Level III-Art Lesson 4: The Face From The Gambia
Learn to draw a realistic human face and learn the basic principles of pencil shading
The lesson is suitable for students in grade 5 through adult.
Art Lesson Description:
Drawing people and faces can look difficult, but you will be surprised at how easy it is when you draw this bas-relief design from The Gambia.
This is one of the first lessons where we will begin the drawing with a pencil. Up until this point we have drawn with magic markers to teach students to make bold lines and to avoid the constant erasing that is the habit of beginning artists. In this lesson students can continue to draw with the same confident lines. Erasing is not necessary, since lines can be adjusted during the shading process.
This lesson includes both POWERPOINT and VIDEO versions of the lesson plus 2 downloadable printouts: a warmup and a drawing of the face.
List of Supplies for Each Student:
- 1 African bas-relief face warm-up (this is included with the lesson)
- 11" x 14" drawing paper (#ad)
- 1 half-sheet of drawing paper
- Kneaded eraser (#ad)
- Blending stick (#ad)
- 1 fine tipped permanent black marker (#ad)
- 2H, HB, and 4B drawing pencils (#ad)
- Graphite bar (#ad)
Suggestions for Cross-Curricular Connections:
- Learn facts about The Gambia.
- Watch a video that shows scenery, describes current problems, and tells the history of the country.
- A brief history of The Gambia from 1455 to the present.
- Learn about Kunta Kinteh Island and its role in slavery.
- Learn what the Stone Circles of Senegambia and other monuments tell us about the history of The Gambia.
- Museums in The Gambia tell us a lot about the country's history.
- Learn the names of popular dishes in The Gambia, and learn how to cook them yourself.
- Peanuts are the main export of The Gambia. Learn the history of peanuts in this country, and how peanuts changed The Gambia's history.
- Learn about malaria and its symptoms.
- Learn the life cycle of the malaria parasite.
- Learn about some efforts to fight malaria and HIV in The Gambia.
- Learn about the minerals found in The Gambia.
Writing: Write about what you have learned about the food of The Gambia, the history of The Gambia, or what you know about malaria.
- Read Bintou’s Braids (#ad) by Sylvianne Diouf--for elementary children.
- Read some proverbs from The Gambia and explain what they mean. Find more proverbs here.
- Read longer folktales from The Gambia online.
- Read Alex Haley's Roots, (#ad) the story of the slave Kunta Kinte, set in The Gambia.
- Read The Chameleon and the Hare, (#ad) a West African folktale.
- Read Kumba Am and Kumba Amul, (#ad) another West African folktale.
Dance: Watch dancers from The Gambia. Watch someone learning a Gambian dance.
Music: Listen to the music of an American who studied in The Gambia to learned how to play the kora, a 21 string harp from West Africa, by clicking here.
Approximate Time to Complete the Art Class:
- Introduction through guided drawing: 20 minutes
- Finishing the drawing: 50 minutes
- Total time: 70 minutes