Past Workshops

Reading aloud to Children

 'Reading aloud to Children' workshop hosted by Lianne from LB Literacy in Randburg, Johannesburg.
‘Reading aloud to Children’ workshop hosted by Lianne from LB Literacy in Randburg, Johannesburg.

Workshop – 26 June, 2019 – Randburg, Johannesburg

Another worthwhile morning was spent with wonderful people interested in and passionate about raising literate children.

On the 26th June 2019, I was joined by several ECD teachers, a forensic social worker and a School Principal to find out why ‘reading aloud to young children’ is so important and how it forms the foundation for literacy, success at school and possibly success in life too.

Along with a few demonstrations I gave tips, tricks and advice on how to inspire a love of reading in young children. There were lots of ‘aha’ moments during our discussions and based on the feedback I believe the attendees left more knowledgeable and inspired to make changes.

Literacy and social media / digital era

I have had umpteen parents tell me over the last few years that reading and writing isn’t that important anymore. I usually ask these parents to consider the fact that due to social media and the digital era, we have way more text coming our way throughout the day, via multiple platforms in both our private and work lives.

Just some of the social media apps we interact with daily.
Just some of the social media apps we interact with daily.

We interact with these communication /publication platforms publicly and constantly – some of us are required to do so as part of our work obligations. We, therefore, need to be MORE literate than ever before because we have to be able to read, comprehend and process information fast and accurately. We also need to be able to respond meaningfully, quickly, professionally and often publicly, right there and then. The public aspect of these platforms, as well as the speed at which one is expected to communicate, means that we are under a lot more pressure to perform in the area of language and communication than ever before.

A mother is practicing pre-reading skills through picture reading with a young child.
A mother is practicing pre-reading skills through picture reading with a young child.

Is reading going out of fashion?

Reading is not going ‘out of fashion’. One of the main reasons we have a low academic pass rate, high drop out rate before matric, matriculants who are unemployable and a workforce that cannot cope in South Africa is because our literacy levels are abysmal. This is because we do not have a reading culture in South Africa. We are in the middle of a literacy crisis in this country. To read more about South Africa’s Literacy Crisis, please click here.

Literacy as a foundation and S.A.’s literacy crisis

Literacy forms a large part of the foundation for all other education and the sooner we understand this and start reacting appropriately to this crisis, by doing the basics such as reading aloud to children, the better. However, it is not only up to our government to fix this problem. It is up to all of us to do our bit :

  • with our own children
  • the children in our communities
  • and by supporting teachers, schools and local literacy programs in whatever way we can.

Summary

This workshop was about creating awareness, growing knowledge & skills around literacy development, inspiring attendees to do more and to make necessary changes at home and in the work they do with children.

For feedback on this workshop, please go to Mrs K. Mazhuwa’s feedback on the TESTIMONIALS page by clicking here.

Further reading

To read more about the Consequences of Illiteracy, please click here.

If you would like to find out about upcoming workshops or would like to book a workshop for your organization, please contact Lianne at Lianne@LBLiteracy.co.za

Articles

Why we should all be reading aloud to children – all children | Rebecca Bellingham | TEDxYouth@BeaconStreet

Rebecca Bellingham, dressed in a blue dress, addresses her audience.

In her TED Talk Rebecca Bellingham tell us, “As a teacher and a mom, I cannot think of many things that matter as much as reading aloud to our kids, at home and at school.” I completely agree with her. Being read aloud to stimulates the brain, triggers the imagination, transports you to another world, broadens your horizons with experiences that you may never personally have, triggers your emotions, allows you to put yourself in another person’s shoes and escape your own life, if only briefly. It is magic!

Rebecca passionately states, “Reading aloud gives kids a special kind of access to the transformative power of a story and the experience of what real reading is all about, which is to deeply understand, to think, to learn and discuss big ideas about the world, about the lives of others and about ourselves.” If you are reading aloud to your child daily, as you should be, these BIG conversations occur naturally. They are so important to the process of growing up.

What struck me most in this talk is that she puts forward the idea that reading aloud to groups of children makes it possible for some children to “get inside a book” in a way that they’ve never done before. For some children, this is their only opportunity to “get inside a book” and to see that movie inside their head. If no one is reading to them at home, this is it.

“Getting inside a book” is one of those very important stepping stones to reading. Children eventually want to control when and how they have this experience for themselves and therefore are motivated to pick up a book they may be dying to read because their friends are talking about it.

Reading aloud could be a catalyst to life-long reading and high literacy levels. The power of reading aloud to children cannot be underestimated.

Links

Why we should all be reading aloud to children | Rebecca Bellingham | TEDxYouth@BeaconStreet
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBuT2wdYtpM

To explore working with Lianne in Johannesburg (Fourways, Strathavon & Bordeaux South), contact her to find out how she can meet your needs.