According to the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) of 2016, almost 80% of South African Grade 4 learners do not understand what they read. One cause of this is that many teachers are overwhelmed by large classes, and another is that schools lack resources. As a parent, you can help by preparing your pre-school child for reading. One way of helping your child is by developing their spoken vocabulary and emergent literacy skills.
This can be done by encouraging your child to speak and tell their own stories, to ask questions. Read and speak to your child and make them aware that words make up sounds. Ensure your child makes the connection between letters and the sounds using songs nursery rhymes, reading aloud and playing simple word games. You can also use Oxford’s Reading Tree: Floppy’s Phonics Sound and Letters Programme.
Once your child can read words, it’s an easy step to reading sentences. The pre-reading skills you have managed to instil in your child before they start school will help smooth their path to becoming independent, confident and fluent readers – leading to better academic performance.
Many teachers in South Africa have been faced with an unexpected and abrupt transition to virtual teaching during COVID-19. To support you, Oxford University Press and their partners at Epigeum have made two of their online training programmes, Teaching Online and Blended Learning, freely available until 31 May 2020. Find out more and sign up here.
Oxford University Press South Africa has just partnered with Writing Legends, a new digital program that revolutionises the teaching and learning of writing in Grades 3 to 7. By blending the best of technology with captivating writing prompts and modelling, the program dramatically improves teaching and learning by inspiring learners to participate within a motivated community of passionate writers.
As part of their assistance to schools, Oxford is providing the program completely free of charge through to 31 July 2020.
Learners and teachers have access, from wherever they are, to hundreds of writing activities supported by exemplars, writing checklists and vocabulary assistance. Teachers may set specific activities for individual learners, groups of learners or the whole class, and are also able to see how long learners spend on activities and then provide individual feedback.
To sign up your class for the free access period, click HERE.