Kenyan Traditions – Firstborn Child

Presented by

Josie Shaw



CultureALL Ambassador Josie Shaw was raised in a small Kenyan town of Kapsabet. In the Luhya culture of Western Kenya, when a couple has their first child, there is a special song that they sing to celebrate birth. As the firstborn child – whether it is a boy or girl – goes through life milestones, this special song is again sung to honor this child and the current celebration in his/her life.

In this workshop, Josie will perform the song (titled MWANA WA MBERI – First BornChild). A student is chosen to represent “the firstborn child” and is dressed in native garments – he/she is seated in a place of honor and then becomes the center of the traditional song and dance. The rest of the students are incorporated into the traditional ceremonial dance to honor the milestones of the “firstborn child”. Q and A time are always welcomed.

Workshop Details




Social Studies, Music Dance


25 max

Standard Length

45 min

Room Setup

Open space with room to dance

Supplies/Equipment Needed:

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