Category Archives: Uncategorized

Assistant teacher with a secret talent

Many people struggle to get into a university because of their low admission Point Score (APS) that result from their matric results, therefore when such happens they either repeat matric or upgrade their marks at institutions that offer those study options. This was also the case for Tenielle Johnson, the 22 year old young lady didn’t give up on her dream all because of university APS score marks, and she took courage and decided to upgrade her mathematics and science marks after matric so that she can study further. Her aunt referred her to the school as she was an employee of Sparrow Schools.

Before enrolling at Sparrow FET College, she was planning on studying a teaching course after upgrading her marks. She enrolled for the Early Childhood Development programme at Sparrow FET College as she has a passion for teaching. Her biggest challenge while at the college was to achieve more than 80% on all assessments. Even though it was challenging, she worked hard and was determined to pass the course. According to Miss Johnson, 2016 was the best year for her as she met a lot of people that she is still friends with today. Her facilitator, Miss Tessa  who has extensive knowledge in Early Childhood Development, taught her alot. She is currently on her workplace experience as an assistant teacher at The Foundation school where she is getting hands on experience of teaching foundation phase children. Working with children requires patience, versatility, problem solving skills, being able to multitask but most importantly having the passion to teach. The Early Childhood Development programme is a 12 months course, where learners are based at the college for 6 months and 6 more months at a workplace to gain practical working experience.

Tenielle is planning on studying either a psychology course or a teaching course and this is because of the exposure she has received in dealing with children that have special needs and her passion for teaching children. The ever so bubbly and happy assistant teacher says that if she is given the opportunity to be a permanent teacher at the Sparrow Foundation School she would like to be an art teacher because she can draw very well and that is her secrete talent that she has been hiding from colleagues and some of her friends. As a young person after living in your parents’ house for a while, when you have a stable career you need to move out and start your own life so that you can be independent and learn to be responsible so that you can also have your family depending on you.

If you love children and have a passion for teaching, contact the Sparrow FET College and book your assessment now! 0116734419/10

We also have other great courses that you can choose from. 

Sometimes all our children need is a splash of colour: how colour aids learning for children of all ages

According to a whitepaper published by the Malaysian Journal of Medical History, colour is believed to be the most visual experience to human beings.  And we agree.

Colour is critical for young children, and as they grow through each life stage, and pass through the schooling system, so they need to be taught to adjust how they make use of colour, to study and succeed.

We find that in the foundation phase (grades one through three), the younger learners have a predisposition to warm colours, and thrive in a warm environment.  The reds, yellows and oranges that make up the warm palette, showcase more energy, and are dynamic for the eyes.  They convey energy and movement, which is a reflection of the learners.  Children in the foundation phase, are generally used for an audience that is curious and inquisitive.

Intermediate and senior phase learners, that are made up of grade four and above, are are actually looking at cooler, more neutrally aligned colours like blues, greens.  We find that this helps with learning because they are calmer, more relaxed colours.  These colours also aren’t as distracting as the warm colours – and puts them in a good place especially for concrete learning and longer periods of focus.

Where many people go wrong, is that in their enthusiasm to introduce colour is an all or nothing approach.  It is not about splashing the colour everywhere, but finding balance and subtlety.  We encourage parents and teacher to either identify one wall that could be (for example) fire engine red, or opt for a more muted shade or tone of red, that puts the colour in the vicinity, without compromising its intention – to facilitate learning.

Consider choosing different shades of a particular colour, rather than opting for lots of different colours.  Too much colour can lead to children being over stimulated, especially in a special needs school or environment.  This can be quite distracting for the learners.

