Standard Reports in Sierra Leone: What Role for Librarians?


Stories are as old as language, as previous as the earliest societies. A few of the earliest stories even survive: individuals informed in pictorial type on partitions of cave in Lascaux, in France or in the Mpongweni Mountains in Lesotho. And other folks have come down to us in the world’s myths and folklore to which we now have obtain on the printed age. Storytelling is older than printing, older than creating, and the very first tales to be established down on paper, papyrus or parchment had been not the operate of individuals authors but information of the oral traditions of earlier hundreds of years. In Sierra Leone as it is in most African countries storytelling is an integral portion of the country’s daily life even though oral traditions have very mainly yielded to the prepared word.

We find out as we stay although we are youngsters, youthful people and adults. Understanding is not confined to the classroom by itself: it can take place anywhere. Moral values and social norms, beliefs and codes have to be transmitted from technology to the subsequent, no matter whether modified or not. Casual learning options are relevant and may well be dominant even these days when a lot more formalized and certain establishments have partly taken over.

Even though Sierra Leoneans guard them selves towards their earlier equally educationists and librarians see a great deal in storytelling that could be utilised as foundation to orient and create the youthful in the school technique. There are many indications that an immense richness of standard pedagogy in respect to the concepts, contents, methods and institutional preparations existed and even now exist in Sierra Leone. Story tellers, their stories and songs, proverbs and riddles are even now critical property and topics for indigenous understanding and schooling. Oral traditions do not only pass the mores and specifications of a modern society. They established out to clarify the planet and conduct of the individuals in it. Oral traditions offer you accounts of how the globe began and these generation myths are element also of the Holy Books of all the world’s extended-recognized religions such as Christianity and Islam. Also defined in allegorical terms is all human behaviour in which good does not often triumph in excess of evil.

Tales which do not count on literature in switch do not depend on literacy. They can reach all of the neighborhood and their interactive high quality is itself electrical power, for it facilitates the capabilities of stories in social instruction, what Leeson (1985) named “passing on the country’s shared wisdom and values to the up coming generation.” Regrettably there is a missing hyperlink in Sierra Leone as school heading children are well acquainted with the tales of Wonderful Britain, the United States of America, Canada and Italy to cite a couple of illustrations but know quite tiny about their traditional tales.


Sierra Leone comprises sixteen (sixteen) ethnic groups. The premier of these is the Mende discovered in the Southern and Jap Provinces. Subsequent to them in number is the Temne in the North. The 3rd premier group is the Limba, also in the Northern Province, adopted by the Kono in the Jap Province. There is also the Koranko in the North as well as the Yalunka, Loko, Soso, Madingo and Fula. On the coast, North and South are the Bullom and Sherbro adopted by the considerably scaled-down groups of Krim, Vai and Gola, with the Kissi more inland in the Japanese Province. The Western Spot, like Freetown, is far more blended in population, but is essentially the home of the Creole group. In all these ethnic teams storytelling is widespread as portion of their culture.

Ogutu and Roscoe (1974) experienced this to say about storytelling in Africa: “The continent has its own fiction traditions it has the tradition of storytelling, narrated orally… the medium through which Africa down the generations has bared its soul, taught its individuals and entertained by itself” (pp. 43-forty four).

Conventional tales in Sierra Leone are perceived as embodiment of the beliefs, customs, rituals and buildings of culture that require to be managed. Tales function inside modern society to insure conformity to the approved cultural norms of continuity from generation to generation by means of their part in education and learning and the extent to which they mirror culture. Most traditional storytellers assert to derive their art by way of goals, spirits, and apprenticeship to skilled storytellers other individuals declare to acquire the art immediately from God even though some say they paid to get it. Storytellers have the following features:

• Fluency in the regional language and mastery of a vast variety of vocabulary for all stages of audiences
• Creative imagination and capacity to build rapport with their audiences
• Knowledge of their audiences and their needs
• Familiarity with and potential to refer to their culture and environment to enliven their tales and make them attraction to their audience
• Excellent memory of exact retention and narration of a huge corpus of material and
• Candour.

The contents of classic tales can be grouped into:

• Myths-stories tinted with faith, superstition and classic beliefs specially about the origins of mankind and phenomena
• Legends-tales about historic events and memorable people such as war heroes, exceptional drugs guys and migration
• Fiction-imaginary tales categorized into allegory, fables, fantasy and parables.

These can be even more labeled by social purpose or institution specifically:

• Political tales-stories about management and the partnership between leaders and their topics
• Tribe stories-these expose the constructions, families and communities i.e. relationship and genealogies
• Faith and deities-tales about development and phenomena such as dying and rain
• Moral virtues-tales meant to deride this sort of vices as satisfaction, greed, thievery, murder, dishonesty, foolishness and deficiency of insight
• Economics-tales that deal with work, borrowing and lending, industriousness and laziness.

People in typical conventional Sierra Leonean tales variety from men and women to animals, stones, trees, plants, deities, spirits and birds. These characters are symbolic: Bra rabbit- trickery tortoise-wisdom elephant-nobility vulture-patience lion-bravery and strength sparrow, parrot and crow-intelligence dove-excellent fortune spider-cunning. Tales are told purely for evening entertainments. At times storytelling classes could be any time of the working day with audiences in private verandahs, ‘court barries’ or other community places. Even so, قصص اسلامية placing exactly where 20 to forty individuals sit jointly close to a kerosene lamp or fireplace at night right after a day’s work is completed and foods has been cooked and eaten. Storytellers are also invited to cultural social functions these kinds of as weddings, burials, magic formula modern society celebrations and crowning ceremonies. Tobacco is typically supplied for without having cigarette smoking storytelling suggestions will not flow.

Tales go together with songs a track commences off a story an essential line in a story makes up a new tale a proverb ends a tale a track in the center of a tale is utilised to wake up listeners or to get ready for the coming climax. Very often music do invite participation, and listeners turn into active supporters of a chorus, clapping their hands, achieving to lies and jokes of the tale teller, who in flip responses the feedback typically with one more story. Tunes are backed by the beating of standard musical devices like ‘kaylain’, ‘sira’ ‘seigureh’ and ‘sangba’ (regional drum) to insert rhythm. Tale telling audience is usually lively. It catalyses the narratives by spontaneous exclamations, concerns to the narrator, echoing of the narrator’s voice, and joining in the singing of choruses. For all these to just take location willpower is preserved. The viewers is created to laugh and exclaim but with out jeopardizing the continuation of the narration.

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