A Continent Study of AFRICA for Kids

Monday, February 16, 2015

It’s a month of African studies in the house.  Mavi enjoyed learning about this beautiful continent, its geography, exploring the different places and landmarks, the wildlife and habitats and of course the different culture and traditions that make Africa unique!
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Map and Location.  Just like in any of our continent study, we always start with identifying the location of the continent.  Though Mavi is already familiar of the African continent, he still likes using our Montessori Continent Map, which I got from Tower High Learning.  I got it for a reasonable price and excellent in quality! I purchased a few materials from them and will talk about it in a separate post. You can also purchase this map in Amazon US or in Amazon UK. The cards that he is using are from my shop, "Animals of Africa". 
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Plotting the animals in the continent map.  He loves doing this!
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I am so pleased with the purchase of this world map puzzle. I got this for 50% off in a local bookshop.  We can work with individual continents or work with it entirely. For suggestions on map puzzles you can check my post: World Map Jigsaw Puzzle Recommendations.  
DSC_0886Flags.  We love working with pin maps!  This activity is to familiarize Mavi with the different countries in the African continent and their flag symbol. These Africa flags are made from toothpicks and the flag pack from my shop, "Flags of Africa".
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We love LEGO and we use them in so many ways!  Here, I instructed Mavi to create the South African flag using his LEGO.  This is a similar activity with our Asian Study of flags.  After which, he worked on his African flag nomenclature cards.  The picture card of the South African flag is in the wrong position, reason why I have to remind Mavi to be very careful in positioning flags because they might be interpreted in a wrong way.
DSC_0940 He likes positioning his other “favourite” flags in the plate.
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Landmarks.  Of course, we made our pyramid version using LEGO. This is what Mavi picked because it is easier to replicate. The cards in the picture below were printed from the printable, "Africa Landmarks" which you can buy from my shop.
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Animals and their Habitats.  This is by far Mavi’s favourite.  He’s not yet over with his animal toys and still loves playing with them.

First one, learning about the different animals in Africa.  Mavi reads the fact cards of my "Animals of Africa" and loves talking about it while he play pretends.DSC_0902
If you have a preschooler, it is best to have a matching game. Using animal figures (these are Safari Toobs Wild), match the figure to the picture.
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Or in case the figures are not available, you can still use the picture card and label (3 part cards)  for a 3 period lesson in African Animals.  Mavi still loves doing this even though he can easily read and finish the entire activity in a minute.
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Another favourite activity is matching the animal skin covers! Wooohooo! Aren’t these cool? Mavi was so enthralled with this! He did a similar activity on this here.  Next time we study Africa, we’ll paint the patterns!  Your preschoolers will definitely enjoy this! These Africa animals skin cover cards are taken from my "Africa in a Nutshell" which you can also buy from my shop.  If you want to know more about the content of this Africa learning pack I've discussed it in detail in this post, Africa in a Nutshell.
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Again, if you don’t have animal figures, you can match the animal skin patterns with a picture of an animal, similar to the ones shown here.
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And I asked Mavi to pick between a zebra and giraffe, he wanted to work on zebra… so here he is learning the parts of a zebra!  This will familiarize children with the different parts of the animal, and how it is similar to other animals that they are familiar with.  Another great thing about this activity for preschoolers is that it will enhance their reading skills :) The 3-Part cards are also from my "Africa in a Nutshell" product.  
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And this is how we study the habitats of Africa. Using our Animal Habitats cards, we recreated the map of Africa with its biomes using Playdoh.  We also identified the animals that live in each habitat. We followed the colour code of our map and cards.africa habitat
Plants.  We use our Plant Atlas file from my shop to learn about the plants that grow in Africa. We worked on the Control Chart as well, differentiating the plant life in each continent.
bot_leafchartLanguage.  Mavi worked on this briefly.  I printed this African proverbs from here and we used Montessori grammar symbols to identify the nouns, verbs and adjectives in the phrases.  This is also a copy work in case you want your kids to practice writing.
DSC_0124Culture and Beliefs.  I’ve been doing research about Africa and made fact cards (significant) for Mavi to read and use. We did some of the activities in the cards, like creating African patterns (designs on textiles), researching about the ethnic tribes of Africa and enjoying the beaded bracelet my friend gave me that resembles African jewelries.
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DSC_0272I’m teaching Mavi how to do research.  We do it using the internet as of the moment but I would like to bring him to the library and do it there as well.  We love our tablet and we use it in so many ways! He loves how this girl looks.
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And he thinks it is cool to have a lip plate!
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Natural Resources.  We did this last year but was not able to touch it because the boys got sick. I also have a product in my shop for this topic, "Natural Resources of the World".
Art.  I purchased art lessons from Deep Space Sparkle and they were all amazing! This one is the Africa art lesson which comprises of learning how to make mud houses, giraffes, African patterns and creating your Maasai Tribe.  See how he applied the patterns on the body of the tribe?
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Videos.  We watched the entire series Africa (BBC TV series) on Netflix. The series was beautifully created and entertaining! It was breathtaking! To see all those beautiful landscapes, different habitats, the richness of wildlife. Just WOW.  Watching this video made us want to jump right then and there in Africa! (And a friend also shared a video of Gambia). Thank you!
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Songs.  We listened to a few songs on YouTube and see how the people used some of the native instruments.

