This is a colourful, user-friendly, practical training and support book underpinned by research and practice to help you enjoy, and confidently teach, art, craft and design in the primary school, whether in the UK or beyond. It is not a scheme, but it will equip you to write your own bespoke schemes forever, whatever national curricula may be in place. However, the contents of the Art Tree are in sync with the English national curriculum for art and design.

Who is this book for? Well, you may be a student, newly qualified or established teacher or subject leader. You may be a terrified novice or even a confident and experienced artist; or a senior leader deciding policy and designing curricula, planning for staff. This book is for you.

Importantly, you can use the Art Tree analogy to teach children about the subject.

There is something in here for everyone.

Why the ‘Art Tree’?

I have depicted art, craft and design as a tree to give a visual representation of the whole subject area. In using this botanical metaphor, I am adopting a ‘rhizomatic’ approach to help unravel what can be quite a complicated and vast area of learning and make it easier to grasp.

Often situated in forests, trees have roots, a trunk, branches, and leaves, and after their flowers have fallen, have fruit or cones which carry seeds. Trees can be seen above ground for birds and animals to enjoy, and have unseen roots under the ground, from which they draw nourishment from the soil. They are fed by sunshine and rain and live in a climate which influences the kind of weather they experience, and therefore their growth. And importantly, children find themselves sitting under the shade of the Art Tree, hopefully benefiting from all its protection, creative energy and goodness.

I use all these tree parts, and the tree’s environment, to illustrate the various aspects of art, craft and design, taking each part separately and elaborating on it in more detail throughout the book. Examples of children’s artworks from my art days with them (including reception and post primary), and some of my own/other teachers, are generously dispersed throughout, illustrating the practical application of this approach.

Progression/Mastery Tables for All Media

Importantly, there are year-by-year mastery tables (Years 1-6) for every medium (drawing, painting, printing, texture work, sculpture and digital media).

Deep Dive – Ofsted

The book subtitle “Teaching Art, Craft and Design: Primary Deep Dive” (for key stages one and two) means that not only am I looking in depth at the subject of art, craft and design, but I am situating it within the context of primary teaching. The ‘deep dive’ reference means that my coverage will be extensive and thorough, as well as referencing and supporting the deep dive Ofsted subject inspection process for art and design.

Digital Resources

There are substantial digital support resources available as part of the Art Tree training book and an Art Tree Training Book Pinterest board with over 550 creative practitioners which are referenced in the book. I strongly recommend you buy these digital resources: they will save you huge amount of time and enable you to easily cascade its knowledge and support down to colleagues and children.

Book, Digital Resources and Subject Leader Zoom Support Session

I am offering a more substantial CPD package for subject leaders whose schools buy the book and digital resources. This is a three-hour 1-to-1 introduction/Q&A support session taking place on ZOOM to help your art and design subject leader get started with the Art Tree method in the primary school. The ZOOM training takes place at a time suited to both the subject leader and myself.

TIP: To get the most out of the ZOOM training, it’s best if the subject leader has properly familiarised themselves with the book and digital resources first and emails some of their queries through to me before the training. We can take a break halfway through the three hours if necessary/desired e.g. 90 minutes training, 30-45 minute break, 90 minutes training.

To keep informed of publication release and how to buy the book, digital resources and ZOOM training package please click here and email your details to be added to my e-news list.