Article May 17, 2022

How we teach the arts online at King’s InterHigh

By King's InterHigh

At King’s InterHigh, we’re proud to say that more than 50% of our learners study at least one creative subject with us — but how does it all work?

If you’re new to online schooling, it can be hard to picture what might happen in a virtual arts class. However, our arts curriculum is filled with just as much interactivity, collaboration, and hands-on creation as you’d find at a top physical school.

From our learning methods to our arts events to our community of creative alumni, read on to learn all about how we teach the arts at King’s InterHigh.

We offer a wide variety of creative subjects

Our vast curriculum is the foundation of our online arts education. Committed to providing an education that revolves around each individual student, King’s InterHigh empowers students to personalise their learning by providing a wide range of creative subjects. The arts, of course, are no exception.

We have a range of creative subjects on offer for students of all ages, from Primary through to Sixth Form. Creative Media, for example, is a core subject for all learners from Year 3 to Year 9. Covering everything from video to painting, this broad and expansive course sees students produce a different art or media project each term.

Across the Key Stages, we also have a range of individual arts subjects to choose from:

  • Art and Design
  • Drama
  • Music
  • Photography
  • Film Studies

Plus, even if our students don’t want to study the arts, they can express and enjoy themselves through artistic extra-curricular activities. This year, some of our virtual clubs on offer include Theatre and Creative Writing.

We bring the classroom experience online

In the art classes you’re used to, you’ll often find a teacher demonstrating creative techniques at the front of the class while students follow along at their desks. It may surprise you, but art classes at King’s InterHigh work the same way — just in a digital environment.

In interactive online lessons, our qualified and passionate arts teachers lead students through a live video link. Students watch, listen, discuss, and engage as they learn all about making and evaluating art. Then, they apply that knowledge to their own creations.

While our classes are online, not all learning takes place virtually. We do teach digital art, but that’s just one field among many hands-on artistic disciplines. From their desks or easels at home, our students use the same art materials they would in a physical school. Painting on canvas, sculpting in clay, or snapping photos in the local area — whatever the project at hand, our students get stuck into creating away from their screens.

Finally, students get to share their work with the class via their webcams. Evaluation and improvement are big parts of developing as an artist, so our teachers are always on hand to provide individualised guidance, constructive feedback, and encouraging praise.

From interactivity to imagination, our online arts classes are a welcoming and engaging environment where students make great progress.

We bring students together

Of course, our students don’t just connect with their teachers — they also connect with each other. In Drama, for example, performing in pairs and groups is a crucial part of developing body language and dialogue skills. So, although our students don’t learn in the same physical space, that doesn’t stop them from working together in arts lessons.

Using their webcams and microphones, our students can practice facial expressions with each other, perform duologues, and much more. Teachers can lead whole-class warmup activities like freeze frames, then split students into virtual breakout rooms for partner work, small group skits, and more.

This collaborative learning environment extends beyond the classroom too. This year, our King’s InterHigh Theatre Club put on their first play, entirely online. After rehearsing Ernie’s Incredible Illucinations together virtually, they recorded their performances and edited them into a full production for students and parents to enjoy.

Whether our students are writing screenplays together or acting out scenes, they have plenty of opportunity to express their ideas, develop their communication skills, and build their confidence together.

We host regular virtual arts events

The Theatre Club’s online play was just one of the many virtual arts events we organise each year.

For example, we recently held our 2022 Assured Course Graduation ceremony. Certified by the world-respected City & Guilds, our Assured courses give GCSE-level students the opportunity to take qualifications in Art and Design, Photography, Drama, and Music no matter where they are in the world.

Our current Year 11 cohort got to show off the amazing portfolios of work they produced at their graduation event in May, with teachers awarding in-house accolades to some of the most stellar pieces of student artwork.

Later this year, we’ll also be hosting our Summer Arts Festival. Over the course of a week, we’ll be showcasing:

  • An art exhibition
  • A sculpture trail
  • A drama evening
  • A film evening
  • A music evening, where we’ll also reveal the winner of our House Song Competition

Arts events are an important way for us to celebrate everything our students have achieved. These immersive online experiences encourage our young artists, inspire other students, and bring our community together.

We showcase our students’ work

Alongside larger events, we regularly showcase artwork in other ways too. Just as students can see their work displayed on walls in a physical school, we display them on our blog, our YouTube channel, and our social media platforms.

As with our arts events, student showcases are a great way to congratulate our learners on their efforts. Seeing work on display gives our young artists a confidence boost, showing them that their expressions and ideas are important and valued.

Plus, there’s an added benefit to showcasing work online rather than in a physical building — it’s open to all. King’s InterHigh parents and families get to see an insight into the incredible work our community is capable of at any time, and students can share their work further afield. The next person to see one of our learner’s drawings, for example, may just be a gallery owner or an illustration agent in search of budding talent.

We support our students with flexibility

Last but not least, as an online school, King’s InterHigh is uniquely placed to support students with their creative passions outside of education. Our student community has long been home to young actors, musicians, artists, and content creators in need of flexible schooling, and we welcome more to join us each year.

Students can tune into our live classes from anywhere in the world as long as they have a computer or laptop with them. Plus, we record all lessons for later viewing, so learners have round-the-clock access to any classes they may have missed. This flexibility gives our young creativities the ability to fit their learning around rehearsals, shoots, recitals, and other important career activities. The best part is that there’s no compromise — students can follow their passions while receiving an outstanding quality of education.

From current pupils to alumni, our community of arts students includes:

Enjoy a creative education at King’s InterHigh

As our Head of Middle School, Fiona Henderson, explains, the arts can give a voice to students who have struggled with anxiety or low self-esteem in mainstream schooling. Our online arts teaching also prepares creative students for futures in industries such as film, music, design, and illustration. Alternatively, for some students, our classes and clubs are simply an opportunity to have fun and express yourself—just ask our alumnus Kieran Bjergstrom, a quantum physicist and entrepreneur with a passion for theatre.

Wherever your child’s creative interests lie, they’ll enjoy a stellar education as part of our imaginative and driven student community. Join us at our next open event or book a call with our admissions team to learn more about everything we have to offer.

By King's InterHigh

King’s InterHigh is an independent British international online school. Offering Primary, Secondary and Sixth Form education, we cater to students from age 7 – 18 who are looking for a high quality British education delivered in a way that revolves around their lifestyle.