In an essential phase of schooling, Grade 4 marks a critical transition in our education system where learners shift from learning to read to reading to learn. Recognising this pivotal turning point, a programme dedicated to developing reading coaches has been making significant strides in enhancing literacy. This initiative, now in its second year, is funded by Bokamoso Solar in partnership with the READ Educational Trust and operates across schools in Kanana and Kgakala.

A recent certification ceremony honoured seven reading assistants who have been instrumental in this programme. Their training not only equips them with essential skills but also transforms the classrooms into vibrant learning environments. These reading coaches support Grade 4 learners, helping them improve their reading and literacy skills, which are fundamental building blocks in their academic development.

“Our classrooms have been revitalised thanks to the dedication of our reading assistants. Their efforts have led to enthusiastic engagement from our learners, turning the learning environment into a dynamic and interactive space. Moreover, this programme has eased the burden on teachers, making teaching more effective and productive,” said  Ms Cwaile, an educator.

The ceremony marked the completion of a comprehensive national masterclass programme by the reading assistants, where they successfully completed modules in Group Guided Reading, Reading Comprehension Strategies, Shared Writing, and Shared Reading. These SACE-accredited certificates represent their commitment to enhancing literacy and educational outcomes for learners.

The event brought together members of the School Governing Body (SGB), principals, parents, and officials from Waterloo and Bokamoso Solar. The attendees celebrated the achievements of the Reading Assistants and reflected on the importance of education.

“Investing in the education of our youth is a crucial step towards shaping the future of our country. Through this programme, we are dedicated to enhancing literacy and creating brighter opportunities for the young members of our communities,” said Claire Phutieagae, Community Liaison Officer for Bokamoso Solar, funders of the programme.

The event also featured performances by the Ditlhagile Cultural Group and the melodic tunes of Letshabo, celebrating the rich cultural heritage of South Africa’s youth. The day concluded with a lunch and a heartfelt thank you note from Veruschka Blume of READ, expressing gratitude for the hard work and commitment of all involved.

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