Katia Novet Saint-Lot
Illustrated by Dimitrea Tokunbo
Hardcover, $16.95, ISBN 978-0-88448-298-7
9 x 10, 32 pages, color illustrations
Amadi is a reluctant reader who discovers for himself why reading can be both informative and fun. Amadi's Snowman can be used as part of a curriculum that explores the subject of books and reading in daily life. It is an excellent book to share with ANY child who may not feel motivated to read. Amadi's Snowman can also be used as part of a curriculum that seeks to introduce elementary aged children to the diverse and interesting African country of Nigeria.
Amadi's Snowman will help inspire classroom conversations about:
Heads Up! Readers might wonder why Amadi does not go to school. This is an important conversation. Here are some facts to help avoid the stereotyping of Nigeria as "just another African country that does not offer free school," or Amadi as "just another African kid who is not in school."
In the 1970s school in Nigeria was free for all children. An economic crisis in the 1990s, however, caused the Nigerian schools to decentralize, which resulted in some schools needing to charge fees. Even where schools are free, not all children who can attend do attend. The most recent statistics on attendance are: 60.1% of all children of primary school age attend primary school; 63.7% of these are boys; and 56.5% of these are girls. Demographic and Health Survey, 2003, (From huebler.blogspot.com/2005/10/primary-school-attendance-in-nigeria.html )
There are some other reasons why children might not attend school: Depending on where a family lives, school may or may not be free. The children may live too far from the school to attend on a regular basis. Parents might want their children to attend school, but they might also need their children at home to help earn money or do chores. Parents of girls from some traditional or religious families might feel school is unnecessary for their daughters.
It might be fun to completely immerse your class with Nigerian stories. Here is a long list to help:
Eight-year old Madoulina, who lives in Cameroon, loves school and dreams of becoming a doctor. But her mother needs her help selling fritters in the marketplace. Until a kind teacher steps forward, offering a solution, Madoulina is afraid she will never reach her dreams.
In a joyous celebration of attending school, six Haitian children run at daybreak through fields, markets and town to arrive at their school house to learn.
A beautiful look at what is available for sale at marketplaces all over the world from Ugandan cows to fish in New York City.
Tilbury House, Publishers
103 Brunswick Avenue
Gardiner, Maine 04345
You can scroll down the very interesting statistics listings to find schooling information at
This site from Cornell University examines how gender might influence school attendance, as well as how economic status influences school attendance:
For information on the Igbo people of Nigeria, try:
This website has neat information about family structure, games, and food in Nigeria: