Department description

The ICHS Art and Design curriculum is designed to develop habits of practice and habits of thought, so that all our pupils are equipped with creative and critical dispositions that they can apply to any creative practice they wish to pursue. We aim to deepen our pupils’ love of creativity and expand their appreciation of visual culture in its various forms.

Our KS3 curriculum journey engages pupils with skills, techniques and processes from across art and design disciplines, through a mix of guided instruction and self directed, independent, creative freedom. Pupils engage with a variety of media, from drawing, painting and print making to 3D modelling and digital design. The aim is for pupils to gain experience across a range of visual languages, to develop their skills in these languages and to explore a variety of forms of expression. Alongside this practical development, pupils acquire theoretical and disciplinary knowledge through encounter with the works of artists and designers across disciplines and cultures. These encounters take place both in the classroom and first-hand, through school trips and visiting artists. As a result, pupils become skilled at engaging with art and design in a reflexive and critical way and with articulating their perspectives accurately and with authority. For example, all pupils will gain an understanding of the art historical progression through traditional and modern art to postmodernism, and learn to relate art works they encounter to this. In this way, pupils will know of the institutions that structure and organise the world of art and design beyond secondary school.

Art and Design (AQA exam board) is an optional subject at GCSE, with a good number of pupils choosing to pursue the course at this level. Projects build on an extend the foundations laid at KS3, with the emphasis on self-directed inquiry and independence as the course progresses. Pupils develop their practical skills to a more advanced level and learn to formulate a sophisticated understanding of art, design and visual culture. They also become well-versed in the process of developing an art project, from initial research through to a practised final outcome.  We also hold an annual visit to an art gallery or museum to supplement class-based study. 

Our Sixth Form students produce ambitious, large scale works across a variety of media, and these are proudly displayed around the school. We encourage our students at this level to undertake deep, critical research into their independently chose subject matter and to draw on and further explore the full range of visual resources at their disposal to realise powerful, engaging and through provoking projects.  As a result of their experiences and the work produced on this course, many of our students successfully apply to pursue a creative discipline at higher education level, with Architecture a particularly popular pathway. 

We draw on research in teaching and learning, employing a range of pedagogical approaches to immerse our pupils in the full range of activities that are conducive to productive creative endeavour, from discursive collaboration to quiet, contemplative reflection. As a result of their Art and Design education, ICHS pupils will enter the adult world ready to utilise their creative and critical abilities to address the issues we all face, and with faculties of thought and expression that will help them to live happy, fulfilled and fully examined lives.


Art Subject Links

A level Assessment

AS AssessmentArt2Day Artcyclopedia National Gallery National Portrait Gallery Royal Academy Victoria and Albert Museum Tate

Web Links

National Gallery NPG ArtcyclopediaRoyal AcademyVAMArtcyclopediaHistory Link 101TerminartorsNPGTateArt 2 day


Department description

The Physical Education department offers expertise across a number of differing sporting areas and in GCSE and A Level PE. On site facilities include a Sports Hall, an artificial cricket strip, two football pitches, a running track (summer) and a hard court area. The school also uses the excellent facilities at Oakfield Parkonians, the school’s Old Boys' Association for matches and special occasions.


Sport Hall​

The Sports Hall has four indoor cricket nets, four badminton courts, a full size basketball court, with two small courts and also has provision for volleyball, 5-a-side football and tennis. In addition there are indoor changing facilities for people using the sports hall, and outdoor changing rooms for the sports field. There is also a fitness/weights suite, a classroom and viewing gallery for the main Sports Hall.​


The Core P.E curriculum is allocated 2 hours of high quality learning a week in KS3 and 3 hours over a fortnight in year 9 and KS4.  It is planned to ensure that all pupils receive a well-balanced physical experience catering for all abilities. Currently, emphasis within the teaching programme is on skills of the major sports: football, rugby, basketball, handball, badminton in the autumn and spring terms, and cricket, athletics and tennis in the summer.  The curriculum also includes Dance and Gymnastics at KS3.

Students in our sixth form also take part in 1 hour of Physical Education per week.

GCSE and A-Level​

GCSE pupils are studying OCR New 9-1 course from September 2016 for the year 10 GCSE pupils. Students begin their GCSE journey in Year 9 where we give them a foundation knowledge to prepare them for Year 10 GCSE.  The course covers a range of theory topics which are worth 60%.  There are two components which are Physical Factors affecting Performance and Social Cultural Issues and Sports Psychology.  40% of the course is based on practical performance where students are assessed in three practical activities and one analysis of performance task.

In 2020 we were delighted to launch our A Level Programme for sixth Form students who study the OCR A Level course.

Teams & Extra Curricular

The department has a good reputation for developing successful and committed sports teams. All of our teams compete against other schools within the London Borough of Redbridge Leagues and Cups in addition to London and Essex Cup competitions. Our teams have previously enjoyed success in a variety of sports at District and County level. In addition, we play in annual friendly fixtures/tournaments against Bancrofts School in Cricket and Oakfield Parkonians Football Club.​

Extra-curricular provision within PE takes place before school, at lunch time and after school. Pupils are provided with the opportunity to supplement their curriculum time sporting activity in a vast number of clubs and teams that change according to seasonal sport. The following sports are catered for through clubs on a rotational basis, Inter House competition and/or Intra School Competition; Football, Futsal, Basketball, Athletics, Badminton, Table Tennis, Short Tennis, Dodgeball, Cricket, Swimming, Fitness, Handball and Rowing. 

