The World and Its People

Chapter 19: West Africa

Web Activity Lesson Plans

In this chapter, students learned about the geography and culture of West Africa, made up of Nigeria, the Sahel countries, and the coastal countries. Liberia, one of the coastal countries, is the only West African nation that was never a colony. In this activity, students will learn more about the history and settlement of Liberia.

Lesson Description
Students will visit the Library of Congress Web site to explore the African-American Mosaic feature. They will discover the reasons behind the establishment of Liberia, learn more about the nation's first president, and will then write a letter to a newspaper stating why they believe African Americans should or should not emigrate to Liberia.

Instructional Objectives

  1. Students will be able to summarize the reasons behind and the history of the founding of Liberia.
  2. Students will be able to argue whether African Americans should live in Liberia.

Student Web Activity Answers

  1. It was formed in 1817 to send free African Americans to Africa as an alternative to emancipation in the United States.
  2. Liberia was founded as a colony by the American Colonization Society in 1822. It was ordered to proclaim independence in 1846 by the ACS because the United States refused to claim it as a sovereign territory. In 1847 it became the independent nation of Liberia.
  3. Joseph Jenkins Roberts, a wealthy Monrovia merchant who had emigrated in 1829 from Petersburg, Virginia, was elected the first president of an independent Liberia in 1848.
  4. Tuskegee Institute
  5. Students' letters will vary.
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