Exploring Our World: People, Places, and Cultures

Chapter 20: History and Cultures of Africa South of the Sahara

Web Activity Lesson Plans

In this chapter, students have learned that Africa south of the Sahara is home to an ancient civilization whose culture has been influenced by centuries of trade with Asians and Europeans. While the traders came for gold, spices, ivory, and slaves they left behind their language, religion, and architecture. The Swahili language and culture, based on that of the African Bantu people, developed with strong Arab and Persian influences. Students will learn more about how these Asian influences shaped the lives and traditions of the people of East Africa.

Lesson Description
Students will visit the Wonders of the African World Web site, produced by the Public Broadcasting System, to learn more about the Swahili people, their colorful history, and how they have influenced the world.

Instructional Objectives

  1. The student will be able to identify and describe the various cultures that influenced the Swahili people.
  2. The student will be able to explain European influence on the area, particularly during the 1600s.
  3. The student will be able to explain how and why the Swahili Coast of Africa came to play such a significant role in the history of the New World.

Student Web Activity Answers

  1. Kenya and Tanzania
  2. Africa and Asia
  3. Islam
  4. gold, ivory, and slaves
  5. Vasco da Gama

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