Curriculum Overview – Year 9
The Year 9 Photography curriculum is designed to act as a foundation year for the GCSE Photography course. The introduction to Photography enables students to learn how to use the camera as a tool and to develop their artistic practice using photography as a medium. Students are introduced to a range of techniques and processes and become familiar with the assessment criteria and the process of how marks are awarded at GCSE. Students are encouraged to work experimentally, recording their ideas in a sketchbook (or electronic version), and they create a number of photo-shoots that make up a portfolio of outcomes based around themes such as ‘landscape’, ‘food’ and ‘close up’. While exploring, developing and refining their photography skills, students learn how to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of art and design in a wider context, through their independent research and investigation of other artists, designers and practitioners.
Curriculum Overview – Year 10
Photography teaching in Year 10, is tailored to individual students and their needs. Students are introduced to new topics and encouraged to work independently; enquiring, researching, reflecting, and evaluating their own progress as their work develops. Students are encouraged to actively engage in the creative process and projects are mapped out to cover all the key skills that are required. The students develop and embed the skills learned in Year 9 by continuing to explore and acquire a variety of processes and techniques but with intent and conviction in relation to their own topic and the research they have done; we want students to become confident in taking risks and learn from experience when exploring and experimenting with ideas, processes and techniques. Students record their ideas and observations, through drawing and written annotations, in sketchbooks and digitally, and are encouraged to talk and write more engagingly about their ideas, informed by their contextual research.
Curriculum Overview – Year 11
As in Year 10, the teaching in Year 11 is tailored to individual students and their needs. Students are again encouraged to actively engage in their own creative process, in order to become effective and independent thinkers, and are able to evidence this through their visual exploration of a theme supported by written analytical research. The focus this year is to prepare students for the Externally Set Task (worth 40% of the overall mark), where students work independently in response to a starting point, stimulus, theme or design brief set by the examining board (AQA). There is a strong emphasis on critical understanding and self-evaluation, where practical experimentation and developmental work is embedded within a personal, sustained and meaningful photography investigation. An emphasis is on independent learning so teaching is supportive, but not leading, once the examination unit has begun.