Monday, April 26, 2010

Young Children's Books about Ethiopia

Unfortunately, I don't yet have any first hand knowledge of the following five children's books about Ethiopia. So I'd really appreciate it if you left a comment with your thoughts if you have any of the books...thanks!

Journey to Ethiopia with Captain Addis and Hanna

Product description from the publisher: This is a wonderful children s book that takes young children on an exciting Journey to Ethiopia. A young girl who lives in America, Hanna, decides to write about Ethiopia for a school writing contest. Hanna is so excited when a special pilot, Captain Addis, arrives suddenly and takes her to Ethiopia! Hanna discovers her pride and love for Ethiopia as she travels to her families home country. She learns about the calendar system, New Year celebrations, visits the Simien Mountains and the Blue Nile, makes a friend with broken Amharic and sees the country very different than she imagined. Hanna and Captain Addis travel to exciting places all over Ethiopia. Join them on their journey!!!
Amazon product description: Abeba Goes to Bed is about Abeba, an Ethiopian girl. As time for bed approaches, Abeba says good night to those she loves and cares about in four different languages (English, Amharic, French and German). Containing only a few words and adorable illustrations, with a family tree and a favorite Ethiopian lullaby, this is a perfect read for all the little ones and offers parents a unique and beautiful way to ease their children towards bedtime.

Counting Addis Ababa

Amazon product description: "Counting Addis Ababa," beautifully teaches young children the basics of counting from numbers one to ten in English, Amharic, and Oromiffa. Full page, full color illustrations accompany each counting lesson, depicting lovely scenes typical of life in Addis Ababa, with runners, women at market, young children, chickens, donkeys, and more. Children from all over will appreciate the bright colors, interesting scenes, and familiar faces of the characters in the book. A fun and colorful way to engage your child's early education.

Our First Amharic Words

Amazon product description: "Our First Amharic Words" has 75 Amharic words transliterated for easy pronunciation. Each word label includes the transliteration, English and Amharic language script called "Fidel".
Each word can also be heard on by native Amharic speakers.
Word categories include body parts, toys, animals, relationships, feelings, numbers, shapes and colors. The book is filled with beautiful photos of over 26 Ethiopian born children of ages ranging from infant to teenager.
Traditional Ethiopian items are used in the book and include a cultural explanation on the "What is it?" page. Also included is a map of Ethiopia and a fidel chart with pronunciation guide.

The Perfect Orange

From Publisher's Weekly: The author and illustrator of Nekane, the Lami & the Bear present the second volume in the Toucan Tales series of international folktales. Discovering a perfect orange in her Ethiopian mountain village, Tshai travels to the city to tender her prize to the great Nigus. When the girl passes the house of the Lord Hyena, the jeering animal scorns her silly gift. But the ruler himself is so moved that he tries to reward Tshai with riches. When she refuses, Nigus orders his Royal Chamberlain to follow her and give her a donkey whose saddle bags are filled with gold and jewels. The greedy hyena hastens to offer Nigus his bountiful lands and cattle. In return, the wise Nigus bestows on the crafty hyena "our most prized possession": one perfect orange. Li's watercolors contrast the cocoa-brown hues of the countryside and buildings with the stark white robes and brilliantly colored accessories of traditional Ethiopian dress; it's odd, however, that his Ethiopian characters have such pink skin. Araujo, who came across this tale while working in the Harare region of Ethiopia, spices up his retelling by incorporating Amharic words and phrases. Ages 3-12.

I do own and highly recommend Tsion's Life. Here is my review.

Again, I'd love to hear your thoughts on any of the above books. Thank you...


Amy said...

We have Our First Amharic Words and really like it. We haven't 'used' it much, but it has great photos in it. There are Ethiopian children as well as adoptive families represented (ex.- for grandfather, it shows a white grandfather with an Ethiopian grandchild). I think it'll be nice to have it at home when the boys come home.
I just ordered Counting Addis Ababa- I'm excited to get that one as it's supposed to have numbers in English, Amharic and Oromo (can't remember how to spell that one), which is the language we think our boys spoke before coming to the orphanage.

Sharon said...

We also have our first Amharic words. We took it with us when we went to Ethiopia and it was a nice quick reference. I was really thankful for the pictures in it because we could just point to them and she could understand-I really appreciated the emotions with pictures, too.
We love the pictures in Tsion's Life--great for conversation starters.

DaisyJ said...

We have The Perfect Orange. I love that story. It is a good folk tale sort of story from Ethiopia. Jane Kurtz has other stories of the same sort of Folk tale quality.