“Mom, I learned about the Good Samaritan today. Did you know that it’s ALWAYS good to help others? Even if you don’t know them? Mr. Matt taught us that today in class…. He learned it from Jesus. He taught us that if someone beats someone else up, we should help them by taking care of them and giving them Band Aids. He’s so fun. He even let us PRETEND to beat him up!!”
Yup, that’s my preschooler’s version of the Good Samaritan. We love books that teach us compassion, understanding, and empathy.
By the Zambezi River
An African Version of the Good Samaritan Story
From the Sikulu Website:
This is the first in a series of adventures that follow Sikulu the spider and Harambe the Hippo as they travel to different countries in Africa. In this story, they are in the village of Sioma where they encounter an old woman in need of help. The other animals all have convenient excuses for not helping while Sikulu & Harambe are the only ones who do.
As we read the story, my children were leaning towards me on their knees, wondering who and WHY nobody would help the woman near the river. In fact, my daughter interrupted the reading to ask, “Mom! Her clothes are right there! Why don’t they help?!”
I could see her frustration and the look on her face as she just desperately wanted to jump in the book and help. A few things I really loved:
-The Illustrations: They were intriciately drawn, but colored in as if by a child. That really stood out to me because it really brought the story to my child’s level, helped them feel as if another child may have colored the pages in.
-The Captions: Throughout the book you see voice captions from the Sikulu, the Spider. As I read those captions, they just laughed out loud hysterically!
-Glossary of Terms: My children were able to learn more about the Zambian culture by reading the end pages where it discuses the moral of the story, pronunciations, and definitions of words used throughout the book.
-The Length: I forgot to time the reading, but it took us about 10-15 minutes to read through it. For us, that’s acceptable because we must incorporate my toddler in our bedtime stories and his attention span doesn’t last long. We enjoy actually talking about the book afterwards. As you can see below:
I get a little teary eyed just watching my children talk about what they felt by reading Sikulu & Harambe. It’s surreal. Definitely a keeper for our personal bookshelf.
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