Sunday, March 6, 2011

Kingdoms of West Africa Unit Study

So we have left Egypt and are on our way to the West Sahara to study the Medieval History of West Africa. West Africa had 3 major Empires or Kingdoms which were Mali, Ghana, and Songhay. We are starting in the middle actually with Mali cause we already did some activities and fields trips dealing with Timbuktu. The chronological order though is Ghana, Mali, then Songhay. I will list the online resources we will be using for Mali. As we move into the other 2 kingdoms I will share those resources as well.

Booklist for West African Studies

Ancient and Medieval Africa lesson Plans

West African Kingdoms Powerpoints

Sundiata and Mansa Musa Lesson Plans

Trekking Timbuktu: Mansa Musa

Mali Trade Routes

Mansa Musa's Pilgrimage

The Road to Timbuktu Lesson Plans

West African Trade Map

Africa For Kids

And here is a Youtube Clip from a PBS documentary put together by famous historian and geneologist Henry Louis Gates.
Just double click on the video to take you to youtube and then you can select the other parts to finish the viewing the documentary. Its call Road to Timbuktu.


  1. Looks interesting. How is it going. I will begin my classical journey next year with Ancient History. How are your children responding to this method of learning. I am hoping you are feeling better.

  2. Even though we are more Classical Eclectic my children have always enjoyed the literature rich approach that Classical education provides. They have aquired skills in that I usually dont see in most public school children till Jr. high. Like for instance they navigate the library with ease. If I say this week in science we are going to study amphibians they will go to the non fiction section on animals and look for books on amphibians and they will ask the librarian for picture and story books on the topic as well. They got this from watching me do it for a while. After while I would just train them on how to do it themselves. That is the thing about Classical I like in general is that instead of just plugging away through a curriculum till you are finish you are giving your children tools they can pull from to educate themeselves for life.You are giving them a method of doing things. Most other curriculums you can not easily see the method as a student working your way through it.

  3. Erin, thanks for all of this info on studies on Africa. My children and I will be incorporating some West and Central African studies into our curriculum next term so they can learn about their father's roots and culture more. This is a wonderful spring board for resources!

  4. What a wonderful blessing to have such a rich culture to share with your children. Let me know how it goes.


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