When it comes to studying, we have a couple of tips for using colour:

  1. General work day – direct learners´ attention to an object or topic – if there is an important information cue, or critical information in a picture, show this either as bolded content, or better yet, use a different colour.  
  2. Sometimes, when there are similar words close to one another, or a lot of different information on a page, we suggest breaking it up into different colours to help learners see this in a contextual block.  It improves readability for learners and assists with information retention..
  3. Especially in mathematics, colour provides useful symbol and function differentiation.  For learners that have visual perception or mathematical learning challenges, the numbers and symbols can sometimes blur together.  We encourage learners to write numbers in blue pen, and allocate a colour to each symbol (or function) so plus and minus signs in a bold colour like red or green.  It stands out – and there are fewer mistakes in the calculations.
  4. Because we are dealing with a 21st century, technology driven learner, we find that colour worksheets help in terms of alleviating boredom.  Learners have become accustomed to colourful, image driven content – blogs, youtube videos and image driven tools that are dynamic.  So their brains are stimulated by this type of dynamic content and PowerPoint presentations, delivered using colour projectors, have become a useful teaching aide
  5. Emotional expression is critical, especially in the younger grades, when children don’t always have have the vocabulary to express their feelings.  Using colour in their workbooks on in drawings, allows them to get that emotion out, but make sure you are clear on the context of what they are feeling.

There is no right age to introduce colour, but we would always suggest this happening as early as possible.  More important than introducing colour, is ensuring that as your child grows and progresses through their schooling career, so too does his/ her exposure to colour both as a visual and learning tool. But be specific – don’t just give learners a bag of crayons or coloured pencils and sit back and get a rainbow from them.

Provide your child with guidelines, on how best to integrate colour into their learning processes.  For example, pre-determine what colours you would like to be used to show the symbols (functions) in Maths.  When they are learning study skills, attribute a specific colour to certain content – for example, everything related to plants could be in green, keywords related to photosynthesis yellow.  

Assign a purpose to the use of colour, and specific colours for learning.

But also consider context and don’t automatically decide on the emotional connection of a colour, without asking a child first.  We had a child in class in the foundation phase, who was drawing houses, and friends and siblings beautifully, but all the images were dark – lots of use of black and brown crayons.  Parents and teachers were all called together, and a concern was expressed that this child was very depressed.  When the child was called in to ask about the drawings, he explained that he sat at the back of the class, so by the time the crayons got to him, the only colours left were the browns and blacks.  

While it is amusing to recall this example, it is a good reminder to also put colour use into context, ask the child and check that assumptions aren’t being made about their emotional state.

Because we believe in inclusivity and celebrating diversity, Sparrow Schools support the Color Run, and will be participating at the superhero color run in September in Johannesburg, after all, everyone covered in coloured powder looks the same!  If you’d like to feel  how happy colour can make you feel, and celebrate inclusivity, please join the Sparrow Schools team (click for more info) for the Color Run on 10 September 2017

Warren Thompson, Learning Support manager at Sparrow Schools. 

To sign up, email your details through to us: sparrow@mweb.co.za 

From missing netball goals to sports coaching

Failure opens up room for improvement, motivation and gaining more knowledge. Zanele Nkabinde has always been a fan of netball but she kept missing the goal pole every time when she was practicing and also playing a match at school. Most people usually give up when they fail but this wasn’t the case for the 26 year old lady who loves teaching and netball. Her love for netball pushed her to teaching because she knew that even though she couldn’t play netball she will learn the rules of the game to teach children who are more passionate and talented.

Before enrolling at Sparrow FET College, Zanele was a sports coach at Hector Peterson Primary school for 2 years and was introduced to the college by her friend who heard of the college through word of mouth in the community. She then enrolled for Sports Coaching at the FET College and is currently doing her workplace experience at the Sparrow Foundation School. As she was only a netball sport coach at the Hector Peterson primary school, she is learning more about other types of sports and exercising activities at the Foundation School. This has helped to increase her knowledge of sports and physical fitness.

While at the college she was pregnant and it was difficult for her to perform most of the practical’s but that didn’t stop her from being positive and working hard to complete her studies. Liam, who was her facilitator at the college guided and supported her. Sports coaching is a broad career with a lot of opportunities that require dedication, versatility, commitment and persistence.

