Focus on Art

I hope you all had a wonderful summer and welcome back to a new school year.
We'll be covering SMSC in school subjects this year and the first on the list is Art - I hope you enjoy the Newsletters and if you know anyone who would like to subscribe, please let them know.

New School Year, New Ofsted Framework bringing new challenges in collecting evidence of Personal Development and SMSC.

Over the years, GridMaker has proved time and again just how perfect it is for gathering evidence across the curriculum and so it was easy to adapt it for the changes.

In addition to the SMSC Grid, we have Grids for British Values, RSE, Mental Health and Physical Well Being, Careers (Gatsby) and PSHE.

GridMaker allows all of these values to be monitored in one activity which means that it only takes about a minute to complete and it’s gathering evidence of provision, not only for SMSC but also for the intent and quality of Personal Development across the curriculum.

There is no extra cost! Gridmaker is £295 for Primary and £495 for Secondary - the same price it’s always been. (Prices quoted are for an annual subscription and exclude 20% vat).

Take a look at our Newsletter Grid and then hit the button below to request a free trial or give me a call for an over the phone demonstration.


Flower Power

When I was little my Grandad grew Peonies and when the petals dropped I used to rub them on paper to make pictures.  Here's a more sophisticated way of making paint from flower petals


That's Handy

Using imagination and creativity in learning certainly applies here - so many creative ideas from just drawing around your hand.


Grab a Brush, or a Dish Sponge

Who needs a paint brush? Here's a list of household items for the more unusual artists among us.


Oils Well

Leonardo Da Vinci used oil paints that he made by hand - not an easy job as you can see from this video.


How Much?

Art invokes an emotional response - love, hate maybe.  For the people who bought these paintings, it must have been love.

Self-Evaluation Innovation


The Ofsted self-evaluation form is long gone - creating one isn't easy.  However, iAbacus has the Ofsted framework (based on the new 2019 EIF) pre-loaded into a simple four step process making it easy to create a whole school, departmental and individual self evaluation and action planning - Take iAbacus on a 30 day free trial

Art for Life

As a subject, art is so much more important than just a GCSE option. Of course, someone with real artistic talent can find employment and put that talent to good use, however, drawing and painting is a great hobby to have and some find it therapeutic which is good for mental health. Here are some examples:



Harriet Riddell is a very talented artist, however, there's not a paint brush in sight as she uses her sewing machine to create portraits and pictures on her travels around the World.



I am proud to know Carole Russell and own one of her paintings. This wonderful lady rediscovered her talent for painting many years after leaving school.  She now paints commissions and is a winner of the Holbrook Prize.

and finally........


Everyone has an opinion and in this digital age it seems nothing stops an opinion.  However, the street art commissioned by Broxtowe Borough Council seems to have created an overwhelmingly positive reaction from the community. So much better than looking at a brick wall!

Icons of Beeston from left to right: Paul Smith Fashion Designer, Richard Beckinsale, actor and Edwin Starr, singer.


Bees in Beeston, Nottingham

Photographs used with the kind permission of Broxtowe Borough Council