We took a delightful literary trip across Southern Africa last week with stops through Madagascar and South Africa.
Madagascar captured my heart 14 years ago when I spent a summer there doing primate field research. Little did I know that years down the line, it would capture my kids' hearts too. By this point, between visits to and camp at my old stomping ground, the Duke Lemur Center, plenty of books and photos, and a healthy collection of stuffed lemurs, the girls now know as much as I do about Madagascar and conservation issues. But we still enjoyed spending a day reading and writing about one of our favorite places.
South African culture and wildlife also fascinated the girls. Since our cousin just spent the year working with great white sharks in South Africa, we thought it would be interesting to study great whites too. One day we hope to take a closer look at them...from an underwater cage.
Southern Africa (South Africa and Madagascar)
Identified and labeled Madagascar and South Africa on map. Explored Malagasy culture by studying paintings, fabrics, jewelry, crafts, photos and books. Wrote stories about lemurs. Wrote book reports on Nelson Mandela. Inspired by Ndebele women of South Africa in "My Painted House," beaded necklaces and painted our own house drawings. Used "My Painted House" for lesson on nouns and adjectives. Studied and painted pictures of great white sharks. Field trip planned to aquarium to see sharks.
Learn about my intro photography curriculum
Documenting Your World Through Photography: An Introductory Course for Elementary and Middle Schoolers
More Around the World Book Lists
East Africa (Part I)
East Africa (Part II) and Central Africa
North Africa (Egypt)
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I'm Julia Soplop, writer and photographer. I believe there is something profound in bearing witness to moments of joy and pain in others’ lives. My husband, three girls and I live outside of Chapel Hill, NC. You can read more about me here.