow them to engage fully in their creative endeavours.
The department is well resourced, with interactive Smart Boards, a dedicated Apple Mac suite, printing press, dark room, kiln, screen-printing facilities, laser cutter, two fully equipped workshops, Art and Design library and specialist Graphics and Textiles studios. We also have a rolling exhibition space in the Community zone, which is curated by our Art Technician.
We follow the OCR Art and Design specification which can be found here. Students are supported through invited intervention sessions and we like to keep the studios open as much as possible for students to be able to work in and access resources after school.
Careers & Future Study
The creative industries are some of the UK’s most successful, varied and fastest growing sectors. They provide millions of fulfilling job opportunities, some of which will be explored within the curriculum. Please see our new Art and Design Alumni Page and the following excellent websites featuring careers in the Arts:
Photography and Art, Craft and Design are currently taught at A Level at Waingels. With our excellent facilities and track record of success you can be confident that taking an Art A level at Waingels will provide you with an in-depth, enjoyably and challenging study of a creative area of your choice. A highly personalised coursework project leads to exciting and authentic outcomes for students. For example, last year a behind the scenes tour of Reading Football club led to a dynamic design for six posters celebrating the clubs history. And a trip to the Vision exhibition at the Science museum resulted in an A*Textiles project looking at the eye and mark making. An exquisite sketchbook was produced alongside the project with annotation in braille so that visually impaired audiences could access it.
Art, Craft and Design
Our Art, Craft and Design course aims to support all creative learners in their chosen area of study. Painting, printmaking, drawing, sculpture, textiles and graphics are all available to our students to pursue, with many opting for more mixed media approached to their work. A designated sixth form classroom is available for students to work in during their free periods.
Researching the work of other photographers, past and present, and finding your own voice are some of our broad aims for the Photography A Level. The course allows students to explore a wide range of photographic skills including non-lens based media and techniques, developing and printing black and white (B&W) film as well as studio techniques and location photography. Students will learn the importance of formal elements of design in composition, and the role of photography in visual communication in historical and contemporary contexts.
Both courses are delivered through OCR and have a 3000 word Related Study that runs alongside the course.
Extra Curricular opportunities
We are very proud of the range of creative activities that students can take part in at Waingels. We have a very popular Craft Club that runs all year, where students have made dream catchers, learnt to knit and cross stitched cool quotes. Alongside that we run a range of one off activities that students at various years can get involved with. For example, helping create the school play set or designing large-scale work to be included on the hoarding for the River Thames festival.
A range of creative competitions are help every year. Last year two photography competitions and a 3D competition proved very popular with parents, staff and students getting involved. Outcomes are often displayed on the TV screens around the school and in our dedicated Art exhibition space. We are also looking to expand on our Art Ambassador scheme this year, to recruit more students in helping us spread the word about how fantastic Art subjects are and to help with exhibitions and other events we run.
Please have a look at vast array of creative work we get up to in the Art and Design department at our blog: waingelsart.wordpress.com. Keep your eyes peeled for new Twitter and Instagram accounts coming this year.