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Art & Design Technology

Creativity is a real strength at Duke of Kent School and the Art and Design Technology Department plays an integral role in nurturing and developing the creativity of our pupils. The Art and Design Technology Department is well resourced with a fully equipped Art Studio and Design Technology Workshop. The department has its own technician, dedicated Mac suite, DSLR cameras, a photographic studio area, a laser cutter, a CAD suite and a ceramics kiln. 

Art

Our award winning Art Department reflects the depth and breadth of the contemporary art world. In our well equipped, multi purpose Art Studio, pupils cover a range of practical skills and have the opportunity to work in a wide variety of media, from drawing, printmaking and painting, to ceramics, fabric and photography. Through their work, pupils explore art and artefacts from different times and cultures and develop an understanding of the function of art in wider society. This way of working offers a unique opportunity for developing spiritual, moral and social understanding through art.

We challenge pupils to excel in areas of the subject they feel most confident in and support them in tackling areas that they find more complex. Key to our success, particularly at GCSE level, is our focus on developing pupils understanding of the broader creative process. Pupils are able to see their work developing and changing as they progress on a journey through sustained, long term projects rather than the production of discrete artefacts. As pupils progress through the School, their responses become increasingly individual, offering numerous opportunities for self expression and pupil-led exploration.

Our extracurricular projects include an annual Artist in Residence Scheme, through which we have hosted artists as diverse as humanitarian photographer Giles Duley, architects from Heatherwick Studios, collaborative artists Oli&Suzie, and portrait painter Maureen Domoney. After school and lunchtime clubs in areas such as photography, digital media, printmaking and GCSE portfolio work, support the curriculum and offer opportunity for those who wish to further their studies independently. A lively programme of educational visits and arts based explorations outside the Art Studio, complement a dynamic and responsive curriculum.

In the words of one student on entering the Art Studio; ‘It’s great in here, you never know what's going to happen!’

Mr M Watson - Head of Art

Design Technology

Design Technology provides pupils with the skills needed to engage in a positive way with the designed and made world around us. Understanding how this world works allows pupils to harness the benefits of technology, making creative use of a variety of resources to find ways to develop and improve the world around them. 

As a subject, Design Technology is logical, creative and practical: an opportunity for pupils to apply what they learn in Maths, Science, ICT and other subjects to solve real world challenges. We bring together up-to-date technologies, contemporary design problems, and the processes, techniques and materials used to solve them. This combination is reflected in our curriculum. Through projects, pupils learn to work as individuals and as part of a team with a range of activities from disassembling a Dyson vacuum cleaner, through to challenging competitions and STEM activities.  

We present designing as an intellectual activity; following a ‘minds on’, project-based approach. Pupils go on a ‘design journey’ in each project; from developing a brief and researching ideas, to producing creative and innovative final products. This encouragement of innovation and creative problem-solving leads to a great deal of independent learning, especially higher up the School where pupils are given significantly more ownership over the direction their work takes. As well as developing their design skills, pupils are given the opportunity to develop a practical, ‘hands on’ understanding of materials, including wood, plastics, electronics and graphics. There is additional scope to work with textiles, metals and other materials, where needs arise. In our dedicated DT workshop, pupils are given supervised access to a wide range of equipment including pillar drills, scroll saws, soldering irons and a range of hand tools, as well as our laser cutter, 3D printer and dye sublimation printer. Pupils learn practical skills that are relevant to future life, developing creativity, precision and accuracy along the way.

This innovative curriculum is supported and complemented by a vibrant extra curricular programme of activities, STEM club, trips and out of School events including London’s Design Museum and SATRO Competition. Studying Design Technology at Duke of Kent School provides great progression opportunities to AS, A Levels, apprenticeships and beyond. This has the potential to lead into careers such as architecture, design, engineering, publishing or as an entrepreneur: setting up your own business or developing new products or resources for the future.

 Mr M Usher - Head of Design Technology