Students taking art for the Junior Cert cycle are taught to develop their observation and drawing skills using a variety of media. These drawings form the basis for ideas to develop into other areas. There is quite an emphasis on Crafts in the Junior Cycle so students are introduced to a wide variety of crafts such as Batik, Screen-printing and Lino-printing. They also are introduced to the Craft of Handbuilding in Clay, as well as Mixed Media 3D work. Students continue to develop and build on these skills through the course of their three years. In the 3 rd year, much of the year, from October to May is spent working on their Art Project, which forms the basis of their Art Exam. The Project theme is chosen from a selection issued by the Dept of Ed each year. Each project is very different and shows the students own interpretation and developing artistic style. The completed project is then submitted as their art exam along with a short drawing test done in May.
Leaving Certificate Art course combines the practical arts of drawing, painting, design and crafts with art history. Pupils have five classes each week, three practical and two Art History classes. The Art History course covers Irish and European art and architecture from Newgrange to contemporary art and it also includes Design Appreciation. In both 5th and 6th year, the Art classes take a trip to visit galleries and museums to further their knowledge and appreciation of art and these visits are hugely successful in enriching pupils’ experience of this subject. The practical art classes further develop the skills that pupils have been introduced in the junior cycle. Pupils explore a variety of media and develop their own personal, artistic style.