How to write a Scheme of Work for Art and Design.

I have used this site (so far) to share schemes of work, lessons and resources for art lessons, so I thought it could be useful to share how I go about creating those schemes of work in the first place. By ‘scheme of work’, I mean an overview or plan for a series of art and design lessons.

Firstly, I think it should be made clear that there is no right or wrong way to create a scheme of work for art. The way the scheme of work looks, how it is presented and how detailed it is, should be up to you.

However, there are a few things I do think a scheme of work should include in order to be practical and useful:

  • A learning focus (for example: Pop Art)
  • Objectives or outcomes (for example: Students will look at 2 Pop Art artists, create a series of experiments then a final outcome influenced by Pop Art)
  • Delivery methods (teacher or student led activities)
  • Assessment for Learning (for example: using data, formative and summative assessments)
  • Resources (for example: paper, paint, pens)
  • Space for adjustments (after reflecting on the scheme of work)

With those bullet points in mind, usually the first question I ask myself is: What do I want the students to learn? Depending on the year you are planning to teach, i.e. KS3, GCSE etc. and the syllabus you are following, the answer might be quite simple, for example:

  • Tone
  • Line
  • Mark making
  • Texture
  • Colour Theory
  • Printmaking

However, there might be other factors to consider, such as: What have students previously learnt? How can you build upon what has been taught already? Is there a school focus? (At the moment our school focus is oracy, so this would need to be a consideration for planning any scheme of work). Can you plan a series of lessons around just one focus, or should there be a couple used together? What will the students learn?

Once I have a starting point, I determine the length of time I will have for the project, then start to build the scheme of work.


This is an example of a basic scheme of work I have used for a GCSE art project:

Art Scheme of Work example

I include as many images as possible on my schemes of work, so I can add them to PowerPoints etc. later on – this saves a lot of repeat Googling!

Here is an empty scheme of work template you can download and use for free – I hope it’s useful!


Please let me know in the comments how you create your schemes of work? Do you do anything differently?

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