Title: Jambo Means Hello
Author: Muriel Feelings
Illustrator: Tom Feelings
Publisher: Puffin; July 15, 1992
Topic/Theme: Alphabet, Africa, African Culture, Swahili Language
Ages: 3 and up
Opening: A arusi is a wedding.
Jambo Means Hello is a fun alphabet that introduces basic Swahili vocabulary. The book gives a word in Swahili for each letter in the Swahili alphabet. The Swahili alphabet doesn't have the letters Q or X therefore only has 24 letters. Along with each word is a pronunciation key and a short paragraph telling a little bit about the word and its context in rural African society.
Swahili is spoken widely in eastern Africa, can you find and name the countries on this map? Lesson plan that includes a word quilt activity Listen to a Swahili Folktale. Learn about Kenya. Kenyan flag and map coloring page.
Why I like this book:
This is a book I used to read as a kid. I loved it. I memorized every word and considered myself fluent in Swahili! Lol Then when the Lion King came out I was thrilled that I knew a lot of the words. The illustrations are beautiful and reflect the word of the alphabet. Just a note though, the book focuses mostly on African rural and village life and traditions. Nonetheless, this book is a wonderful introduction to Kenyan culture and language.