Take Mali

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Take Mali
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take-maliPrimary and Secondary. This project uses French within the Key Stage 2  and Key Stage 3 Framework for Languages, to explore whether tourism can lift people out of poverty, in Mali, West Africa.

The Take Mali resource pack (Take Mali order form) provides a range of exciting video, audio and ICT based activities offering an insight into some of the people, places and traditions of this culturally rich country. Learners can engage with local Malian children and adults, listen to authentic French and compare their daily lives, values and attitudes. Furthermore, opportunities are provided to explore the effects of tourism, fairtrade and sustainable development, and to reflect on these important issues in the global dimension.

A traditional bogolon design by a Year 5 pupilTake Mali has had a very successful year in 2012.  Many schools across the UK are now using the resource both at KS2 and KS3, and responses from teachers have been very positive! The resource and website are even being used internationally in some educational institutions in the USA and Australia.

We would welcome news of how your school has used the resource, so it can be shared with others. Please see the Take Mali website if you would like to share your work.

We are delighted that the government has recently proposed legislation to make learning a Modern Foreign Language a requirement from KS2, and we are sure that Take Mali will be a useful resource to support schools with this.

The Dogon region in Mali Sadly, news from Mali itself has been less positive. This year many of the people and places which feature in the Take Mali resource are in desperate circumstances following a military coup, which has left the country in a state of political instability. Alongside this, a devastating drought has affected parts of Mali, bringing with it further hardship and suffering. 

If you would like to find out more about the current situation in Mali, and how your school can support its people at this time, please see the Take Mali website

Sharon Tanner and Matt Partridge, authors of Take Mali are now developing a new resource Hola Perú  which will be available in the Autumn Term 2012. This is an exciting cross-curricular resource for KS2 and KS3, which explores the country of Peru through the Spanish language. See the new Hola Peru website for further details.


takemali-AToure-Malian-Community-Council-pupilsTake Mali launched at House of Commons


The unique cross-curricular learning resource Take Mali was launched in December 2010 at the House of Commons and hosted by Rt. Hon. Ben Bradshaw MP for Exeter.  

Amongst those in attendance were the Vice-Chairman of the Malian Community Council, a representative from the African Directorate, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the French attaché from the French Embassy, plus modern foreign language advisers, teachers from across the UK, representatives from international development organisations, including Fairtrade Foundation, and members of the 'Friends of Mali' development group.

Project Co-ordinators Sharon Tanner and Matt Partridge outlined the aims of the project and demonstrated some activities with pupils from Milton Abbot Primary School, Holwell Primary School and Pilton Community College in Devon.

Guests also heard from Mark Lazarowicz MP, Shadow Minister for International Development, who stressed the importance of development education. He commented that:

"This is an excellent project, and shows how development education contributes to the broader curriculum. I was very impressed by the way the project integrates development issues with language, geography, as well as multicultural work."

Also, Chris Wakely, former Languages Adviser for Devon, highlighted the importance of language learning for Primary age pupils and finally, Badia Coulibaly, Vice-Chairman of the Malian Community Council, based in London, spoke about Mali and the development work of the Mali Community Council.

takemali-kora-pupilsGuests were treated to live music from acclaimed kora player Sona Jobarteh and tasty refreshments in the form of traditional Mali Yam chips with chilli sauce and Devon cream teas!

One guest said: "It was a privilege to attend the highly successful launch of 'Take Mali'. It was also clear from talking to a wide mix of people there how much enthusiasm and excitement the resource has generated. I believe Take Mali can give teachers confidence and young children opportunity to enjoy a positive learning experience in these areas that will significantly enhance their education and influence future attitudes to social justice and global citizenship."

takemali-artefactsAn artefact box to support the Take Mali project is available to Global Centre members for loan. Contents include authentic Fairtrade products from the Dogon region of Mali, such as an indigo cotton skirt wrapper, a large water basket, calabash shaker and thumb piano. Also included are storybooks in English and French, a flag, a map and a CD of music from Mali. See inventory (PDF 278KB)for full contents.

The box can be loaned for up to 3 weeks and costs £30 to members of the Global Centre. To become a member, please join us.

To check availability of the loan box and make a booking, please This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone 01392 438811.

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