Zanele will be enrolling for a sports management course next year at a distant learning college to fulfill her dream and goals.  Before she enrolled at the College, she didn’t socialize with people as much but as soon as she started networking and socializing she was then told about the FET College. Zanele says that as a young person, if you are unemployed or you need any kind of assistance you don’t need to be shy as opportunities come to you when you start talking about your issue and socialize more with people. Miss Nkabinde is a living proof that opportunities can be acquired from word of mouth in the communities.

When you are advised about available opportunities , always make sure that you do your own research about of those opportunity as there is a high rate of job scams including bursaries scams in South Africa due to lack of funds and availability of jobs. To find out more about opportunities offered at the FET college contact us on 0116734410, let us help you to achieve your dream.

Supplier and Enterprise Development in a nutshell

The amended BBBEE codes of good practice reveal that more points can be earned through enterprise development and supplier development. Companies can score 40 points on the BBBEE scorecard for enterprise and supplier development and 30 points on qualifying small enterprise (QSE). The sub sections of ESD are preferential procurement, supplier development and enterprise development which makes it easier for points to be scored as businesses can choose which element of the subsection they think would best benefit their company taking into consideration the available resources.

Preferential procurement measures how a company purchases goods from suppliers who are BEE compliant as it is a system where government tenders are awarded based on a selection system that gives preference to disadvantaged individuals. While supplier development assists in growing suppliers from your database, enterprise development assists businesses that are not on a database of a business.

Enterprise and supplier development is about growing existing businesses, new and small businesses with more than 51% black owners and a turnover that is less than 50 million per year. In order to earn points for SD you need to spend 2% of your net profit after tax per annum on supplier development and 1% of your net profit after tax on enterprise development. You can earn your ESD points by supplying goods to the Sparrow Schools including printing service, computers for the IT class, stationery and other relevant resources.

Source from SEESA, BEESA, SA-tenders

Aspiring mechanical engineer Simphiwe Thulani Khulu is on the move

Audi RS3 is my favorite car smiles the humble introvert Simphiwe Khulu. He is a grade 6 learner at Sparrow Foundation School who came into the school in grade 3 from Louders primary school in Soweto. Simphiwe is very shy but has big dreams for his future. He believes that respecting everyone around him will help him achieve his dreams. When he came into the school he required remedial assistance in English and Mathematics. Remedial programs are designed to help give students the individual attention that they need to build their skills and confidence so that they can live up to their potential.

With the help from his teachers including his class teacher miss Moyo, he has started excelling in those subjects because he is determined to do well in his studies and regularly asks questions to help him understand the activities in class. His determination and respect led to him being appointed as a school RCL last year and performed his duties with excellence.

The occasional soccer player who plays as a defender enjoys this sport as it keeps him busy and fit while also assisting him with communication skills as this is a team effort sport. With mathematics and natural science as his favorite subjects Khulu is working hard towards being a mechanical engineer for brands like BMW, Mercedes Benz and his number one favorite being Audi. He aims to achieve this by working hard at school, paying equal respect to everyone, staying positive and motivated at all times. Having experienced challenges in his life at a young age, he has been able to pull through and focus on the end goal and also would like to give back to communities when he has reached his ultimate goal.

Children who need remedial assistance can be identified by the inability to apply basic mathematics or reading basic words, children who have behavior issues and children who have learning disabilities in all subjects.

If your child requires remedial education and support contact the Foundation School on 011 482 3520

Female hose assembler striving for success in a male dominated industry

Most people find it difficult to adapt to change but it was a different story for Rendani Vele, a 26 year old lady who had to leave her comfortable home town full of avocados and all kinds of fruits in Venda including the traditional Venda lifestyle of her village. She had to relocate to the busy city of gold and swapping lifestyles or cities meant that she had to drop out of a mechanical engineering course as she couldn’t afford the course fees in Johannesburg. She had to opt for a much cheaper option yet highly demanded course as her family was not financially stable to pay the course fees. Her cousin who had enrolled as an early childhood development student at the Sparrow Schools FET College advised her to contact the school as it is much cheaper and she can choose from the course options available at the FET College.

