Teaching Ideas

Encouraging Dialogue

For Students K-12

  • This sculpture teaches members of the Bwami society in the Lega culture to be wise, fair, and open-minded. What do you see in this sculpture that could represent these ideas? The Bwami see models for behavior in artworks they create and they also follow specific rules for behavior as they are initiated into different levels of the Bwami society. How do you learn about proper behavior? What examples of behavior and important personal qualities do you look to and follow in your daily life?

Making Connections

For Students K-12

  • This sculpture, Four-faced half figure_, _is related to a specific proverb: "Sakimatwematwe has seen an elephant on the other side of the large river." Proverbs are sayings, which may often teach us a lesson and are full of wisdom. We may sometimes hear our friends or family members say the following:
    A stitch in time saves nine
    Don’t judge a book by its cover
    All that glitters is not gold
    The early bird gets the worm
    Discuss these and other proverbs with the class. What are the lessons to learn and the wisdom imparted through these proverbs? Choose one that you like and translate that proverb into a drawing. Exchange your drawing with another classmate and see if they can guess the proverb that you illustrated. Share thoughts about how you chose to illustrate the proverb.
  • Lega artworks often represent valuable principles or beliefs. Several beliefs connected to this sculpture could be wisdom, fairness, and good judgment. Choose one of these principles or beliefs and create an original work that embodies the belief. For instance, what would a sculpture that represented fairness look like? After creating your works, share them with the rest of the class and discuss how the beliefs may have been interpreted and represented differently in each class member’s creation.