The Kwanzaa Coloring Book (Games & Puzzles)


            The Kwanzaa Coloring Book (Games & Puzzles) provides children an opportunity to learn about the principles and symbols of Kwanzaa, a holiday based largely on "Umkhosi," a first fruit celebration of the Zulus in East Africa. More importantly, the new edition of the coloring book teaches children how to celebrate Kwanzaa and gain a deeper understanding of the holiday. For the millions of people that celebrate Kwanzaa, New World Press has published a fanciful book that many parents will find helpful in teaching their children the principles and symbols of this African American holiday. Illustrated by Rachel Mindrup and Rhonda Mathews, the coloring book illustrates the principles in activities through childhood games. Also, many of the symbols of the African American holiday are featured too. In its new publication, The Kwanzaa Coloring Book(Games & Puzzles), the publisher has returned to the theme of providing activities for children and expanded on the coloring pages provided in its previous edition; the new book provides exceptional games and puzzles that buttress children’s understanding of Kwanzaa. In other words, the activities in this edition unpacks the holiday; they provide children with more opportunities to delve into the meaning of the principles and symbols. As a result, children will come away with a deeper understanding of Kwanzaa after paying the games and puzzles. The coloring book is packed with positive images of African-American children and special activities. For example, Rachel Mindrup illustrates the first principle, Umoja (Unity), by depicting African-American children (boys and girls) playing "Ring a-round the Rosy." More than that, the games and puzzles allow children to play tic-tac-toe with African symbols, unscramble words related to Kwanzaa, connect the dots to create a Kwanzaa symbol, take a Kwanzaa spelling test, reveal a hidden symbol using a Kwanzaa Code, and place the mishumma saba in correct order on the kinara. Finally, the publisher has provided an answer key for the activities, an invaluable resource for parents and teachers. Rhonda Mathews has illustrated several of the symbols of Kwanzaa in the coloring book. For instance, the Kinara (the first symbol sketched in the coloring book) resembles what many would recognize as the Jewish Menorah. In addition, she has done an intricate drawing of the Mkeka (a straw mat) that Kwanzaa symbols are placed on during the holiday. Other symbols drawn include the Zawadi (Gifts), Kikombi Cha Umoja (Unity Cup), Vibunzi (Ears of Corn), and Mishumaa Saba (Candles). More than that, the publisher has included activities which are familiar such as a word search and crossword, but New World Press has added challenging endeavors for your children, such as the Kwanzaa Puzzler and Kwanzaa Word Scrambler. The Kwanzaa Coloring Book (Games & Puzzles) reinforces children understanding of Kwanzaa. As a result, watoto will develop a deep understanding of the Nguzo Saba- umoja, kujichagulia, ujima, ujamaa, nia, kuumba, and imani.

Charles Kamau