We. Went. To. Africa!!!
Can I let you in on a little secret?
My three kids and I have all gone to Africa this year. And not just once. We’ve gone again and again and again!
I know you may be giving me the side-eye right now, but let me explain.
Our daily homeschool life is filled with tons of reading, hands on projects and plenty of field trips to cool places in the tri-state area. We’ve also focused on learning about and enjoying our place within the story of Africa. Oh the beautiful sights, such wonderful cultures and diverse people are found in the land of our ancestors! We have fallen head over heels in love with our Motherland. That is why we couldn’t only go just once. And every time it was from the comfort of our own home!
With this series, I want to share some of our “travel” experiences and give you a first-class ticket of your own!
You’re in for an unforgettable time, get ready to take flight!
Part 1: Ethiopia, Djibouti and Somalia
Day #1 – Ethiopia
What’s a trip without some travel music? You won’t need ear buds for this one. Feel free to blast this song to the max!
Africa Is Not a Country by Mary Burns Knight & Mark Melnicove
We grabbed this “travel guide” from our local library and turned to page 23 to find out about our first destination, Ethiopia. It will aid you on your trip to Africa’s eastern shores.
The Best Beekeeper of Lalibela: A Tale From Africa by Christina Kessler
We really enjoyed this story folks. So much so, we had to follow up with some honey tasting! Mmmm! Go ‘head and grab you a jar of this goldeny goodness, I promise you won’t regret it. 😉
Did you know there’s something cool, yet still ancient about the town named after a King who legend has it, even the bees obeyed?
Be sure to catch the “in-flight movie” In Focus: The Lalibela Churches (of Ethiopia), to see the breathtaking stone-cut churches in the town of Lalibela.
Meet the locals:
Once you land, you have to get acquainted with the people who call this country home. Teenagers, Addisu and Habtam, are excited to meet you and show you around.
Afterwards, feel free to continue your explorations on this site. 🙂
Day #2 – Djibouti
Listen to this song to get in the mood for more travel and fun. It’s chock full of facts and is pretty catchy too. Dance and sing along with characters from the animated educational series, Arthur. You’ll find out D.W. (Arthur’s kid sister) has a lot to say about Africa and you won’t want to miss it! There’s an episode from which this song came. It covers plenty other African countries as well. Watch it here:
Catch a Flick:
The U.S. is known as a melting pot of cultures and ideas but did you know that title is not too far fetched for the country of Djibouti as well? It borders the Red Sea, is extremely close to Yemen and is surrounded by Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia. Not to mention and it was formerly a French colony. Though small in stature, this country is bursting with culture! See more here:
Looking for something to keep the kids busy while on your trip? Check out Lake Assal, the world’s saltiest lake located right here in Djibouti.
And while you’re at it, since salt mining is common in this country, why not take it to a whole new level and “mine some salt” of your own?
Day #3 – Somalia
Tired yet? Hope not. Get ready to see Somalia!
Sing along and learn the Somali alphabet!
Refer to page 30 of your travel guide, Africa Is Not a Country, by Mary Burns Knight & Mark Melnicove for pointers on today’s trek.
The well known children’s book, Jumbo Means Hello: Swahili Alphabet Book, by Muriel Feelings, is a must read when trying to grasp the language so akin to numerous East Africans, including the people of Somalia.
I know you’re familiar with sun-dried tomatoes, but in Somalia, solar-cooking is taken to another level! See how it’s done in this video:
And in case you wanna try some solar cooking of your own, here’s a solar oven you can make.
Happy travels folks!
Who knows, we may happen to bump into each other. My kids and I have been traveling these countries this week as well. 😉
Thanks for reading. Be sure to join us next week for Part 2 of the We Went to Africa series! We’ll be going to Egypt, Sudan and Libya.
See you soon and I hope you don’t get too jet-lagged from all your traveling. 😉
** Please note: I must give credit where credit is do. I stumbled upon our first “trips” to Africa from a fellow homeschool mama by the name of Morah Alizah. She has tons of knowledge and great information on her own blog/website. She helped shape our initial introductions to Africa which have morphed into what they are today. So I must give her a huge shout out and cyber hug! You can see what she’s up to at www.morahsheli.com. 🙂