At Burlington, we see Art as essential in supporting children to develop creative thinking, in expressing ideas and understanding human expression. We believe that exploring creativity in art increases enjoyment of education and provides a release from negative influences.  The arts provide visual, tactile and sensory experiences, which are very important for the development of young children.  Art offers children the opportunity to stimulate their creativity and imagination.  It enables them to understand colour, form, texture and pattern.  We lay great emphasis on the process and not just the final product, to show the ‘journey’ the child has taken to reach their final piece.


Our Art Curriculum aims to:

  • Enable children to record from first-hand experience and from imagination, selecting their own ideas to use in their work;
  • Develop creativity and imagination through a range of complex activities;
  • Improve our children’s ability to control materials, tools and techniques;
  • Increase their critical awareness of the roles and purposes of art during different times and cultures;
  • Develop increasing confidence in the use of visual and tactile elements and materials;
  • Foster an enjoyment and appreciation of the visual arts as well as a knowledge of artists, craftspeople and designers.


Teaching and Learning

The school uses a variety of teaching and learning styles in Arts lessons. Our principal aim is to develop the children’s knowledge, skills and understanding in Arts. We ensure that the act of investigating and making something includes exploring and developing ideas, and evaluating and developing work. We do this best through a mixture of whole-class teaching and individual/group activities. Teachers draw attention to good examples as models for the other children. They encourage children to evaluate their own ideas and methods, as well as the work of others, sharing what they think and feel about them. Within lessons, we give children the opportunity to work on their own and collaborate with others on projects in two and three dimensions and on different scales. Children also have the opportunity to use a wide range of materials and resources, including ICT.


Curriculum Planning

At Burlington Infant and Nursery School we use the National Curriculum as the basis for our curriculum planning in Art and Design. Where appropriate, we make purposeful cross curricular links to enhance the children’s learning and provide a purpose for their work.

  • Literacy; we encourage children to ask and answer questions about the starting points for their work. They have the opportunity to compare ideas, methods and approaches in their own work and that of other children, and to say what they think and feel about them. Children make links between Art and Literacy through making and describing artefacts and creatures, often linked to drama and writing.
  • Numeracy; we give opportunities to develop the children’s understanding of shape and space, scale and measure through work in two and three dimensions.
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT); children use software to explore shape, colour and pattern in their work. Our children collect visual information to help them develop their ideas by using digital and video cameras to record their observations from a variety of viewpoints. Children use the internet to find out more about artists and designers.



The children self-select from a wide range of resources which enables them to create amazing, individual and unique creations.  In Nursery they learn:

  • To explore colour and how colours can be changed
  • To realise that tools can be used for purpose
  • They are beginning to develop their own preferences for forms of expression
  • To captures experiences and responses with a range of media, such as music, dance and paint and other materials or words
  • Record and explore ideas from first hand observation, experience and imagination.

Home Learning

Look at this website for some great ideas to create artwork at home: Mister Maker Make a Picture



Children in Reception are very creative and they are now confidently using all the strategies they have learnt throughout the foundation stage. They can now:

  • Explore what happens when they mix colours
  • Understand that different media can be combined to create new effects
  • Manipulate materials to achieve a planned effect
  • Use simple tools and techniques competently and appropriately
  • Select appropriate resources and adapts work where necessary
  • Select tools and techniques needed to shape, assemble and join materials together
  • Print with sponges vegetables and fruit
  • Print onto paper and textile
  • Create a repeated pattern
  • Using a variety of recycled materials to make models

"Look at my boom box"

“ I made a laptop.  I wrote the letters on sticky labels.”

The children have been learning about London. Here they are looking at photos of London landmarks e.g London Eye, Big Ben and Buckingham palace. The children are then using paint to create their own painting of their favourite landmark. 

"It's the wheel"

"I'm painting the clock tower"

"Big red boxes" - a.k.a. telephone boxes

Home Learning

Visit art museums and galleries! There are so many in London. Don’t forget you can ask your child to record their experiences of days out and special days through painting, drawing, or even using junk modelling. Try exploring different places in London and use these as inspiration for your own art work at home. Bring it in to share with the class!


Year 1

In Year 1, children build on their knowledge and skills learnt in Early Years:

  • Manipulate clay in a variety of ways, e.g. rolling, kneading and shaping
  • Explore sculpture with a range of malleable media, especially clay
  • Experiment with, construct and join recycled, natural and man-made materials
  • Explore shape and form
  • Create moods in my drawing
  • Draw lines of different shapes and thickness, using 2 different grades of pencil create different tones using light and dark
  • Show patterns and texture in my drawing
  • Use a variety of tools, inc. pencils, rubbers, crayons, pastels, felt tips, charcoal, chalk and other dry media
  • Use a sketchbook to gather and collect artwork
  • Begin to explore the use of line, shape and colour
  • Mix secondary colours and shades using different types of paint
  • Create different textures e.g. use of sawdust
  • Make tints by adding white
  • Make tones by adding black
  • Find collection of colours e.g different sorts of green, blue etc,,,

Year 1 are currently studying the artist Andy Goldsworthy. They have been inspired by his artwork and have discussed all the various materials he used to make his sculptures e.g stones, sticks, leaves and wire. The children then designed their own sculptures in their sketch books. The children edited their designs and finally they made their own sculptures using silver foil.

Home Learning

Try and make a sculpture with materials from your garden: Andy Goldsworthy: The Art of Nature


Year 2

The children in Year 2 learn to:         

  • Understand the basic use of a sketchbook and work out ideas for drawings
  • Experiment with the visual elements; line, shape, pattern and colour
  • Make as many tones of one colour as possible using primary colours and white
  • Darken colours without using black
  • Experiment with, construct and join recycled, natural and man-made materials more confidently
  • Explore the differences and similarities within the work of artists, craftspeople and designers in different times and cultures
  • Review what they and others have done and say what they think and feel about it, e.g. annotate work in a sketchbook 
  • Identify what they might change in their current work or develop in their future work
  • Record and explore ideas from first hand observation, experience and imagination
  • Manipulate clay for a variety of purposes, inc. thumb pots, simple coil pots and models
  • Use charcoal, pencil and pastels

The children have been exploring colour mixing and creating tones of a colour by adding more white. The children then used this knowledge to make their own painting entitled a “Quiet Place”. This vision was inspired from reading the book “In The Attic” as part of Book Week.


Home Learning

Check out this website for inspirational water colour paintings or even better visit the museum and see for yourself!  Watercolours