Hi, and welcome to the second to last stop on our yearlong journey learning about Children Around the World with Winter Promise curriculum. This week we are talking about West Africa, including the countries of Niger, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, and Cape Verde. Obviously, there was no way we could do justice to all those countries in a week, so we were just looking at some of the highlights and unique commonalities of this region.
I actually had the pleasure of spending a couple weeks in Mali just after graduating from high school, and one of my most vivid memories is sitting in a circle on the ground and eating peanut gravy over rice with our fingers from a common bowl. It was fun to tell the kids my own experiences as we tried to recreate them in our living room, right down to burning our fingers on the hot rice and gravy. 🙂
Bignificent made some beautiful notebooking pages from templates we downloaded from NotebookingPages.com. (That’s an affiliate link as are the Amazon ones below.) She chose to delve more deeply into the Yoruba culture of Nigeria and Benin and was particularly fascinated with their intricate beadwork.
Books about West Africa
As usual, we found a number of great children’s books to enhance our learning about this part of the world. We learned about Samuel Morris, whose life story is almost unbelievable. We talked again about child slavery in the chocolate industry. And we read some more light-hearted stories, celebrating the unique beauty of this part of the world and the cultures that call it home.
- One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia by Miranda Paul
- Adventures in Burkina by Betty English Arnold
- Samuel Morris: The African Boy God Sent to Prepare an American University for Its Mission to the World by Lindley Baldwin
- Yatandou by Gloria Whelan
- Mansa Musa, You Reign!: The King Who Put Mali Empire (Africa) on the Map by Marques Gaither
- Martha Ann’s Quilt for Queen Victoria by Kyra E. Hicks
- Quest for the Lost Prince by Dave and Neta Jackson
- To Liberia: Destiny’s Timing by Victoria Sherman Lang
- African Adventures with the Almighty’s Signature: My Inspiring Stories by Amy Hagerup
- Samuel Morris: A Spirit Filled Life by Stephen Merritt
- Captive to Cocoa by Kate Taylor and Jeffrey Underwood
That about wraps up our time in West Africa. What a fascinating and beautiful part of our world! Our last stop next week will be Southern Africa. I can’t believe our journey is nearing an end. I hope you’ll join us next week.
To see our other stops and adventures on our journey this year, please check out our Children Around the World landing page and have some fun hopping around!