Sports Tours

In recent years we have successfully run Football tours to Barcelona and Madrid.  These tours provide an excellent once in a lifetime opportunity to travel abroad with fellow team mates and compete against other clubs from varying nations and learn about and experience different sporting cultures. The pupils that we have taken on tour build excellent friendships both with team mates and those they play against, in addition to learning key life skills. These tours have proven a real success in developing personal qualities in individuals and cohesive teams that are then transferred to the school setting.​

Curriculum Overview


Course Guides

PE A Level


Departmental Links

Extra Curricular Timetable


PE Subject Links​

Teach PE


Clubs and activities links



Awaiting Content


Welcome to the Design and Technology department, the core of creativity where students excel by embedding a range of theoretical, technical principles, specialist knowledge and high levels of practical manufacturing skills and techniques.

We are proud of the consistently high expectations both our students and staff uphold in the teaching and learning of Design and Technology, students thrive with creative flair and learn to become autonomous problem solvers, producing high quality outcomes to real life problems.


Department Vision and Aims

The Design and Technology department is committed to delivering a bespoke curriculum that is inclusive and accessible to all, which provides the broadest possible opportunities for students.

  • To enable students to problem-solve for real clients, combining their theoretical knowledge with practical skills to create high quality outcomes.
  • To establish an environment that students feel safe to take risks and conduct learning in a manner that is engaging, exciting and embracing new technological and industrial advancements whilst retaining the best of traditional practice.
  • To promote student responsibilities within the lessons, mutually supporting peers across different year groups and recognising success and achievements.
  • To build confidence in students personal and professional mindset, encouraging students to work towards an industry standard and equipping them with necessary skills to deal with future challenges.
  • To amalgamate the Design and Technology Alumni, industry specialists and the local community in order to support our students with work experience, university choices and future career options.



The Design and Technology department is primarily based on the ground floor of the new build, with the exception of our Food room which is in the original building. We are fully equipped with the latest machines, tools and equipment. We have two multipurpose workshops, a large design studio, an ICT CAD-CAM suite and a large kitchen.


Design and Technology offers a broad and inclusive curriculum that has been meticulously designed for Years 7 to 13, students undergo a design process; analyse, research, design, plan, make, test and evaluate, ultimately manufacturing a final product solution that meets the needs of a real life problem, for a real life client. Coupled with theoretical principles, students can apply their technical knowledge and understanding to their design, make cross curricular links and wider contexts involving culture and society.  

In Year 7 and 8 Design and Technology is timetabled for 3 hours a fortnight. Students experience five main disciplines of the subject on a 10-week rotation, Product Design, Graphic Design / Electronics, Food Preparation and Nutrition and Textiles.

In Year 9 Design and Technology and Food Preparation and Nutrition is timetabled for 5 hours a fortnight for those who opt to continue studying into year 10 and 11, this is kept consistent until the end of Year 11. As a start to the creative GCSE option, students begin the theory course following the AQA GCSE specification, 8552 Design and Technology and 8585 Food Preparation and Nutrition. Theory is delivered through a designated hour lesson each week, with 2 hours dedicated to mini projects and an hour lesson for focussed practical tasks, primarily building on skills and techniques using a range of different tools, machines and equipment required for the course. This schedule is consistent for students progressing through Year 10, at the end of Year 10 the exam board releases the live contextual challenge for the cohort moving into Year 11.

In Year 11 Design and Technology and Food Preparation and Nutrition students complete the theory course and begin active revision sessions consolidating their knowledge and understanding within the designated lesson each week. Students will be tested on a range of different topics, end of unit assessments and will complete mock exam questions and papers. As part of their Non-Exam Assessment, students begin to work on their live contextual challenge as set by the exam board, as part of this students are required to produce an electronic portfolio along with a high quality final product solution (Design and Technology), or a range of two dishes (Food Preparation and Nutrition).

In Years 12 and 13, Design and Technology: Product Design is offered as a two-year A-level course and is timetabled for 9 hours a fortnight. Theory is consistently delivered through designated lessons, 2 hours every week throughout the duration of the course. In Year 12, students undertake 4 mini projects that run concurrently, 2 hours every week and a single Subject Knowledge Enhancement lesson primarily focussing on the practical understanding, accuracy and application. 
In Year 13 students begin their live Non-Exam Assessment worth 50%, choosing a contextual challenge of their own and writing a design brief related to a real-life problem, meeting the needs of a client. Students produce an electronic portfolio and a final product solution demonstrating a range of skills and techniques they have obtained during the course.

Our A-level students take their design portfolio to university interviews and share their experiences as part of their application process. We are proud that most of our students apply for a degree or apprenticeship course related to Design, Architecture, Engineering and Manufacturing

Information about the GCSE and A-level specification we offer can be found below.

AQA GCSE Design and Technology: 8552
Exam Paper: 2 hours – 50%
Non-Exam Assessment: Electronic portfolio with a final product solution – 50%

AQA GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition: 8585
Exam Paper: 1 hour 45 minutes – 50%
Non-Exam Assessment: Electronic portfolio with two practical outcomes (2 dishes) – 50%

AQA A-level Design and Technology: Product Design: 7552
Exam Paper 1: 2 hours and 30 minutes – 30%
Exam Paper 2: 1 hour and 30 minutes – 20%
Non-Exam Assessment: Electronic portfolio with a final product solution – 50%