Early Childhood


The Visual Arts programme at The Essington School Darwin is exciting and varied and incorporates a variety of learning approaches to cater for the differing needs of each student.

Children have a natural inclination to draw. Through the sustained contemplative practice of picture making the students at The Essington School Darwin are successfully learning to value their own indiosyncratic response to the world. They are developing skills and techniques with which to communicate effectively, and appreciate aesthetic values and differences in multi-cultural Darwin.

The Visual Arts programme, in conjunction with other curriculum areas:

  • assists the growth of self-esteem and self expression
  • assists with cognitive development
  • develops an understanding and appreciation of the visual arts
  • provides opportunities for creativity
  • provides for enjoyment and relaxation
  • enhances other curriculum areas

Our major goal in the Visual Arts is the development of the individual student’s skill, sensitivity and imagination in Art.

Classroom Visual Art with a specialist teacher is part of the primary and secondary curriculum. Outside visiting Visual Arts specialist are engaged from time to time. Each year level from Transition to Year 7 complete Art classes. Students from Years 8 to 10 are able to complete Art classes as part of their Electives program. Students have an opportunity to work in a number of areas including: painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, textiles, collage, design and art appreciation. The art concepts of line, colour, shape, pattern, texture and tone may also be exposed.

Themes of study are drawn from different areas of interest to students including themselves, their class teacher or their specialist art teacher. Themes include myself, my family, the school environment, the Northern Territory environment, the man-made and natural world, historical, environmental or art-based. Where appropriate, the current topic of research in the classroom will be picked up and explored in the art classroom to establish a more integrated approach to learning. There are opportunities to work individually, in pairs and in groups. The process of making art is valued as well as the finished product.


In 2006 the School established a separate, specialist Visual Arts Centre. This Centre, with its specially

designed classroom, has a raised roof that allows a great deal of natural light into the room. On the front of the building is a large paved area for outside art work and projects. It is planned to add other facilities to the adjacent area to progressively extend the building and programs offered. The Centre allows for the display of student art. Notice boards around the School are also used to show student work and these are regularly updated. The gardens outside the Visual Arts Centre are used to display student sculpture from time to time.

Middle School students have the opportunity to complete programs off the school site in specialist craft facilities and also at nearby schools. They also regularly visit galleries or places of special interest. This is intended to expose students to a variety of artists’ work, both past and present, traditional and non-traditional and indigenous. Visiting artists are encouraged to come to the School to talk with students about their work. This including professional artists who illustrate children’s books.

Students’ creative ability is stimulated and nurtured by the creative arts that expose them to a wide range of media including drawing, painting, printmaking, and sculpture.