Playing Oware on Break. Bolgatanga N/R Ghana

Sunday, June 20, 2010


June 20, 2010


As the founder and chief of MACPRI – ASO Services International, an educational art enterprise, it gives me great pleasure to introduce our product to you. Please see attachment for our teaching resource package.
MACPRI is presently working on contracts with carvers in Ghana, West Africa that can see us becoming the main distributor of this product in the country. We presently have a modest 2300 units left in stock. While we have omitted the optional extra hole at each end of the board, this basic board is cost effective and adoptable for playing numerous pit and pebbles games including Mancala. Our retail outlets sell the board (playing pieces included) for $35.00 each plus tax. MACPRI’s direct purchase retail price is $25.00 each plus GST. Special rates are available for quantity orders while supply last. The MACPRI team also conducts demonstrations at affordable rates for schools and community organizations based on the number of games purchased per order.
Oware as you may have learned from our marketing representative is not just a game; it is an educational tool, hand made art and a living history artifact.

A Brief Description of the Oware Math Tool
Oware and approximately 300 other "pit and pebbles" board games incorporate agriculture principles, a math base (counting and strategy) and technology (ancient board used in accounting - debts and credits.) into its playing rules. Online you can find a vast storehouse of cultural and historical information about this under publicized original African concept. As an advocate of Africa in an inclusive classroom, MACPRI continues to seek all opportunities to expand the knowledge and use of one of Africa's gems - the "pit and pebbles" class of game which has been played in Africa for thousands of years. The "pit and pebbles" class of games of which Oware (Ghana), Mancala (Egypt), Ware (Antigua), Caye (Haiti), Awale (Togo) and Ayo (Nigeria) belong has been proven by James Masters and other scholars to be ‘the world's oldest board game’. It is therefore the prototype of such games as chess and checkers. It also makes sense that the most complicated, most sophisticated and most strategic versions of the game come from East and East-Central Africa: Uganda (Omweso), Ethiopia/Eritrea (Gabeta), Tanzania (Bao) and so on. While some 'experts' trace the game's origin to Egypt and refer to it and all other ‘pit and pebbles’ games with the Arab word "Mancala" meaning to count, we are yet to uncover the Ancient Egyptian epistemology of Mancala. Needless to say the ancient game played today all over the world and in such countries as: Germany, France, England, Haiti, The Philippines and India has its origin in Africa

The game has been incorporated into school curriculum in Antigua, Australia, Great Britain, France and Sweden based on the reports from England’s Oware Society. The game as a math tool is applicable at all grade levels: at the primary level as a basic counting device; at the primary/junior level to develop the skills required in the mathematics process; at the junior/intermediate/senior level the games can be applied in developing thinking skills and strategic planning. In extra curricula activities and newcomer educational development the game board is an excellent tool as well.
This teaching tool has already been adopted in some TDSB/TCDSB schools and is used in community organizations across the GTA. Most GTA students who know the game have been introduced to the Mancala (Egyptian) version of the game.

While MACPRI presently teaches three different games (Oware-Abapa, Rounders/Namnam and Mancala) in our demonstrations we are particular about Oware-Abapa because it is very popular globally; it is used for international competition and is much more strategic than Mancala.

MACPRI presently teaches the game to anyone interested in preparation for our First International Oware Tournament to be held in Toronto in the Summer/Fall of 2011. Schools interested in ordering our product, booking a demonstration or receiving additional information can call Andrew Martin, Deputy Chief of MACPRI at 416-230-8301 or email macpri@gmail.com. All emails should be cc to deputyofmacpri@gmail.com.

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