She initially wanted to enroll for the early childhood development course but the course was already full when she contacted the college. Rendani then opted for the motor mechanic course and unfortunately she did not qualify for that course. Having received all the feedback from the college she did not give up and enrolled for the hose assembling course in which she was the only female in the class. It is a 6 months course consisting of 3 months at the college and 3 months at a workplace for experience. Even though funds to pay for fees were not available, her father made sure that she had money to pay for her assessment and registration fee as the rest was paid for by the college. Being the only female in class made her the little sister to all boys in her class; she enjoyed playing soccer with her classmates and speaks highly of Mr. Parker who was her favorite teacher.

The idea of being a hose assembler wasn’t fascinating to for her at first but now that she has leant a lot about the course, she is excited about the industry and would like to have her own hose assembling business in the near future. Rendani is currently doing her workplace experience at Alfagoma as a hose assembler and she has been there for more than a month. As Sparrow Schools FET has provided her with education and a workplace experience, she believes that it is up to her to learn as much as she can and grow not only in the industry but also in the company. The hose assembling industry is a male dominated industry and Rendani is working hard to be successful in the industry.

To apply, please email admissions@sparrowschhools.co.za or call us to book your assessment 011 673 4410/4419.

Understanding the implications of fronting

Companies are very desperate to get tenders that they even take an illegal route just to receive BEE accreditation. When a company deliberately provides the wrong information related to BEE compliance this is called fronting and it has serious implication on the company and the business owners or directors. BEE accreditation for a company leads to more business deals and the company can also apply or receive government tenders or other sector’s projects in which they will obtain more profit to sustain their business and apply for countless tenders. Fronting has many consequences on the business and its image.

There are three types of fronting practices, opportunistic intermediaries, benefit diversion and window dressing where a company lists their black employees as shareholders to be more BEE compliant as they will earn more points on the BEE scorecard. According to the amended code of good practice fronting is a criminal offence. Companies or anyone found guilty of this act will be fined and the penalty fee will be 10% of the annual turnover and imprisonment up to 10 years for the company owners. They will also be excluded from any government deals or tenders for 10 years. For those companies that reply on government tenders to operate they will have to liquidate or close the company. To report any incidents of fronting contact the Department of Trade & Industry http://www.dti.gov.za/contacts.jsp

There is always a solution to B-BBEE! Call Sparrow FET College today – 011 673 4410/4419 to make your BEE pain go away.

Sourced from www.cenfed.co.za

Building a generation that is fully equipped to take the bait

As the rate of unemployed graduates increases every year, skill development programmes help to reduce the rate by offering students with specific skills training that are highly demanded in the job market. The programmes also inspire an entrepreneurial mindset which will have a positive impact on the country’s economy and communities when the students open their own businesses. To help companies increase their BEE score card, they can invest in different kinds of skills development training including internships, school bursaries and learnerships. When investing in a skills development programme a company will be credited with 25 points on the BEE score card. With the #feesmustfall movement creating a disruption in tertiary institutions, companies need to spend money on skills development programmes to have a good reputation on their employment equity profile.

The Labour Relations Act 66 of 1995, states that no one should be discriminated in the workplace or while looking for a job according to their race, gender or social background. At Sparrow FET College we provide you with a solution that benefits your scorecard and your company image, which will result in repeated business. Sparrow FET College provides 12 months learnerships and 6 months skills development programmes. A company can either fund a student to study, pay for their school bursary or employ a student to gain workplace experience and grow within the company. Join Sparrow Schools FET in reducing the unemployment rate while increasing your BEE score card. #EducateAchild

Sourced from Cores and Econobee

Diyoko continues to rise…

Diyoko’s story has been featured on our blog before. One of our proudest success stories, Diyoko overcame a terrible accident that left him partially disabled and after training at Sparrow in Business Administration was employed in the Admissions office. From when he first had his accident Diyoko has been working with Evey and Gail Jones from the Department of Speech Therapy and Audiology at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital. As Evey put it, Diyoko’s speech disorder was a structural one, which meant it was caused by the reshaping of his physical face and mouth rather than any cognitive reasons. This frustrated Diyoko as he tried to communicate with his office mates Adelaide and Montshadi, as they could not always understand him.

