Whether it was Confucius, or not, who stated that ancient proverb: ‘I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.’ – the philosophy of Art Education here at the Falcons School for Boys is very much based on that of ‘doing’. In the age of digitisation, it is reassuring to see the fascination children still manifest when they explore and learn using natural materials and their own hands to make and create. The Falcons art studio is a place where our boys are free to explore, investigate, discover make and create; rising to every challenge presented to them. Whether it is working with paint, clay, collage or a piece of charcoal, the sense of awe and wonder continues to fill the art studio.
We are all born with extraordinary powers of imagination, intelligence, feeling, intuition, spirituality, and of physical and sensory awareness. It is our aim here in the Art department to unleash and fulfil this potential in our boys. As Leonardo da Vinci said, ‘Learning how to see…’ is what an artist strives for and realizing that ‘everything connects to everything else.’
The teaching of Art and Design at The Falcons is based on providing a firm foundation on which visual literacy and natural creativity can develop fully. It follows a skills-based approach to learning using the processes of drawing, painting, sculpture, collage, printing and textiles. Within these processes, the boys are shown how to develop their understanding of the formal elements of Art; colour, line, tone, shape, pattern, texture and space. Once equipped with skills and an understanding of the formal elements, the boys have the freedom to be as creative and imaginative as they can be.
The boys attend one hour long session a week. For those who wish to spend more time can opt to join Art club which runs once a week. There is also a Scholarship class for boys who show artistic potential and who wish to pursue projects in more detail.
Gallery Visits and Trips
The boys work with a variety of different media and are inspired by the work of great artists, both past and present. Throughout the year groups, the boys study and explore a wide variety of artists, art movements; different cultures and genres. Lessons are complimented by workshops and tours are arranged at major galleries, museums and cathedrals. At The Falcon, the boys are encouraged to consider why people create Art and why it is important. The pupils look at the wealth of knowledge and ideas that have gone before us in the world of Art and how they connect to contemporary pieces, including children’s work. The study of artists’ work is often an important starting point for children and broadens and stimulates their own creativity.
Collaboration is encouraged whenever possible and art projects are often cross- curricular and linked to other subjects such as History and RS to make the subject more relevant to the boys.
The Falcons School for Boys is an official registered centre of Arts Award – a framework for children and young people to develop as artists and arts leaders.
Arts Award is managed by Trinity College London in association with Arts Council, England. The mission of Arts Award is to support children to enjoy a wide variety of art forms, experience cultural activities, develop creative and leadership skills and achieve a national qualification. By the time the boys reach Year 7/8, many will have achieved the Artsaward Bronze medal.