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Primary Drawing 

By the age of seven most young children have very strong opinions about their art ability. They will define themselves as belonging to one of three ability groups; good, ok or useless. This definition is very powerful and long lasting and is formulated by observation of peers and classroom, playground conversation. Quite paradoxically, most children still enjoy art immensely despite their anxieties. In a child's mind drawing IS art, they believe wrongly that if you can't draw you aren't good at art. And their definition of drawing is limited too. They usually aren't taught that there are a range of drawing styles; graphic, abstract, contemporary, sculptural, realistic, technical, architectural, digital, the list goes on. Nor do they receive comprehensive drawing tuition in these styles to find which one suits them and how to improve. Opportunities to draw are often restricted too and so my advice is simple:: provide time for pupils to draw for creative self-expression, teach them about different drawing styles and if you don't have the ability to teach drawing skills yourself then my drawing tutorials should help.

Contemporary drawing

Contemporary Drawing

The Ebook features 12 modern drawing activities that stimulate creative and unique approaches to drawing and do not require realistic drawing skills.


Contemporary Drawing 

Drawing does not have to be for the gifted few who are naturally talented at realism. There are many different styles of drawing; graphic, pattern based, sculptural, architectural, abstract, digital, you can even draw with clay or wire. However, art projects are often so constrained in design that the only way a pupil can be successful is to followthe teachers narrow ideals. 

By planning more open projects that have diverse approaches you will encourage pupils to work in ways that suit their learning style. This is really evident when you look at contemporary art because this shows you clearly that you can make brilliant art without having traditional realist drawing skills. Try my contemporary drawing exercises to get you started.


Abstract drawing

Abstract Drawing

This lesson challenges students to invent a secret language then draw in an abstract way to communicate words and phrases in their own unique style. 

Free Drawing Lessons 

Here are some free drawing lessons for you to download.

Drawing from memory should help to build basic memory retention which in turn develops learning ability. Object in a bag and Doodle Bugs are aimed at developing imagination whilst Mark Making focusses on expressing emotions and creative intelligence.

Drawing lesson plans ideas

Memory Drawing

This staple drawing exercise was used by Henry Moore during the war to draw in the air raid shelters. It is an essential!

Free to Download

Drawing with letters lesson plan

Drawing Letters

The relationship between writing and drawing is powerful and often children who are struggling to draw a shape will find confidence

Free to Download

Drawing lesson plans ideas

Doodle Bugs

This is a lovely starter exercise enjoyed by pupils of all ages (even adults!)

Free to Download

Drawing lesson plans ideas

Mark Making

I love this lesson. It's so simple, fun and expressive. Students love it too. I've seen it done Early Years through to GCSE

Blind hand drawing lesson

Blind Hand Drawing

All ages

Another lovely starter activity that focusses students' attention on something very familiar to them.

Free to download

back to back drawing lesson

Describing Drawing 

All ages

This exercise can be a great literacy activity and is excellent fun too! I use this a lot in class.

Free to download

rubber drawing

Rubber Drawing

All ages

Alovely drawing activity that deals in drawing in reverse. You take away marks instead of adding them. Great fun for all.

Free to download

Blind contour drawing lesson

Blind Contour Drawing

All ages

Making 'blinds' to go over the drawing hand is a great way of teaching young artists to study hard.​

Free to download


Many schools spend a fortune buying expensive sketchbooks but with budgets being so tight it's worth making your own. You don't need expensive materials, it's dead easy. Simply fold a piece of packaging card in half and fill it with a few folded envelopes, junk mail, scrap paper, magazines and anything else you have lying around. Then put an elastic band around the middle. That's it! 

Look at these fantastic examples from Gomersal Primary School and check out their brilliant blog for more art ideas. Better still, why not create your own blog and link to theirs? Sharing good practice is awesome!

Mark Crilley's superb Youtube channel is a great place for young people to develop their drawing skills by drawing things they love.

Consultancy Service

As an NSEAD registered art consultant, I offer a friendly, professional art consultancy service to schools, from early years right through to Secondary GCSE. I've worked with infant schools to improve art assessment, delivered primary school CPD on skills and progression, worked with Subject Leaders to raise attainment and done whole school, secondary art department audits including formal lesson observations and department reviews. My over-arching strategy is to support the professional development of hard working professionals with positive and constructive advice for improvement.

Email Me


Training Courses

Please follow the link to see my latest CPD teacher training courses. If you can't see any that suits your needs, why don't you arrange for a bespoke in-school service?

Art consultancy art INSET CPD
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