Fortunately, technology has been growing in the field of alternative communication and Diyoko was identified as a prime candidate to receive an augmentative communication device from the hospital which would help him to communicate through his computer. The device is made up of an adapted mouse and joystick that reads into a computer programme. Diyoko will be able to preprogram common words and sentences and select the appropriate one when he wants to communicate with anyone in his office. His office mates will also be able to suggest any phrases they feel he may need to use to communicate with them or for them.

The programme has been a godsend to Diyoko and his team, and it gives him even greater independence and allows him to be more productive than before. Whilst the setting up process is still underway as Diyoko and his office mates all need to be trained in the software, everyone is excited about what it will mean in terms of Diyoko’s professional life.

“He will be able to participate even more at work,” Evey explains. “Dioko will be able to prepare for future meetings by pre-programming whatever information he wishes to present and bring forward. Every now and then, we will be checking up on him to make sure he is transitioning smoothly to augmentative communication, as we want this to be as uncomplicated and easy as possible for him. He will be able to do so much more, not only in his workplace but in his personal life as well.”

The simple act of communicating shouldn’t be something that hinders anyone in this age of technology, and thanks to the generous donation of Chris Hani Baragwanath, Diyoko has overcome another barrier and will achieve even more at Sparrow FET College.

Call us now to make your dreams a reality!   011 673 4410/4419

From welding student to achieving his dreams.

All his academic life, Pule Nkaenkae had been a great student. He sailed through the first eleven years of his schooling and when he got the chance to do a diploma he succeeded in graduating with several distinctions. All in all, Pule should have been on top of the world. But after graduating it all came to a standstill. He just couldn’t get a job. His diploma in Road Transport Management was good, but ultimately, the job market was just too saturated to find a place for him. Pule was never one to sit on his haunches however. He still had a small but steady job as a sales assistant that he had worked steadily at for six years since a year after matric, and though it wasn’t enough to achieve his goals, he worked hard at it whilst he looked for something better. At the end of 2013, he heard about Sparrow FET College from a youth development programme he attended. Sparrow was one of the recommended schools for youth in his position or even worse, and Pule immediately took the chance and signed up for the welding programme. He was not hesitant about going back to school all over again.

“I love learning,” he says with passion. “Learning the theory of welding was very simple for me as I enjoy studying greatly. From the word go, what I liked about Sparrow FET College was the fact that you could feel the personal vested interest in your education from the college. You had a relationship with them. I was not just a face at a university, I was Pule who was doing Welding and they knew every facet of my learning. If I struggled, they would immediately see and help me.”

At first Pule struggled at the college. In those days, the welding programme was new and there were no stipends for students so Pule struggled with transport money. But he grit his teeth and persevered. Attending Sparrow also opened Pule’s eyes to opportunities the youth today ignored. “Young people today, they all want to rush to university, but that is not where the jobs are.” He says ruefully. “They should research what is in demand.”

By July of 2014, Pule was doing his placement at New Heights Tank Design as a trainee. After he finished his training, the company took him in. Here began another rollercoaster. Pule had a great work ethic and all the managers were greatly impressed by him. He was snapped up into another department as soon as he was made a permanent employee, and got the opportunity to travel out of the country for large projects. And as of this year, when the company split and a new one was formed, Pule was the in demand employee everyone wanted to hire.

“I am a very motivated person, and with the training I got at Sparrow, I finally got a chance to apply and be rewarded for my motivation. What I always like to say is don’t start something you can’t finish. It is a waste of time and energy. It’s very difficult to overcome financial struggles, they interfere with everything, but as soon as you begin something you need to work to finish it. Be determined, be motivated, finish the task.”

Pule has plenty more tasks he is set to achieve, travel, furthering his new career and more. But with his determination and motivation, he is sure to achieve his dreams.

For more info: go to www.sparrowschools.co.za, call us on 011 673 4419 or email us on admissions@sparrowschools.co.za