Arts, music, dance, and literature of Nigeria
Arts, music, dance, and literature of Nigeria

Arts, music, dance, and literature of Nigeria

I can describe the art, music, dance, and literature of Nigeria.

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In this lesson, students will explore Nigerian culture by looking at photographs pertaining to the different Nigerian art forms, analyzing song lyrics and Nigerian dances, and reading Nigerian folklore.

Learning objective

Students will be able to describe the art, music, dance, and literature of Nigeria.


Students will analyze a photograph of Nigerian women dressed in traditional clothing, face paint, and headdress. They will be asked to make an inference about what they see in the photograph. Students will learn Nigeria is made up of many different ethnic groups and cultures. Students will look at a map and learn about where Nigeria is located in the world


The lesson will go over Nigerian culture. It will explain the types of art including masks, face painting, crowns, and sculptures which serve a social or religious purpose and are often created for ceremonies. After learning about the different art forms, students will learn about traditional Nigerian musical instruments such as the dun dun and the bata. They will listen to the sounds of Nigerian percussion and learn about how the use of instruments varies depending on the tribe and location in Nigeria. Students will sing along to a Yoruba children’s song and analyze the song lyrics. Students will learn about the importance of dance to Nigerian culture and watch the Ekombi Dance. Students will read “Why the Bat Flies at Night,” a Nigerian myth, and analyze what the Nigerian’s believe about bats flying at night.


Students will respond to 10 questions including 6 true/false, 3 multiple choice, and 1 open-ended question.


Students will list three things they learned about Nigerian culture (art, music, dance literature) and discuss how Nigerian culture is similar to and/or different from their culture. Students will be asked to share why they think it is important to learn about different cultures of the world. Lastly, they will use what they learned about Nigerian artwork to create their own masks (template provided).

Teaching tips

Allow students to take notes about Nigerian culture throughout the lesson.

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