Resources and strategies for challenging stereotypes and teaching about African countries
This list is based on books reviewed and recommended by Africa Access. Visit their website for a detailed database with critiques of hundreds of children's books and texts on Africa. Also, check out their annual Children’s Africana Book Award.
An excellent reading for teachers and parents to discuss is I Didn't Know There Were Cities in Africa! (Teaching Tolerance, Fall 2008). Submitted by Teaching for Change in collaboration with Africa Access, this article critiques the stereotypes in popular children's books and films, helps educators reflect on their own classroom, and provides a list of recommended titles.
Most of the books on these lists are linked for more information or purchase to Bookshop (an indie bookstore platform) and / or Powells.com (an independent, unionized bookstore). A small percentage from book sales through these links goes to Teaching for Change.
Titles with reviews on this site are noted with an asterisk (*).
Organizations and Articles
- Africa Access: Literature recommendations, student research projects, and a detailed database with critiques of hundreds of children's books and texts on Africa. Coordinates the annual Children’s Africana Book Award.
- African Studies K-12 Outreach Programs: University based programs which provide resources and professional development for teachers.
- H-AfrTeach: A discussion list which provides a forum on teaching about Africa at all educational levels.
- Masifunde Sonke Book Project: An education initiative of South Africa Partners promotes children’s literature from the new South Africa. For each book purchased in the United States, South Africa Partners donates a second copy of the same book to a rural or township school in South Africa.
- What Do We Want Children to Learn About Africa? This short article by Margy Burns Knight shares disturbing examples of how contemporary resources for children, including a National Geographic classroom poster, exotify Africans. The article includes the outline for a professional development activity.