Washington State Visual Art Standards

Monday, May 30, 2016

Djembe Drum paintings by 1st Grade


I LOVE this one...those colors!
My 1st grade artists have been focusing on musical instruments for their painting unit lessons. We had just made beautiful Mexican style guitars so I decided we would make some West African drums next. This lesson incorporated guided drawing, painting, sgrafitto, and printing processes.

I began by introducing the artists to a short drumming lesson shown in this video.



This video taught some Djembe drum history, how the drum is made, and how it is played...super fun! I had the kids practice the drumming techniques on their tables...it was loud...but they loved it!

We did a little guided drawing and they had to choose a primary and secondary color to paint their drum head and body.  After that, they could draw into the paint with the other end of their brush to create the rope part. They could add patterns to their drums as well with the sgraffito technique.



To finalize our painting process, I asked the kids to paint their hand...yep...you read that right. They could paint their hand any color/s they wanted to print onto their drum heads. If they wanted to add more than one print, they could make that artistic choice.


Needless to say, this was a HUGE hit. The happy sounds of giggles in my room were infectious. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

One the 2nd day, I gave the drums back so they could add more details with oil pastels and fill in their backgrounds. We shared our final works with one another and celebrated a job well done.









I loved this lesson and their work turned out beautifully. I mean look at that color! 

Thanks for stopping by!