Book Box "African Worlds"

Projekt Bücherkiste © Goethe-Institut Johannesburg

The book box "African Worlds" is a literary canon of diverse books within which the protagonists are from Africa and which experience and master exciting adventures in their countries.

Although literary works are increasingly integrated into teaching German as a secondary language, most learning institutions in southern Africa barely have any reading materials which reflect the living reality of the learners. So far, language lessons either make use of classical German literature or simple excerpts from text books. The project "African Worlds" seeks to close this gap by equipping several institutions with book boxes.

The composed and to be extended compilation of books consists of books from three categories: 1. Picture and children's books, 2. Books for learning syllables and reading and 3. Young Adult novels. Because of the different formats, these books can be used in different ways and across several target groups in lessons. Aside from reading out loud and as an integral part for German classes or for academic inspection, these books can also be borrowed by interested students. All books either have German as their original language or were translated into German to be used in foreign language classes and in early reading lesson.

The book boxes will initially be distributed to 13 PASCH-school, seven teaching resource centres and German departments at universities. Simultaneously, the books will be presented during skill enhancement trainings for teachers and resulting teaching materials will be made available to participating teachers.

Aside from well-known Young Adult authors, African authors whose books have a German translation are preferentially added added to the compilation. By that, the project "African Worlds" seeks to attain more goals than the advancement of reading skills and to nurture an interest in reading:
The learners can identify with the authentic figures and stories, the diversity of the African continent is brought to the classroom, stereotypical writing about Africa is averted, the profession as an author is made more attainable and African authors and their stories are supported.