Your challenge this term is to create your own African hut. This is due in on Wednesday 20th October 2021.
An African hut is called a rondavel. Traditionally, African tribes incorporated natural materials from their surroundings into the building of their huts or homes. Natural building materials may include mud and clay, grass or weeds, animal hides, animal dung, stone or sun-dried brick. The shapes, sizes and building materials of African huts differ between countries and peoples. Not all Africans live in a hut! A hut is a traditional village home.
To make a basic African hut, you will need craft materials that resemble the natural materials used in African hut building. You can create a 2d or 3d hut using any materials you have to hand – remember to think about using recycled objects.
- Be creative!
- What material can you use?
- How can you make it look natural?
An African hut:
The architecture of Africa is as diverse as the continent itself. African peoples use many building styles that reflect their unique cultures and the different environments in which they live. African architecture is a mix of traditional styles and styles introduced by Europeans. Religion has been a strong influence in African architecture as well.
Most of Africa’s rural peoples use natural materials that are locally available for their buildings. In grasslands, people typically use grasses to cover the walls and roofs of their homes. In forested areas, people build with hardwoods as well as with bamboo and raffia palm. Earth and clay are also major building resources. In areas with few natural resources, people often live as nomads, moving from place to place. Instead of building permanent homes, they typically use simple brush shelters or portable tents made of animal skins and woven hair.
Many of the materials used in African architecture are affected by rain, rot, or termites. As a result, buildings made from such materials, no matter how well constructed, last for only a limited time. Thus, many of the traditional buildings found today in Africa are not very old, even though they may be built in styles that date back many centuries.
In contrast, Africa still has some ancient structures made of stone, which lasts a long time. The oldest examples of stone architecture in Africa are the pyramids of Egypt, which were built more than 4,500 years ago. South of the Sahara, stone ruins of Great Zimbabwe remain in what is now the country of Zimbabwe.