As a parent and former children’s librarian, alphabet books are a constant in my reading rotation. Each one has its own personal flair, but it is hard to find ones where Z stands for something other than Zebra, and even fewer that blend English with other languages. That is why I am thrilled to share A is for Agbada, an alphabet book written by Colorado-based authors about the vibrant country of Nigeria.
Beginning with A for Agbada, this linguistic and cultural adventure guides readers through the English alphabet using words and illustrations that are iconic to Nigeria. Each page features a letter, an accompanying word beginning with that letter, and a short sentence using that word. Rhymes occur every two pages, linking the phrases together using a singsong rhythm that will appeal to readers of all ages. Please see my full review here.
Because so few books of this nature exist, two sisters—and moms of young children—saw a glaring need for a story incorporating African language and culture while reinforcing important early learning milestones. Children from all backgrounds will benefit from this colorful and educational book while increasing their understanding of the traditions of Nigeria. Begun as a Kickstarter campaign, the sisters hit their goal within twenty-four hours and are on track to publish officially in September, 2021. Haven’t contributed yet? Head over to their campaign to support this awesome mission (and get some fun surprises, too)!
I highly recommend this book to library collections for young children. The more people experience this delightful book, the more connected readers will be to African culture, no matter their personal background.
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