Teacher's Guide

August 18, 1999 Update
Remember, the "Kids' Versions" are aimed at K-6.

Check out this date's update
The team generated the following reports: Try the following activities:
Abeja - Next Stop Slavery - A Visit to an African Holding Pen

Abeja visits The Cape Coast Castle where slaves were kept before they were shipped away. She discusses the actual history of slave trade in Africa between the natives and Europeans and reflects on the dark side of humanity that allows for such cruelty.

Have students write a "first-hand" account as if they were slaves being kept here until their voyage over the ocean. What would be going through their minds? Have them hold onto these accounts to check after they have learned more about the people of this region and the slave trade to see if they still think it's accurate.

You can also have students answer the questions Abeja raises about the reaction an African had to her (as a person of European descent), where they decide what they would have said or done.

Team - Let's go to Cameroon, NOT!

Want to know why we didn't send the team to Cameroon? High crime, armed banditry, and poor health facilities. We had to skip this beautiful country, but here are some facts, figures and history of Cameroon

This dispatch is a good lesson in planning before you travel. While Cameroon had many attractions, it was too risky to go there. Have your students go in one of two directions: Have them explore what some of the wonderful things are about Cameroon that would make it worth visiting if it were safer, OR have them pick out another country in West Africa and do research on it and come up with a Yes or No list on why they should or should not go.

Kavitha - Accra . . . or Brooklyn? The African Diaspora

Kid's Version Available

Kavitha and Abeja attend the Panafest in Ghana, and discover the similarities between West African and African-American cultures. Includes information on Marcus Garvey and the "Back to Africa" Movement, Rastafarianism, the slave trade, and the African Diaspora.

Have kids make a list of five ways they see that West African and African-American or American culture are similar based on reading the dispatch.

Do your students know who Bob Marley is? Bring a song in to play for them (OR have them listen to the music samples, including reggae, coming to the site in less than a week in the "Multimedia and Special Guests section).

Kevin - It's Been a Hard Day's Night!

Kevin arrives in Accra, Ghana and is greeted by very friendly locals. But he is soon to discover that their "friendliness" is not necessarily genuine.

This dispatch is extremely well written and funny. Might be interesting--and fun--to have kids write a short essay about a travel "mishap" or "misadventure" they had like Kevin's (and if they didn't have one, tell them to make one up). Extra points for any laugh-out-loud passages!

Monica - The People On the Bus Go Up and Down. . . To Ghana and Burkina Faso

Describes a trip by bus from Accra to Bamako, Mali. Highlights the local currency Ghana cedis, problems with traveling by bus, Ashanti Empire, a family in Kumasi, Ougadougou, Pan-African Film Festival (FESPACO) and the local food.

See the suggestion for Kevin's dispatch.

Jasmine - A San Francisco Treat

Kid's Version Available

Jasmine arrives in San Francisco as she prepares herself for her World trek trip to Mali. She introduces her readers to her hometown, Compton, California, as well as her adventures so far in San Francisco.

Have kids imagine that they are going to be world trekkers for a day! Have them bring to class their backpacks with 3 things they MUST HAVE (i.e., Journal, toothbrush, money, book, stuffed animal). Have them explain why they need to bring these things along...and remind them that they have to carry them on their backs, like Jasmine!

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