Last week I travelled to the UK for personal reasons – sister’s graduation. While there I picked up my first homeschool materials shop. The curriculum I’m using “Learn to Grow” was an online download and initially the materials required were pretty much things I could find somewhere between Artworld (art supply store) in Yaba, The Game (department store) in Lekki and Lemon Pips Graffiti (kids art’s shop in Lekki), like card stock, paints, string etc. But as you get deeper into the curriculum the materials become more challenging from a naija mum perspective. Candyland, the board game? Lite Brite? a rain gauge? What about a kid’s stethoscope? Some of these things could be challenging to get hold of if I was an American mom living in New Jersey but for a naija mum even more so. Some of these are vintage americana – whereas I’m UK born and raised. Never heard of Candyland or Lite Brite before. Also then there’s zero chance of procuring such items in Nigeria. I have to buy these things on Amazon then pick them up on my UK visit and bring them back to Lagos with me.
Ditto for books. Public libraries are really dying/dead in Lagos. I think there are a couple of big ones but nothing local/specialising in kids stuff. There’s a private one which is billed as a kind of reading group but they want to charge us 2.5K (about £10 or $15 dollars just to enter the library, which seems a lot without actually borrowing a book . So I also need to bring all my books or get kindle copies. The situation with books is actually kind of sad in Nigeria. I loved books so much – I wrote my first book of poetry aged 6 and I published my first novel by 18. Raised by a single mum in London, I didn’t have many toys (I had enough don’t worry) but second hand books were so easy to get hold of and so cheap I had so many books I used to use them to build castles!!! Anyway so the curriculum is great for planning ahead in what I need and bringing it back. Plus my husband says I should look at this as an opportunity to be creative. *sigh* Am trying ooo