KIDS IN NIGERIA
Welcome to some facts about kids in Nigeria. Nigeria, an African country on the Gulf of Guinea, has many natural landmarks and wildlife reserves. Protected areas such as Cross River National Park and Yankari National Park have waterfalls, dense rainforest, savanna and rare primate habitats. One of the most recognizable sites is Zuma Rock, a 725m-tall monolith outside the capital of Abuja that’s pictured on the national currency.
- Continent: Western Africa
- Climate: Hot—averaging around 90 degrees in much of the nation. Nigeria has two seasons, the rainy season and the dry season. Each lasts about half the year.
- The school year in Nigeria runs from January through December. Typically, there are three semesters, with a month off following each one.
- Most schools have strict dress codes. There are not only required uniforms but also rules about hairstyles, jewelry and accessories.
- A board game called ayo, played by two people using seeds and a board that has twelve cups, is widespread. So are checkers and hand-clapping games.
- Soccer is a national craze in Nigeria, as in much of Africa. Volleyball, wrestling and boxing are also popular.
- Age earns respect in many families. As a mark of honor, an older sibling may be addressed as “Senior Brother” or “Senior Sister” instead of their name.
- Traditionally, most Nigerians lived in extended families, either within the same home or in separate homes clustered close together.
- Spicy pepper soup, made with onions, hot chili peppers and meat or fish
- Plantains (a member of the banana family), which can be fried, stewed with meat, toasted or made into pastries
- The rare Sclater's guenon, a small (6–9 pound), wiry gray monkey that dwells in swamps and moist forests
- The West African manatee, a thousand-pound water mammal with small flippers and a mouth full of molars
- Unique holiday: October 1 brings the biggest festival in Nigeria—Independence Day, which celebrates Nigeria's independence from Great Britain in 1960. The day begins with a presidential address and includes parades and festivities in all 36 Nigerian states.
- Did you know? Nigeria is Africa's most populous country, accounting for about one-fifth of the continent's people. It is very diverse, with more than 250 ethnic groups; the largest are the Yoruba, the Hausa and Fulani and the Ibo (Igbo).
Clancy's comment: With more than 173 million people in Nigeria, I think most kids would struggle to have a decent education.