Working to strengthen the natural partnerships between schools and communities, close to 3 000 parents, caregivers, and representatives from community organisations such as churches and libraries attended special community trainings at the rural schools that form part of Nal’ibali’s Story Powered Schools network this May.
“It takes a village to raise a child,” says Story Powered Schools programme manager, Michael Cekiso, explaining the valuable role that parents and other adults can play in the upbringing and literacy learning of all our children.
Children are learning all the time: in the home and in the community. Learning doesn’t only happen at school. Children are learning whether they are playing, listening to a story or simply observing the adults around them going about their daily lives. This type of informal learning is powerful because it means that all adults, no matter their experience or education level, can act as role models and teachers for their children, simply by telling or sharing a story with them in their mother tongue.
Invited to revisit their childhood memories, participants were encouraegd to recall and share the songs, games and stories they enjoyed as children and what it felt like to be young and having these experiences.
Building on these happy memories, the training emphasised the benefits of using home languages or more than one language; how participants can support the work of schools by setting up and running reading clubs of their own or by volunteering at those run by the schools.