Grades/Level: Adult Learners
Subjects: Visual Arts, English–Language Arts, ESL
Time Required: Single Class Lesson
45–60 minutes
Author: Getty Museum Education Staff

For the Classroom

Curriculum Home
Lesson Plans
Tips for Teaching about Portraits
Tips for Teaching about Landscapes
Tips for Teaching about Narrative Art

Lesson Overview

Students will practice their speaking skills while describing a landscape scene for a partner to draw.

Learning Objectives

• Students use landscape vocabulary to describe images.
• Students translate their peers' verbal descriptions of an image into visual form.


• Choose from the landscapes below
• Looking at Landscapes Vocabulary

Lesson Steps

• Divide students into pairs.

• Make sure everyone has a blank piece of paper and a pencil.

• Explain to students that one person in the pair will draw, and the other will describe.

• Distribute printouts of one of the images to the "describers," making sure that the "drawers" don't see the image.

• Explain that the describer should try to describe everything in the image to the drawer, using the new vocabulary words. As the describer describes, the drawer will begin to sketch the scene exactly according to the description.

• The drawer is not allowed to look at the image! The describer is not allowed to point to the drawer's paper. If any instructions are provided, they must be given verbally.

• Give students enough time to complete their descriptions and drawings. When finished, they can compare their drawings to the image.

• If you have time, you may distribute a second image and have pairs reverse their roles.

• Have students share their drawings and their impressions of the activity. Ask them if this exercise was difficult or easy. Why?

Wheatstacks / Monet
Wheatstacks, Snow Effect, Morning, Claude Monet, 1891