Considered a cornerstone of basic education, reading is a key skill that learners should have mastered by grade 2 and 3. When they reach grade 4, the focus moves from reading to recognise to reading to understand, and learners should be able to read and analyse texts independently when they are about 10 years old.
Of course, reading doesn’t come easily to all children, and remedial programmes are very often incorporated in order to foster reading skills where they are lacking.
Sparrow Foundation School is lucky to be able to utilise the services of The Link’s Literacy Project. This non-profit organisation is focused on developing literacy and numeracy in children for whom English is a second language, who are attending low-income schools in Johannesburg. Founded by educator Margi Bashall in 2010, and inspired by The Shine Centre, which runs a similar literacy programme in Australia, volunteers are the key driving force behind The Link Literacy Project.
Each week, more than 600 trained and committed volunteers work with children in grade 2 and 3 in 19 Link Centres operating at schools in and around Johannesburg, reaching more than 1,100 children.
The Link has permission to operate during school hours and is recognised by the Gauteng Educational Authorities, and learners who are at risk of not reaching their full potential and who may benefit from The Link Literacy Project are identified by means of valid testing.
The Link Literacy Project is in dire need of volunteers to continue the important work they are doing for children whose parents or guardians do not have the means to enrol them in formal after-school remedial programmes. To volunteer for The Link, people need no prior training or teaching experience (basic training and all resources are provided), but do need to be fluent in English, as this is the second and perhaps even third language of the learners they will be assisting.
To get involved and become a volunteer of The Link Literacy Project, simply click here.