Unit of Work: Into the Jungle
(based on the works of Henri Rousseau)
Henri Rousseau was a French post-impressionist painter. Rousseau’s work allows students to learnabout how artists use their imagination to create their artworks. The worksenable students to be creative and shift from their everyday context to an imagined situation, that is, what it is like to be in the jungle (Board ofStudies, 2000). Rousseau’s works are a solid platform for lessons in theCreative Arts areas of Dance, Music, Drama and Art. It provides Stage Two students with an engaging opportunity to capture moods and feelings of different environments and living creatures.
(click on a lesson number for a more detailed lesson plan)
Brief Outline of Learning Experiences
Students will look at some of Henri Rousseau’s jungle artworks and be introduced to an Art Map Compass to explore and appreciate his work. They will also access a website that allows them to create an artwork like Henri Rousseau’s.
The lesson aims to continue on from the introduction to the unit by making an artwork based on the jungle. This will assist them to learn to use their imagination and experiment with different forms and elements of visual arts. They will create a jungle scene by first drawing with crayon to create plants and animals, putting a wash over the background and then in a follow-up lesson they will use fibres to put plants in the foreground.
This lesson provides learning experiences that link to the song ‘Jungle Safari’ by Tim Smith. Students are given the opportunity to listen to a piece of music and examine musical concepts in listening. They will also be given the opportunity to perform, come up with movements and organise sound.
In this lesson, students will create and perform a jungle soundscape using percussive and non-percussive instruments. Students will learn about tempo, pitch and tone colour.
This lesson uses drama to further explore the environment and creatures of the jungle. Students will learn to shift from the everyday context into the imagined situation e.g. becoming jungle creatures and taking on the role of explorers that are lost in the jungle. They will learn to take on a role and work cooperatively in small groups whilst also learning to appreciate the contributions of others.
This lesson provides students with a series of learning opportunities in which the class makes a dance based on life in the jungle. Students will develop their ideas of the natural world through the use of the theme, in the jungle, as a basis for dance ideas. They will learn to respond, improvise and reflect on the different moods and creatures of the jungle by making movements and responding to music.