These people are in a tribe known as the Masai Tribe.
They live in Africa.
The Masai people live on the border of Kenya and
Tansania. Can you find these countries on the map?
They live in the Masai Mara. These are the African grasslands
where many of the wild animals of Africa live, such as giraffes,
lions and elephants. What other animals can you think of that
Masai people wear large earrings and stretch holes in their
ears. They see these large holes as beautiful.
They wear necklaces and headdresses with lots of beads on.
Men wear these necklaces and beads too.
They wear bright clothes. Their favourite colour is red. They
wear lots of tartan too. What do you think the colour red
might mean to them?
The Masai people are herders. They mainly herd cows and
goats. They depend on their cows for many things.
They drink cow's milk and blood as a sacred drink.
They use the cows' dung to cover and seal their
They don't slaughter their cattle for food; but if a
cow is killed, then the horns are used for
containers; the hides are used to make shoes,
clothing, ropes, and bed coverings; and the
hooves and bones are made into ornaments.
The more cows a man owns the richer he is thought
to be. He uses the cows to buy wives. A Masai
man can have more than 1 wife.
The Masai move their homes from time to time to follow their cattle.
They have to remake their homes each time they move.
The women make the homes. They are made of
sticks and grass. Mud and cow dung is used to
bind the materials together.
One family lives inside a home. A man can have
many wives so the families are sometimes
Small animals, like goats, live with
them in the huts; this keeps them
safe from predators and
warm during the cold nights.
This is a Masai village from above. They build fences with thorny branches
around their homes to keep the wild animals away. This keeps all of the
goats, cows and people safe from predators like lions.
They still have to watch out for
elephants though! An elephant could
stamp through their homes. Men
guard at night to make sure no
dangerous animals are near.
Masai men have different jobs from Masai women.
The men are in charge in a
Masai tribe. When the boys
are 14 years old they are
ready to become warriors.
The men go out onto the
Masai Mara to hunt animals
to feed their families.
When they were 14 years
old they used to go out
alone to hunt lions. This was
to show that they had
become men and were strong
and brave. Now they are
not allowed to do this
because lions are
endangered and need to be
Women take care of the children.
They build the mud huts and take care of the home.
They prepare the meals and
food and make clothing.
They also make necklaces,
dresses and headdresses
out of beads. Women and
children keep their heads
The Masai like to sing and dance.
The men do a jumping dance. They
jump as high as they can for as long
as they can. The man that can jump
the highest is seen as the strongest
and best warrior and so he will
sometimes become an Elder (a chief).
It also means that he will get to
choose the wife he wants.
Women sing and dance different
songs and dances. They sing for
their babies, their husbands and to
celebrate. They always sing and
dance amongst themselves and
separately from the men.
What do you think it would if you were in the Masai
Children in Masai tribes have
very different lives from
you. But they are the same
in lots of ways too.
Their parents care for
them and do all they can to
keep them safe.
They like to play together
and they love to be outside.
Unlike you, many Masai children
work. Mostly they herd the
goats and cattle.
When they are not herding they
help their Mothers carry water
and care for the homes.
Some Masai children don't go to
school because there isn't a
school close enough for them to
reach. They don't have cars or
bikes to help them get there
and the roads in the Masai Mara
are hard to travel on.
Things are getting better though. More and more schools
are being built for the Masai children. Now many of them
can go to school to learn, just like you do.
Do these schools look like
Are they learning the same