Visual Arts at Hutt Valley High School is divided into Junior and Senior Art.
Courses at Junior Level will expose students to a range of media, techniques and tools to ensure that they have a broad range of practical knowledge. They will also discuss and investigate artists and art movements in order to assist them to understand the Visual Arts in context. Students will participate in peer, group and self-assessment activities to foster the cycle of action and reflection - the integral process of making art. The emphasis at junior levels in on acknowledging and drawing upon students prior knowledge and experience, establishing a broad base of practical skills/understandings, building identifying individuals’ strengths.
Students learn to develop visual literacy and aesthetic awareness as they manipulate and transform visual, tactile, and spatial ideas to solve problems. They explore experiences, stories, abstract concepts, social issues, and needs, both individually and collaboratively. They experiment with materials, using processes and conventions to develop their visual enquiries and create art works. They view art works, bringing their own experiences, sharing their responses, and generating multiple interpretations. Their meaning making is further informed by investigation of the contexts in which art works are created, used, and valued. As they develop their visual literacy, students are able to engage with a wider range of art experiences in increasingly complex and conscious ways. Students will be explore a range of traditional and contemporary art making approaches including Maori, European, Pasifika and other cultures that add significant dimensions to New Zealand visual culture.
At Senior Levels the curriculum divides into four key areas: Design, Painting, Photography and Art HIstory. As the courses specialise, individualised programs are offered, allowing students in consultation with their teacher to select their own subject matter and established practice for study. The courses require students to study relevant artists and analyse their work, associated conventions and appropriate processes and procedures. Senior Art students will learn how to convey a message, express a point of view, and transform perceptions. The courses encourage innovation and enquiry as students learn how to understand your audience, approach challenges with a new perspective, and develop innovative responses that improve, transform, or challenge our experience of the world. At Senior levels the focus of the courses is to prepare students for NCEA assessments and examinations and future study.