Adventures in Ancient Africa

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Next stop on our ancient history adventures has taken us to Africa.

We’ve really enjoyed the stories about Anansi the Spider.  One story is included in the Story of the World Text.  In addition, we’ve read Gerald McDermott’s Caldcott Honor edition of the book, as well as two titles by Eric A. Kimmell:  Anansi Goes Fishing and Anansi and the Talking Melon.

We made our own Anansis out of a cardboard egg carton, paper towel tubes and black paint. You can find all of the instructions here.

We decided to do the project in the Activity Guide on geometric painting of hands, an African tradition that dates back to ancient times.   We used McDermott’s Anansi book to see examples of some  geometric designs, as well as a beautiful image on this website.

The kids quickly became excited about the idea and traced their hands. They began to draw geometric patterns (we used pencils instead of painting, as the AG suggested).  We then cut out the hands and glued them onto a page that went into their history notebooks.



The Queen Bee, age 5

Firefly, age 7