A reflect and refresh session, followed by teacher certification was held in October with Ebenhaeser Prim, Nuwerus Prim, Lutzville Prim, St Boniface Prim, Matzi-Care, Uitkyk Prim, Koekenaap Prim and Vredendal-Noord Prim. We are always so inspired by the work done by this group of schools and by their commitment and passion. We are thankful for the opportunity to touch their lives, but more so to be touched by theirs.
Mr Claassen the Circuit Manager for Circuit 5 and Nonnie Cloete the Curriculum Advisor also attended this event. Mr Claassen spoke some encouraging and inspiring words and expressed gratitude to Wordworks for reaching out to their schools. Nonnie Cloete encouraged and thanked the teachers for their commitment to the children and their progress.
The cluster refresher included time for reflection and feedback. It is important for the facilitators to reflect on their programmes during the year and then give feedback to Wordworks. The feedback is very useful for future planning and going forward as well as the facilitators learning from each other.
We also focussed on important content areas such as story-telling and story reading as well as the use of the word dice and the use of the writing frame as tools for story writing. The graduation was a memorable part of the day’s events.
We are always so inspired by the work done by this group of schools and by their commitment and passion. It is heart-warming and very special. We are indeed thankful for the opportunity to touch their lives, but more so to be touched by theirs.
September is literacy month and a time to reflect on the fact that after 24 years of democracy, the great majority of our young children are not able to read, or understand what they read. … This is not government’s problem alone – it is every South African’s problem. It is the one thing that this country must get right. With millions of children in this country not learning to read and write successfully, what hope do we have of a better future?’
In our latest newsletter, read Shelley O’Carroll’s thought-provoking piece on the literacy crisis we face in South Africa. We also share some inspiring photos, news and tips from our Home-School Partnerships Programme – one way in which dedicated teachers and parents are facing up to this challenge.
Enjoy the read!
We were proud to share our learning about early literacy materials development in isiXhosa at the 2018 UWC Conference on Early Childhood Literacy Development. We also attended the launch of a book from last year’s conference: From Words to Ideas: The role of literacy in enhancing young children’s development.
Shelley O’Carroll and Isabella Hugow, together with Arnold Matzdorff, contributed a chapter to this book entitled ‘Assessment of Early Literacy development in under-resourced communities in South Africa’.
To order a copy of the book, email Prof Vuyokazi Nomlomo at UWC – email@example.com (R150 a copy).
There are so many women who have contributed to early literacy through our programmes with great dedication and passion! We are not able to introduce all of them, but we know that those who we have featured will inspire you.
Wordworks attended the AGM of one of our Lead Partners, the Langeberg ECD Forum in Montagu, on Thursday 16 August. The event was well attended, with 21 ECD centres from Robertson, Ashton, Bonnievale, McGregor and Montagu being represented. Also there were Augusta Brandt and Melissa Jacobs, National and Western Province chairpersons of the South African Congress of Early Childhood Development (SACECD).
Wordworks distance mentors, Cathy and Gaynor, were happy to have the opportunity to speak about the HSPP and the impact this programme can have on parents and families. This year, trained facilitators from 8 ECD centres in the Langeberg region, are running the programme with their parents.
We were privileged to be able to visit all these sites the day before the AGM and were encouraged by the wonderful work and commitment that we witnessed on our visit, despite many challenges faced by these communities.
It gave us special pleasure to be able to hand over a Wordworks gift pack of books, puzzles and games to each of the 21 centres attending the AGM.
The Inkwenkwezi Society aims to implement change through the use of preventative resources provided by national NGOs – such as Wordworks and Shine, to enhance the individual strengths of pupils as well as promote their mental well-being and resilience in schools around Grahamstown…at the end of a child’s programme, there is a notable difference in their self-esteem in that the students are more capable and confident in reading, writing and speaking in English. In addition, the programme has had a positive impact on each child’s sense of self-worth as they feel they have role to play in the classroom and want to be there.
180 teacher-facilitators and the Wordworks team met at 6 affirming and inspiring cluster sessions during July and August. The purpose was to reflect on their parent sessions as well as to refresh new and current activities to support their parents with informal learning in their homes.
The teachers reflected on the positive impact the HSP had on their parents. Many parents informed them that the support not only helped their children improve in the classroom, but also nurtured a closer bond between child and parent/s. Teachers also reported that they have developed a better relationship with the parents who attended and that these parents are now more hands-on with their children’s learning.
The teachers themselves find that they have benefited from the skills acquired through the programme and have implemented these in their own classrooms as well. Some have taken on new opportunities and responsibilities at their schools since being involved in the HSP Programme.
See our Facebook picture album here: Thank you all for your great participation in these sessions.
‘The ‘Ready Steady Read Write’ programme has been piloted at Kranshoek Primary to selected Grade R and Grade 1 learners during this year’s first two terms… (Bitou10 Foundation) expresses sincere gratitude to Wordworks for making a life-changing impact on the development of learners and teachers in Bitou.
“If you visited schools where tutors are using the Ready Steady Read Write programme to support young children learning to read and write, you would be struck by children contributing eagerly to conversations about books and a strong message to children that it’s important to try even if they can’t write perfectly. You would see how much fun reading and writing can be when it is taught through games, and you would notice children eager to begin their lessons, and leaving with a sense of confidence in themselves as readers and writers.”
Our July Newsletter brings you stories, tips and news about how to help make the journey into reading and writing a happy one that fills all involved with a great sense of accomplishment.
Enjoy the read!