The Key Stage 3 Graphics curriculum at Waseley Hills aims to give all students comprehensive understanding of the range of visual choices that are made by designers in variety of contexts and how they influence our everyday decision making. By looking at and creating consumer profiles students gain an understanding of working to an audience. The aim here is to allow students to be able to not only decipher and understand, but also to question the visual world, making them informed and understanding consumers.
The curriculum is designed to give students a varied range of subject specific knowledge, as well as building Graphics knowledge such as typography, colour theory, shape theory and nets. Students study a variety of skills within Graphics including drawing and design that helps to build and develop fine motor muscles, improving dexterity which not only helps students to continue to become better at drawing but also can improve the carrying out of other tasks, for example improving handwriting.
The curriculum is designed to ensure that students are either building schema in one subject and cementing it in other DT subjects or vice versa. To achieve this the Graphics curriculum has been designed to work with the rotation system for DT with Food, Graphics and Resistant Materials, creating a curriculum that is both spiralled horizontally across the year but also vertically through the course of KS3.
Students begin by developing disciplinary knowledge focused on drawing and design based elements with a project designed to inform and contextualise the skills they will be using. For example, developing skills in shape and colour theory when designing a character before using it as the design on a gift card. The project is taught sequentially beginning with hand drawn elements, building on knowledge developed in KS2 Art and Design at primary before developing more technical skills. The sequence encourages students to consider a range of design options presented to them and develops their ability to adapt and refine their work. For example, students learn to create and design their own typography sample before they edit the type for their packaging.
The curriculum then moves on to build on this prior knowledge by exploring a packaging project where students develop their knowledge of key theories such as target audiences, companies and USP’s, developing the ability to be analytical, encouraging students to think carefully about the design and development of packaging and understand how designers in industry use subtle visuals to influence our choices. They will explore packaging specific to the product within the design brief, with particular focus on its effectiveness and aesthetics but also identifying common features to ensure they are using in their packaging. This then leads into analysing existing packaging and exploring what it is about the packaging that makes it effective, encouraging students to delve into their own opinions and be able to articulate them. They will use maths knowledge to design and build a range of nets to explore the physical element of packaging design, that is, how the shape of a product can impact consumer decisions. They will gain experience responding to a design brief before designing and creating their own packaging based upon the ideas they have formulated. The project builds upon the knowledge learned in year 7 while also looking at working to a brief and using consumer profiles to influence and inform visual choices made