Kente Cloth

Kente Cloth lesson plan

Instead of weaving over and under, draw it with Crayola® Color Switchers™ Markers! Bold and colorful textile patterns from Ghana look almost real with this amazing marker technology.

  • 1.

    Kente cloth, traditionally made by the people of Ghana, is very beautiful and meaningful. It is made by weaving long strips that contain symbolic patterns. There is a pattern to illustrate joy, a pattern for royalty, a pattern for newborn babies—nearly every important event in a person’s life can be expressed in Kente cloth patterns. When several strips of fabric are woven, they are cut into even lengths, and then stitched together to create wide sheets of cloth. The fabric is used to create flowing garments.

  • 2.

    To create your own replica Kente cloth drawings, begin by using Crayola Scissors to cut several long, narrow strips of paper.

  • 3.

    Use Crayola Color Switchers Markers to color each strip a different color. Flip the Marker and apply the special color switcher to add repeated patterns to your strips. Vary the colors and patterns you use on each strip. You could duplicate authentic patterns or create your own symbols.

  • 4.

    Cut the long strips into several shorter sections. Tape them together on the back. Use a Color Switchers Marker to create "stitches" that visually connect the strips to each other on the front of your drawing.


  • Children study the colors, patterns, and meanings of the symbols used in Kente cloth, a traditional form of weaving from Ghana.
  • Children create a replica drawing of Kente cloth.


  • Design your own symbols for important times in your life. Create Kente cloth strips that show these symbols. Explain the meaning of your Kente cloth in prose or poetry.
  • Identify other cultures in which weaving is central to the heritage of the people. What raw materials are used for the fabric? What dyes are used? What similarities can you identify in traditional designs?
  • Write a story about authentic symbols shown on your Kente cloth. What do the symbols mean? When would the garment be worn? By whom? Imagine a day in the life of that person.