Henri Rousseau Elementary Art Lesson Pre-K to 6th Grade


Josey’s Art School


Studying Art with the Masters


Robin Norgren, M.A.

This Lesson:

Henri Rousseau

Snake Line Cartooning Lesson


-Henri Rousseau



·      Henri Rousseau is famous for his jungle paintings.

·      Henri Rousseau never saw a jungle because he never left France!

·      These paintings were all created from his imagination.


Source: https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/henri-rousseau-jungles-paris


 Materials needed

Pencil (to write the child’s name on the back of the work)

Black pen

8.5x11 or 9x12 white cardstock/precut poster board/watercolor paper– something with a bit more stability to it than copy paper in order to withstand the amount of paint your students will be using.  You will need enough for each participant to use as the base for his/her artwork

This is a lesson that can be adapted in many ways depending on the age and skill level of your classroom. 

Options:  Fill in the drawing with color using ANY of these options: crayons, markers, watercolor paint, colored pencils, acrylic paint (in my example I am using watercolor paint)

Ruler (optional)

Baby wipes


Length of Time/Duration of project:

30 minutes

Prep work:

Gather the materials.  For younger students, you may choose to divide the page into 2 quadrants using a dotted line.  This should take no more than about 20 minutes


1.   Take your piece of paper that you are using as the base for the project and write the child’s name on the back of the paper or let them write their names on their own.



2.   Divide the page into 2 equal quadrants – you can prep the page beforehand OR your older students can divide the page using a ruler.