Teaching Departments


We are a passionate staff, committed to encouraging girls to express themselves through creating art. Our engaging subject-specialist teachers are successful practising artists who will inspire your child with their insight into the world of the contemporary practitioner.

We provide tuition in drawing, painting, printmaking and ceramics to help our students discover their favourite medium and we allow them the freedom to experiment and push the boundaries with materials. All of this is underpinned by an awareness of design and art history.

Pupils will have opportunities to take part in trips and workshops, allowing them to learn and discover new things in a challenging environment.  We know that art reaches out to wide audiences. Your child’s work will be displayed at the school and in exhibitions both locally and at the prestigious Haberdashers’ Hall in London to foster a sense of pride and confidence in their work.

We deliver fun, varied and exciting lessons that encourage pupils to excel and flourish in a vibrant and focused environment. We delight in our pupils’ successes and nothing gives us greater pleasure than to help girls reach their full artistic potential.

Haberdashers Monmouth Schools artwork

Years 7-9

Year 7

In Year 7 pupils are introduced to a wide range of media and techniques.  They are encouraged to work creatively and imaginatively, underpinned by art historical research and the acquisition of observational drawing skills.

In 2017-2018 students will create large still life paintings inspired by German Expressionism.  They will also investigate the arts and crafts of Native American Indians, creating 3D ceramic pieces in response.

Year 8

In Year 8 pupils divide their time between fine art and ceramics.  The subject matter in 2017-2018 will be derived from natural forms and students will be encouraged to work from close observation.  In fine art, pupils will produce a variety of drawings in different media leading to the creation of a mixed media collage work after Cathy Savels.  In ceramics, students will produce a textured sculpture after Hitomi Hisono.

Year 9

In Year 9 pupils continue to explore the two disciplines. In fine art, further emphasis is placed upon the study of art history.  Pupils will undertake three shorter units.  In 2017-2018 pupils will create expressive flower drawings after Tony Scherman, abstract paintings after Kandinsky, and a series of self-portrait drawings from direct observation.  In ceramics, pupils will produce a series of imaginative heads inspired by Emil Alzamora.


GCSE Art and Design: OCR coursework portfolio: 60%  Externally set task assignment: 40%

At GCSE level, the department offers endorsed courses leading to awards in Fine Art and/or 3D Design (Ceramics).

All pupils work in a sketchbook and this is used to record research, comprising observational drawing from primary sources and art historical analysis.

In Fine Art/3D Design, students build on the creative experiences acquired in Years 7-9 using a very wide range of media including printmaking.

Work is annotated using the appropriate subject vocabulary.  Art historical research informs work in progress and influences outcomes, which are realised as paintings or ceramic sculptures.

All Fine Art and 3D Design pupils are encouraged to attend regular extra-curricular classes in life drawing which take place after school.

Portfolio for Fine Art:

Years 10/11: One coursework project: “Structure”

Portfolio for 3D Design (Ceramics):

Years 10/11:  One coursework project:  “Twisted”

Externally Set Task for Fine Art and 3D Design (Ceramics):

All pupils sit a 10 hour timed examination after completing sketchbook research from an early release paper.

Work is marked internally and moderated by a visiting examiner from OCR.

A level

Why study Art and Design?

A level Art and Design will give you the opportunity to develop observational skills, organisational ability, and good communication and research skills. It also fosters a willingness to experiment and ‘think outside the box’ as well as an ability to evaluate and analyse.

The Art and Design (Fine Art) course encourages a broad approach which allows students to develop experience in a number of areas while still exploring the subject in depth. It is a rigorous and challenging A level, which fits well both as a complement to other arts and humanities subjects, and also as a contrast to science subjects. This course provides an excellent grounding which can lead to further study at foundation diploma or degree level. Related career paths may include architecture, museum curation, photography, film making, television, graphic design, illustration, theatre design, interior design, fashion, textile design, art education, art therapy, to name just a few.

Throughout the course, students will develop their intellectual, imaginative, creative, communicative and intuitive powers. They will engage in sustained areas of study gaining an understanding of the inter-relationships between art, craft and design processes and an awareness of the contexts in which they operate. Through so doing, they will gain independence of mind in relation to developing their own ideas and realising their own intentions. These transferable skills, which are encouraged and developed during A level Art and Design, apply to virtually all subjects and career paths.

If you have thoroughly enjoyed Art and Design at GCSE level and are keen to extend your knowledge, skills and creativity, we would recommend this subject.

Head of Department: Mr S Huson

Course content

Board: OCR   A level Syllabus Code: (Fine Art) H601

Personal investigation
Students will be able to study in depth an aspect of the visual arts that is of particular interest to them. This study can be presented in a number of different forms but must relate to the skills and knowledge acquired during the first term.

It will also include a related study: an extended response of a guided minimum of 1000 words. This unit comprises 60% of the full A level qualification.

Extended set task
Students will respond to a question set by OCR. An early release paper will be sent to the centre and pupils will conduct visual research over a set period of time (approximately 8 weeks) leading to a 15-hour practical examination. This unit comprises 40% of the full A level qualification.

Method of assessment

As studio coursework progresses, it will be informally marked by Art and Design department teachers to provide guidance and direction for students.

Units 1 and 2 will be internally marked by Art and Design department teachers and moderated by a visiting OCR moderator.


The art department provides a range of extra-curricular opportunities to extend and develop our pupils’ skills and knowledge.

For KS3 (Years 7 – 9) Junior Ceramics Club and Throwing Club take place during one lunchtime every week. Here, pupils are able to produce a range of artefacts from Christmas decorations to animal sculptures and vessels, enter competitions and have fun.

The Art Prefect oversees competitions and group projects such as scenery painting and prop design.

Life drawing for senior students takes place on Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

Sunday workshops take place throughout the school year and enable pupils to work alongside such practising artists as Brian Gorst, Kim Williams and Kelly Campbell.

Department staff also run weekend sessions in drawing and printmaking.

The art rooms are open every lunchtime and four evenings a week to provide support for students in every year group.

The Art department is also a key contributor to outside exhibitions as follows:

The bi-annual Joint Schools Exhibition where Haberdashers’ Monmouth Schools and Monmouth Comprehensive School display the work of selected GCSE, AS and A2 artists in the Shire Hall, Monmouth.

The annual KS3 exhibition “Peg it up” which takes place during the Art in Penallt Festival weekend in Monmouthshire.

Monmouth School for Girls A level Art exhibition

Art Prefect Rhiannon takes a tour of the A level Art exhibition and talks about the A level Art course