Creative and Performing Arts

Prep School

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Creative and Performing Arts

Art & Design Technology at Oakwood

Oakwood pupils enjoy an exciting and varied programme of art and design technology in a beautiful, well equipped art room. Children are encouraged to learn and explore through a variety of creative activities including; drawing, painting, ceramics, silk painting, sewing, felt making, 3D design, animation, sculpture and printmaking.

Visits from local artists and sculptors enhance and extend the children's work.

The annual Oakwood Art Exhibition is a chance for every child from nursery upwards to select a piece of their work to be exhibited. 

From Year 2 the children come to the art room for more formal lessons.  A balanced curriculum is taught through projects lasting between two to six weeks.  Areas covered presently are: drawing, painting, sewing, collage, printmaking, 3D construction, felt making, silk painting, willow structure design, ceramics, colour mixing, art history and food technology.  High priority is given to the teaching of drawing as this skill is important in all areas of art and design as well as being a useful and desirable life skill.


Music lessons form a part of our Prep School timetable, with all classes having 70 minutes of music tuition per week.  Pupils learn about different periods and styles of music as well as music theory.  In addition, they have the opportunity to learn about and try various musical instruments.  Basic composition skills are developed in line with learning to read music.  

Oakwood has four thriving choirs (Pre-Prep, Junior, Senior and Boys Choirs) and several smaller singing groups who perform regularly at school as well as in festivals and competitions. 

The children at Oakwood are encouraged to perform, to help build their confidence, and we provide regular opportunities to hear the children play or sing.  Our whole school Friday Assemblies provide an excellent opportunity for pupils to showcase their progress in music at whatever level they are.

A large proportion of the children play a musical instrument; both group and private lessons can be arranged. Peripatetic teachers provide specialist tuition across a wide range of instruments.  Children are welcome to play for pleasure or work towards ABRSM examinations.



During the Academic Year, all Prep School pupils enjoy class based Drama lessons.  We believe these skills are integral in supporting our pupils' self-esteem, confidence and ability to speak publicly.  Children prepare for Friday Assembly presentations (two per class per year) and practise performance skills.  Parents are always welcome to join us for Friday Assembly and the pupils' dramatic interpretations of what they have been learning never fails to entertain.

Our Head of Drama offers additional Speech and Drama lessons throughout the school week, most often in pairs.  The children perform at the Chichester Festival and many select to work towards LAMDA examinations. 

Children are offered regular opportunities for performance including a Christmas Pantomime play, outdoor Summer Term performances of Shakespeare and other poetry and prose and our Year 6 musical which forms an important part of our Year 6 programme. 


Food Technology

As part of our Creative Carousel (Design Technology, Drama and Food Technology), Prep School pupils love the opportunity to explore the basics of food preparation and nutrition.  In our purpose built Food Technology Room, children learn to be independent and safe in the kitchen.  They prepare a variety of dishes, from simple starts to learn knife skills such as salad to family meals including curry, soups or pasta bakes to specialist areas including bread and pasta making.  

The Great Oakwood Bake Off is an annual competition showcasing the culinary talents of our pupils.  Past Bake Off challenges have included:  a set of cupcakes, a full sized Easter celebration cake, quiche and homemade bread.  Finalists must re-create their dishes independently at school.  Our staff are always happy and available to judge this competition!