Exploring Africa is produced and developed by the African Studies Center (ASC) at Michigan State University in an effort to address the severe shortage of high quality African resources available to students and educators, particularly at the K-12 level. As an academic community comprised of more than 200 scholars who study Africa from a diversity of more than 20 disciplines, we are acutely aware of the need to provide learners and educators with resources that help them to engage Africa in a comprehensive manner, taking into account the continent’s rich diversity and complexities. Recognizing that for many people their only formal introduction to Africa will come in during their K-12 schooling, Exploring Africa is a serious attempt to provide this important community with curricular resources based on solid interdisciplinary scholarship that provide them with the opportunity to adequately engage Africa through knowledge, resources, and thoughtful learning activities that allow students to construct a more comprehensive and sympathetic appreciation for and understanding of Africa.
The MSU African Studies Center is a National Resource Center for the study of Africa (Title VI Center) that mandates the Center to actively engage the K-12 community in promoting the study of Africa. In addition, the Center is a unit of Michigan State University, the oldest Land Grant university in the U.S., that takes seriously its charge to share knowledge with educational communities locally, regionally and nationally. In the spirit of this dual mandate, the ASC and its faculty has a long tradition of working with the K-12 community (students and teachers). Exploring Africa is a commitment to work with and share high quality curricular materials with this important community in a more comprehensive and systematic manner.