"The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind" Quarter 3 Book project by Taylor Lee

"The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind" is an autobiography by William Kamkwamba. William's story tells of his life-changing accomplishment of building a windmill to produce reliable energy. He battled many obstacles to bring his dream to life including surviving famine, criticism, and dropping out of school.
William lived in Malawi, a small southeastern country in Africa. He lived in a village called Masitala, near the center of Malawi. The Kamkwamba family were farmers who grew maize. They also spoke Chichewa.
Willam lived with his father, mother, and six sisters. His closets friends were the chiefs son, Gilbert, along with his cousin Geoffrey. Near the beginning of his story, he also makes friends with a dog named Khamba.
At the beginning of the book, William's family did not have electricity in their house. Electricity in Malawi was powered by ESCOM. ESCOM stands for Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi. William's family could not afford the costs of electricity. Even if they could, the power plant had many power outages and was unreliable.
William began to take an interest in science when he was 13. He was interested in how things like lights, car, and radios worked. He began to ask questions. He also began taking apart radios to see how they worked. Geoffrey and William started fixing radios for people in the village as well.
William went to Wimbe Primary during this time. To move on to secondary school he had to pass a hard exam. He was bent on getting a good school to learn more about science. Instead, William got one of the worst choices for a school. A school called Kachokolo. The conditions were horrible and secondary school was expensive.
Soon after the exam was over, in 2000 a famine struck Malawi. William's family didn't have enough food to last til harvest. People began to starve and die and the Kamkwamba family rationed out remaining food. The famine led to many deaths across Malawi including William's old friend, Khamba.
Due to the famine, William's family ran out of money to keep him in school. He had to drop out. Meanwhile, food started to grow again as cholera broke out in the village. Miraculously, Willam and his family survived.
Even after the famine, Willam could not return to school until his family could harvest and make more money. So to catch up on his schoolwork, William visited the library. He studied hard and learned more from Gilbert, who was still able to continue with school.
It was in the library that William learned about science. He found many books but the one that inspired him the most was one titled "Using Energy". This book explained how he could turn wind into electricity using a windmill. William was fascinated and decided he would make his own windmill.
William briefly went back to school. Unfortunately, he had to drop out again due to lack of funds. William took this event and used the free time to work on his windmill.
Making a windmill called for a lot of parts, many were to expensive or were unavalible. So William rubbaged through the junkyard and improvised with many parts to create the windmill. He was taunted and told he was crazy, giving him and his family a bad reputation. Even through the criticism, William persisted.
William succeeded and finished his windmill. He brought electricity to his home. William also improved the windmill to make it safer and more powerful. Word spread of his deed and soon a newspaper printed his story. The story was passed along to workers of TED. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, and Design. William was invited to a TED conference where he shared about the dream that he accomplished.
After the conference, William's story was spread even farther. He moved to Lilongwe where he went back to school even though he was much older. He also went to see windmills in California in 2007. He made his dream come true and changed his family's life and his village.
I greatly enjoyed "The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind". It was a imformative and inspiring autobiograph. The book explains many of the terms and steps to help readers understand the scientific processes. I usually don't read technological or scientific type books. However I love autobiographies. So I learned a lot from reading a book that was an autobiography and was able to read about a topic I didn't know much about.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in science, looking for an inspiring story, or wants a quick and interesting read. Even if someone is uninterested in science, they will find themselves wanting to know how William succeeded and will see their world differently. I am glad I read this book and hope others will do the same.
Thank you for reading this presentation.


Created with images by 4Neus - "african sky HDR" • Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the BPL - "Africa, including the Mediterranean" • Amandad - "elephant tusk ivory" • Lady-Ro - "Blue Bokeh" • Couleur - "light bulb pear light" • ToolManTimTaylor - "pencil" • adactio - "Corn" • Spree2010 - "personal journals" • Vivanista1 - "library" • dimitrisvetsikas1969 - "windmill sun sunlight" • a2gemma - "Pencil" • Fernando_Villadangos - "windmill park-science-granada wind" • skeeze - "globular cluster stars messier 92" • cocoparisienne - "blossom bloom macro" • damesophie - "clover plant green" • Unsplash - "wind farm energy green" • Pexels - "agriculture beautiful clouds"

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