African Mask Game
Need a February bulletin board that shows student exploration into African art and culture? Imagine these beautiful African mask projects hanging in the hallway by your door for Black History Month. You will be the talk of the school! This cultural art lesson is perfect for social studies and art teachers wanting to teach about tribal rituals, ceremonies, and traditions as well as the art of mask-making and the reasoning behind the making and wearing of them. In addition, this game is great for teaching about the art of Africa, line, and pattern. Step-by-step picture directions and the included PowerPoint presentation with close-up, detailed photos will guide your students from start to finish.
Going to be absent and need a last minute art history lesson for the substitute? Or are you searching for fun, supplemental resources for art? Fill up your art sub plan folder with low-prep, creative art projects. Once your students know how to play the game, they’re easy to leave with a sub! Create a small sub tub in your room with copies of the game in a labeled folder inside the tub along with some dice. The lesson is structured in a way that students can do the reading and practice drawing in one lesson, and the actual project when you return the following week.
Are you trying to foster more independence in your art room? This art game makes for the best and most productive early finisher activity for your students. You can set up a choice-based art center where students select an activity amongst different ones. Print out the game board and directions back to back, file them in labeled folders, and let them pick what they’d like to create.
Looking for a differentiated art lesson that boosts independent thinking, problem-solving, and skill-acquisition? This art lesson will do the trick. Despite students selecting designs from the same game board, the outcome of each project is unique to the creator.
You will create an African mask by rolling the die and collecting the different parts needed to create it.
- First roll the die to pick a head shape from the first column. Using the template and a permanent marker, trace it in the middle of your paper.
- Then, roll four more times to pick which eyes and eyebrows, nose, mouth, and head decorations you’ll draw.
- Next, use the “Exploring African Mask Design” handout on page four to add patterns to your work.
- Then using either liquid or traditional watercolor paints (in trays), carefully paint your design. Consider making some areas of the design a solid color and others two-toned. To do this, paint half of a shape one color, clean your brush, and paint the remaining half a different color. Let the two colors touch in the middle while they’re wet. We call this a “gradation” (two or more colors that gradually fade into one a- nother).
- When it’s dry, cut it out.
And that’s how you play this African mask for kids game!
I’ve included three ways students can generate their design. The first is the game board where students roll the die to select their parts. The second is a “you pick” board. Both of these are printables. And lastly, for teachers needing engaging lessons during distance learning, I’ve added digital spinner wheels!
First, print out the african mask game and picture directions back-to-back. Then give your students dice and watch them have fun creating their own art project independently. If you have access to a smartboard or projector, use the accompanying PowerPoint presentation. It will guide the students during each part of the art project.
Once completed, have students use the self-assessment rubrics to evaluate their artwork based on craftsmanship, creativity, following directions, work habits, project goals, and clean up. And then have them complete the “Big Ideas” sheet so they can connect the creation process to their learning.
If you are substituting or need a fast finisher activity, use the included coloring page.
- 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th Grades
Main Learning Objective
- Students will be able to understand the tradition associated with mask-making and design an African mask using traditional patterns found in African art.
- Heavy White Drawing Paper
- Permanent Marker
- Liquid or Traditional Watercolor Paints in Trays
You Will Receive
- 15-page, Non-editable PDF (African Mask Game)
- 9-page Non-Editable PowerPoint Presentation
- Dice Game
- 6 Mask Templates
- Step-by-Step Picture Tutorial and Directions
- Choice-Based Drawing Version of the Game
- African Mask-Making Information Handout
- Visual Arts Self-Assessment Rubrics
- Artist “Big Ideas” Reflection Sheets
- 8, “I CAN” Statements Aligned to the Studio Habits of Mind
- Practice Drawing Page
- Coloring Page
- Paperless Google Drive digital resource for students (also for use in Google Classroom, Schoology, Canvas, Seesaw, Microsoft OneDrive, Teams, and anywhere else you can share a link to a file…link on the bottom of page 2)
- Digital Spinner Wheels in the download as well as on Google Slides and YouTube (links on the bottom of page 3)
I left this activity for a sub. students loved it and their work was beautiful. – Ann C.
I’m extremely pleased with this package. I was looking for handouts that had examples of African masks. This made it tons of fun for my students by allowing them to pick the shape of the head, nose, eyes, head dress, etc. It has been a huge hit and the projects look amazing. It was worth it to make my planning and prep work easier. Thanks. – Laura A.
My students love these resources! We used this resource as part of our Black History month unit. Easy to use and student friendly. – Melissa T.