Art Classes: Level III

Level III-Art Lesson 3: The Chinese Horse's Head

Learn to draw the head of a horse that tells us something about Chinese history

The lesson is suitable for students in grade 5 through adult.


Art Lesson Description:

In 221 BC the Emperor Qin Shi Huang built the first centralized empire in Chinese history.  However, what he is most remembered for is constructing the forerunner of the Great Wall of China, and for the enormous army of terra cotta warriors and horses that were buried with him.  The horse used in this lesson is a copy of one of those buried horses that decorates the front of a P.F. Chang restaurant.  The stylized form of the horse simplifies the task of drawing the horse’s complex form.

The lesson uses a colored background to make an elegant, regal-looking horse.  Using simple drawing tools like the charcoal white pencil and the gold paint pen enhance the effect.

This lesson includes both POWERPOINT and VIDEO versions of the lesson plus 2 downloadable printouts: a warmup and a drawing of the horse's head.


List of Supplies for Each Student:


Suggestions for Cross-Curricular Connections:

Social Studies: Learn an elementary version of the history of the Qin Dynasty by clicking here. For more in-depth details, see:


Terra Cotta Army:

  • Learn about Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi and how his terra cotta army was created.
  • Learn details about the terra cotta army.
  • Learn 5 facts about the army and the emperor.
  • Find a good picture of the terra cotta army.
  • Watch a brief video telling about the terra cotta army and how it was discovered.
  • Another video about the army, how it was created, and what we can learn from the army.
  • Watch Smithsonian video about the army and its discovery.

Writing: Find out about the history of the Great Wall of China or the terra cotta army and write about what you learn.

Art and Music:

  • Color has symbolic meaning in China. What to advertisers need to know about color in order to advertise in China?
  • Listen to music from the Qing Dynasty.
  • Watch a dance from the Qing Dynasty. What does it tell you about the people of that time?


Travel Information: If you travel to China, you cannot use Gmail or Facebook in China without a VPN.


Approximate Time to Complete the Art Class:

  • Introduction through guided drawing: 25 minutes
  • Finishing the drawing: 25 minutes
  • Total time: 50 minutes



Original Image
Original Image
How to Draw
How to Draw
A Finished Art Lesson
A Finished Art Lesson

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Bundle III-A (Online Art Lessons for Kids | ArtAchieve)
ENTIRE Level III (Online Art Lessons for Kids | ArtAchieve)

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