Homeschooling through Africa

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We are having so much fun learning around the world. This week’s journey took us through Africa. My son has always had a passion for animals and dreams of going on a safari so this week was his pick. We had so much fun exploring the folktales of Africa and observing animals and their adaptations to survive in the wild. We use Beast Academy as our math foundation (with prodigy and to do math for fluency support). The rest of our learning is done through literature. Join along as we explore Africa:

Media:
1. My children love exploring the world through the eyes of the adventurous, Bucket List Family. Watch as they travel through Tanzania. We love to watch these 10-25min clips during lunch or downtime when we’re looking for a break. The family does a great job of showing the natural landscape while encouraging children to be brave.

2. Tinga Tales was a fun to start our day each morning. Each child selected the tale for the day and we enjoyed the folktales as a foundation for conversations in reading, writing, and science.

3. Wild Kratts is always a favorite to explore animal adaptations and what a fun comparison to be used with Tinga Tales to compare and contrast the two styles of shows. Both are fiction with the intention to entertain, but Tinga Tales are folktales, while Wild Kratts aims to teach about real animals and their adaptations in a fictional story.
a. The Most Deadly Animals in Africa . You can also look up the following episodes (or books) that take place in the African Savanna depending on the animals you want to explore:

101: Mom of a Croc
103: Aardvark Town
110: Honey Seekers
117: Elephant in the Room
118: Let the Rhinos Roll!
123: Cheetah Racer
125: Mimic
126: Caracal-Minton
127: Zig-Zagged
130: The Food Chain Game
135: Quillber’s Birthday Present
140: Raptor Round-Up
201: Bad Hair Day
202: Race for the Hippo Disc
203: Creature Power Challenge
204: Termites vs. Tongues
206: Neck and Neck

Reading Book List:
Chapter books for independent reading:
Magic Treehouse: Lions at Lunchtime and Good Morning, Gorillas

Picture Books for read alouds:
Living in South Africa
Beatrice’s Goat 
Anansi The Spider
Count Your Way Through Kenya
Mama Miti
Planting the trees of Kenya
A Story A Story
Wangari Maathati: The Woman Who Planted Millions of Trees

Nonfiction:
1. Little Dreamers (story on Wangari)
2. The Atlas Obscura Explorers Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid 
3. Ready to Read: Living in South Africa


Art:
1. Use Picture Pie 2 to create a lion or an elephant using geometric shapes and vivid colors

Science:
1. Animal Atlas pg. 8-17 with focus on the Wildebeest, Sea Turtles, Fruit Bats, and African Sardines

2. A great way to explore animal adaptations is through the Who would Win Series, such as Who Would Win? Lions vs. Tiger. Children can predict the winner and then read about how they measure up to each other to see the real victor.

Writing:
1. After watching Tinga Tales daily, we brainstormed on different African animals that we could create our own Tinga Tale for. We discussed the different characteristics of each animal and silly ways they could have developed that characteristic. The brainstorming was done orally by the kids while I wrote down their ideas. On Thursday and Friday they wrote their own Tinga tales with colorful art to match their stories. We discussed how we used real facts to create a fictional story (fiction: animal, location, characteristcs nonfiction: why/how the characteristic came to be)

2. Create a Spider Story where a helpless animal is the underdog who outsmarts a more cunning animal. Day 1 brainstorm helpless animals and cunning animals. Select one of each and brainstorm a story.

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