Key Stage 3
Year 7, 8 and 9 pupils remain with one teacher for at least a timetabled year and work on at least 3 units of work a year with one being a Fine Art Unit, another a Textiles Unit and the third being a 3D Unit. The department offers a whole learning experience as pupils are encouraged to develop their practical skills, understand their work in relation to Art History and to evaluate their creative learning experience. Each activity is supported by examples of good practice, a short class discussion and a practical demonstration from the Art Teacher. Pupils find Art fun and enjoyable and their skills develop rapidly. Throughout KS3 pupils will make a weaving, a tie-dye with embellishment and a batik. Each year pupils follow a Welsh based unit of work. For example Year 7 complete a colourful relief card unit based on Welsh Chapels.
Key Stage 4
GCSE Textiles, is examined through WJEC. Textiles offers stimulating and exciting units of work in a wonderfully friendly and relaxed atmosphere. Students study a coursework portfolio unit that makes up 60% of the marks for their GCSE and then pupils complete an externally set exam that makes up 40% of their GCSE mark. Students are allowed to choose their own topic from a list of around 20 starting points on the exam paper. Over the two years students become more courageous and adventurous and they are soon producing work of extraordinary quality. We frequently have 20 -30 pupils successfully studying Textiles at GCSE level. Pupils will experiment with a wide range of processes such as embroidery, tie dye, batik (hot wax), painting and oil pastels on fabric as well as some more experimental techniques such as burning, melting and bonding materials.
Key Stage 5
AS/A2 Textiles is available to open-minded, experimental and adventurous pupils. During Year 12 pupils study a coursework portfolio which is based on skills development and this makes up 100% of the AS mark. Pupils will be introduced to more new techniques including digital printing on fabric and fusing fabrics as well as further experimenting with embroidery, dyeing and printing. During Year 13 pupils study a Personal Investigation based project and this makes up 60% of the A2 mark and then an Exam which makes up the other 40% of the A2 mark. During the Exam, pupils choose one from a range of starting points on which they can base their artwork. Each year we have an A Level Art Show during the summer term to promote the achievements of the students and the school. The show is always visually exciting and never fails to impress the public and the pupil population of the school.
Words used in visual language are displayed around all three art rooms and pupils are encouraged to involve Welsh artists in their research work when relevant. Welsh artists have served residencies in the department in the past and all art pupils are encouraged to enter Welsh based art competitions such as the National Eisteddfod and the Urdd.
Textiles is a very strong subject that tends to attract delightful pupils. Examination results are well above local and national figures. We benefit from positive feedback about the pupils achievements from both the pupils and parents.
Textiles is equipped with fabrics, embroidery and sewing facilities and frequently accesses the facilities used by 3D and Fine Arts. Each teacher is aided by electronic learning devices and rich, vibrant and colourful pupils work that covers the walls and ceilings to inspire and motivate the all art students.