Stories.  I borrowed this book from the library and you can purchase them at Book Depository[aff.link] as well, free shipping!  They contain lots of beautiful African tales and stories. Mavi reads them at night before going to bed.
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World History. And to complete our unit, we did an Ancient Egypt Study.  These figurines are from the Ancient Egypt Safari Toobs and they are awesome! Perfect for hands on learning!  Read more about it here.
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Here’s a summary of the materials we used in this Continent unit:
  1. Flags of Africa
  2. Animals of Africa (3-Part Cards and Fact Sheets)
  3. Landmarks of Africa
  4. Africa in a Nutshell and the post describing its content in detail, link here.
  5. Animal Habitats
  6. Plant Atlas
  7. African Art
  8. African Proverbs
  9. Safari Toobs Ancient Egypt
  10. Safari Toobs Wild
And that’s about it!!  I hope you can pick up a lot of ideas that you can do with your kids or in your school!  You can also checkout my pinterest board for other African activities.  Don’t forget to visit us as well in our other social media sites for updates! Thank you!
Follow Pinay Homeschooler's board Continent Study: Africa on Pinterest.
This post is part of the 12 Months of Montessori Learning which is hosted by Natural Beach Living and The Natural Homeschool.
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Amazing blogs involved in the 12 Months of Montessori Learning

10 comments:

  1. All I have to say is WOW! Such a fabulous unit! I love how you incorporated LEGO. You have so many fabulous components here!

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  2. I love the use of Lego! We have several boxes and I'm always at a loss on how to add them into our lessons. Great post!

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  3. Fantastic! DS is working on The Philippines at the moment and this has given me some great ideas to help him, thank you!

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  4. Wow! I never would have considered using legos for flag work. And using playdough to create biome maps is brilliant. I'm going to need your printables sooner than later. I hope you eventually create them for all continents.

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  5. This was such an awesome post :) The legos were definitely my favorite, such a great idea. Thanks for sharing

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  6. This unit study on Africa is SO amazing! I love everything about it and I especially love the lego flag. I also love the art and the play-dough maps! Awesome work!

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  7. Great ideas! I especially like making flags out of Lego!

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  8. I absolutely love it! we will be making flags using lego!

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  9. I LOVE your Africa Unit SOOO much! It is so amazing and creative! My boys love the cards I printed from your website! I visited all of your posts on the unit and I was wondering, what book of Africa is pictured in your first post about the unit?

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    1. It's My First Irish World Atlas, I got it from the library. I wonder if its available in Amazon. It's a really a good book for kids! And thank you so much for appreciating our works and glad you like our materials. Hope you will have a great time learning!

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