African Activities is proud the have worked with a number of nurseries including Yellow Dot, Paint Pots and Hungerford Nursery School. We felt you might like to know some of the activities used during Africa weeks in the nurseries.
Many nurseries begin with a charitable focus – this can bring real clarity and purpose to the learning and exploring. Please let us know if you would like to know more about our work in Buipe.
Many nurseries will work with the Africa theme for a scheme of work that ay cover a week or even longer. A country focus can be helpful, but is not essential. A topic tables can be great for letting children handle new objects and there are plenty of great books to enhance the learning.
The Africa focus can enable families to get involved, offering opportunities you may find parents and children willing to share their experiences and culture. This can lead some of your learning and can enhance and build your community. For example children might want to wear clothing they have bought or parents might like to share some food or even recipes.
There are many simple craft activities. We find making jewellery works well and enables the children to wear and engage in their crafting at a deeper level.
Cloth can be used to transform an area and really change the atmosphere. Finally of course we encourage lots of drumming!
“The experience was totally magical. All of the children enjoyed themselves and joined in. Kwame was so kind, sensitive and gentle and very supportive to those children that needed extra help and time. the children have continued to talked about the experience within their play and at home with their parents. The children loved to see Kwame in his African clothes and very much enjoyed playing the drums. Kwame was early to arrive in the morning, very organised and very polite. it was a joy to have him at Hungerford Nursery for the day! we look forward to seeing him again in the future. Thank You!!”
Kwame recently enjoyed a day with Archbishop Wake Primary School. He worked for the day with their two year two classes and was delighted to take them on a tour of Drumming, Dance and storytelling.
“Great at communications. Fair price offered the children an amazing experience”
Rosewood is a school for pupils with profound and multiple learning difficulties and Kwame worked with our post 16 group.
The drumming workshops led by Kwame are very popular at Woodlands School where pupils and staff enthusiastically join in with the drumming, singing and dancing.
The hall is set up to impress all with colour and instruments displayed invitingly and the session tutors in bright, traditional clothing let pupils know that they are to experience something new.
Kwame brings a drum for everyone and plenty of percussion instruments to ensure that all can join in. Whilst he can engage 40+ pupils who have severe learning difficulties on his own (with school staff to facilitate), the day is enhanced when he brings a second performer such as Pape to lead the dancing and support the drumming.
We look forward to welcoming African Activities back to Woodlands next academic year.
A fantastic opportunity for schools to celebrate a long standing relationship, delve into a new culture and celebrate difference within their own classrooms.
Now, we rarely tackle this directly, because we believe people are allowed their own freedoms and can be called to all art forms that call to their heart. But honestly if you want an enriching cultural experience in your classroom you would do well to check with your provider that the practitioner visiting is from and of that culture.
If you have diversity in your classroom what message do you think it sends that even on a day to celebrate their culture they still do not see themselves represented?
What message does it send a classroom without diversity?
Being of a culture means you have an intimate depth and knowledge, an alternative perspective – you can catch the curve ball question and turn it into one of those wonderful educational experiences we all do this for.
We all drum regularly with British guys, we care for them deeply and really admire their skills. But it doesn’t mean they understand the culture, it means they learned a bit about a bit of it!
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. We are in classrooms daily. We take this responsibility of breaking down stereotypes seriously. We talk about a diversity we know exists. We will not tell your class everyone in Africa drums and lives a romantic communal life. We will not tell you we are all poor and in need of your help. We do not claim to represent all Ghanaians, Senegalese, Gambians of Guineans. We all have friends like my mate Counsellor (crazy nick names are a thing invite me to your school and I’ll tell you all about it) – he is a great accountant, a bit of a recluse and he really, really can’t dance.
So as we look to celebrate a long relationship, with moments of great joy and great pain, it probably needs careful handing. Please look to call on an organisation who can offer a genuine cultural experience, within its context.
Locally to us in Southampton we have the fantastic Art Asia.