learning about our compassion sponsored child's country

June 9, 2010

Learn more about sponsoring a child.

You've probably heard me mention Compassion before--it's a big part of our lives.
#1. Because we've been sponsors for the past 15 years
#2. Because my husband works for this organization.
Since he works for Compassion, my husband is always visiting Compassion projects overseas and meeting children currently enrolled in the program as well as those that have graduated from it. Every so often, some graduates visit the United States to share their stores and when they do, Juliet and I LOVE to meet with them and get to know them.
Right now, there are four Kenyan graduates in the U.S. for the summer and we got to meet them a few weeks ago. Since we sponsor a child in Kenya, I've been doing a few crafts and projects with Juliet to help her learn a little more about the country.
I thought I'd share what we've been doing. Even if you don't sponsor a child, these activities are great for learning about any country in general!

1. Locate your sponsored child's country on a map.
I printed a map of Africa and a map of Kenya for Juliet to look at and color. (Print maps of various sizes for free at Owl and Mouse Educational Software) You can see that I had her color in the country of Kenya on the African map (we first located it using our globe, and then she colored it in.) Then I let her paint the map of Kenya. We are sending this map to our sponsored child as a "letter" from Juliet.

2. Learn about your sponsored child's national flag.
Again, you can find free printable world flags and black and white printable flags easily online. We did a fun centerpiece craft project with our flags, but you could color them, paint them, or make them out of felt!

3. Read books about or set in your sponsored child's country. 

We have a few books that feature swahili words and also a few that are stories set in Kenya. 

Papa, Do You Love Me?
One we recently read and loved is Papa, Do You Love Me? by Barbara M. Joosse--a story about a Maasai father and son. 

4. Share your projects with your sponsored child. 

We hung our maps and flags on our refrigerator for a few days, but soon they will be sent to our sponsored child as "letters" from Juliet. If you do sponsor with Compassion, you know how important writing letters to your sponsored child is. These projects are a great way for younger children to communicate with their Compassion friends before they are able to write on their own. 

You can only send flat items to sponsored children, so these embellished flags won't make it to Kenya. But we did take a picture of Juliet sitting under her creations to send along with her maps and flags. Pictures are another fun and easy way to share your family and your life with your sponsored child. 

How do you connect with your sponsored children or teach your children about other countries? Have any great resources to share? 

If you don't sponsor a child, but would like to learn more, visit Compassion's website for more information or feel free to email me--I'd love to tell you more about it!

{I'm linking up with Works for Me Wednesday @ We Are That Family--head over for more great "works for me" ideas and No Time for Flashcard's Show us Your Best Link up!, also Impress Your Sponsored Kid!)

works for me wednesday at we are that family


Ticia said...

I bet with all his travels it's hard not to constantly find new children to sponsor.

Bitterroot Mama said...

I really enjoyed your post. We sponsor 2 Compassion kids and I just sent a letter off to one of them earlier this week. I try to send one letter to each of them per quarter. These post ideas will be fun to do when my girlie gets older! Thanks!

Em and Lib said...

This is an answer to prayer. I was just mentally scheming this morning on how to get my 4 boys more interested in writing to our Companssion Girl in Kenya. I'm ordering the books and printing maps now! THANK YOU so much for this TIP! *Blessings* Lib

Michelle said...

This is a FANTASTIC post! We have 6 Compassion kids in our family and aim to write at least twice a month. To the previous poster, Christianne, please work letter writing into your monthly schedule. It means SO much!

Raising a Happy Child said...

This is a very interesting information. We definitely want to get involved in sponsoring a child this year, because I think that the different world and different way of life will become a little more concrete for Anna. You did wonderful projects with Juliet

Jennifer said...

I am in awe of your creativity! We sponsor a child from the Philippines, and I know my kids will have a great time doing these suggestions. Thank you!

Ana Degenaar said...

I worked for the S.O.S Villages and what a letter can do in a kid's life is amazing, the encouragement that they get from it does replace their need for a mom or a dad in many cases. I love it!

vanessa @ silly eagle books said...

Thanks for all the encouraging comments, everyone! I hope you all have fun doing some of these projects with your kids.

Emily said...

This is great Vanessa! I know I'm a little late. I'm behind on my blogs! I will most definitely be referring back to this. I think as we take a "school break" this summer we will do a lap book on Haiti, where our Compassion Child is from. This is a great post! Thank you for sharing!

Rachel said...

Great idea! I'm saving this for when my daughter is older, two is probably a little young - but it will be great when she's bigger! Thanks for sharing. We absolutely love Compassion International.

oh amanda {impress your kids} said...

(do you not put pics of J on your blog? do i need to take that one down on my blog?)

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