Art & Design Technology
Junior Art and Design
Art and Design is important for all pupils, particularly those who have Specific Learning Difficulties. It can be crucial to their development and provides an opportunity to increase their understanding of the world.
Art and Design lessons give our pupils opportunities to feel a sense of achievement. At Fairley House we value Art and Design as a vehicle through which children can express their ideas, thoughts and skills. Unlike many other subject areas, Art and Design does not rely heavily on reading or writing skills. Our children often have a special gift for expressing themselves in art and we value the enormous contribution they make to enhance our school environment.
Art and Design lessons engage, inspire and challenge our pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own creations. Pupils are given opportunities to develop their skills using a variety of mediums and techniques. As pupils progress, they begin to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of how Art and Design contributes greatly to our surroundings and culture.
Junior Design Technology
Design Technology is an important part of the Fairley House curriculum, linking convincingly with other subject areas and special provision therapies. Its practical nature, underpinned by concepts and understanding, is inclusive and suits different learning styles. It aims to increase pupils’ levels of skill, knowledge and understanding and, on a personal level, can increase confidence, enabling pupils to work independently, generate and use their own ideas, explore their creativity and reflect upon outcomes.
At Fairley House, pupils may have poor motor skills and difficulties with sequencing tasks or planning. Many have difficulties paying attention. The practic, al environment of Design Technology offers an ideal context in which to develop the necessary strategies to overcome such problems.
Similarly, pupils who struggle with verbal or written tasks may have strong spatial ability or simply a natural bent for practical and three-dimensional work. For many, therefore, Design Technology provides an opportunity to shine and a basis upon which to build talents.
We attempt to foster an environment where every pupil experiences success, can explore their creativity and can recognise their achievements. The creation of an artwork is a concrete way in which pupils experience success and can be proud of their efforts.
Senior Department Art & Design
Art and creative activity are vital to a child’s development and wellbeing and this is reflected in the value placed on art at Fairley House. We benefit from a well-equipped, magnificent new art and design studio with a kiln room.
Art provides dyslexic children with the opportunity to express themselves, gain confidence and experience a sense of achievement. The pupils are encouraged to explore a wide range of materials and techniques in both two and three dimensions. All learning modes are accommodated through visual, tactile and other sensory experiences, helping to develop imagination and the ability to communicate ideas and meaning. Children are encouraged to keep sketchbooks to record observations, gather information and develop ideas.
We are located near Tate Britain and in easy reach of other major London galleries.
Workshops with practising artists help children enjoy the art of the present as well as studying the art of the past. The pupils at Key Stage 3 also have the wonderful opportunity to work with artists from the Creative Mentors Foundation.
Senior Department Design Technology
Design Technology is a popular subject which allows pupils to utilise a range of skills, preparing them to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies.
Children have the chance to enjoy working with traditional materials such as textiles, wood, metals and plastics, as well as electrical control, mechanics and structures with increasing opportunities to experiment with smart materials. We have also introduced CAD/CAM. The emphasis is on a hands-on approach, encouraging children to seek creative solutions, whilst developing practical and problem-solving skills.
The challenging curriculum overlaps with other subject areas, including Maths, Science, Art and ICT.
Cooking has become an area of much greater focus in the National Curriculum and this is being reflected in the programme of study this year.
Key Stage 3 pupils learn to analyse existing products, to understand the consumers’ needs, and to study contemporary designers. This all helps to develop an understanding of the constructed world and their place in it.
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All children at Fairley House have lessons in Music and Drama. The approach is multi-sensory and the aim is to instil a sense of enjoyment and fun in both of these subjects. It allows children with different learning styles the opportunity to access the subjects in their own unique way. Music and drama lessons give pupils the freedom to express their ideas in lots of imaginative and creative ways.
Children develop a practical understanding of each subject as well as exploring the many skills needed to be a good musician or actor. These include good co-ordination, quick reactions and good listening skills. They are also encouraged to work together as a team, which builds confidence, concentration and social awareness.
All children are encouraged to sing as it benefits language, breath control, voice projection and communication skills. Fairley House also has its own internal Music Medals & Acting Award scheme to encourage solo performances in various settings.
Each year, Key Stage 1, 2 and 3 pupils give performances to the rest of the school and parents. This often includes work they have created and developed themselves. Pupils often feel an incredible sense of achievement and pride after performing and this really helps to boost confidence and self-esteem. Outside events also take place, such as trips to theatres and concert halls. Recently these have included visits to the National Theatre for a backstage tour and a visit to the Royal Opera House to see a performance of Georges Bizet’s Carmen. Past visits include the Globe Theatre, Polka Theatre, Unicorn Theatre and the Schools’ Prom concerts at the Royal Albert Hall.
Children can learn many instruments, including the drums, guitar (acoustic and electric), flute, clarinet, saxophone, recorder, voice, piano and violin. Performances are encouraged in assemblies and at Prize Giving at the end of each term.
After-school and break-time clubs offer an opportunity to take part in other music and drama activities and, depending on numbers, these may include Recorder Club, Singing Club, Ukulele Club and Drama Club.
Creative Mentors Foundation
Fairley House has been working alongside the Creative Mentors Foundation since 2008.
Our music mentors are professional postgraduate dyslexic musicians who come to Fairley House during the autumn term to work with and inspire pupils musically.
They work alongside teachers in lessons, often creating their own projects, and also teach music at break times for pupils who enjoy doing extra music.
Pupils often showcase the work they have done with the creative mentors at Prize Giving.
Pupils also engage in exciting educational workshops on site. Recent workshops have included A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Macbeth.