Teaching kids to love reading

The pupils dressed up as story book characters.

When Ridwan Samodien, principal of Kannemeyer Primary School in Grassy Park, heard that eight out of every 10 Grade 4 pupils could not read with understanding, according to the PIRLS (Progress in International Reading Literacy Study) results, the school launched the #KPSReadingRevolution, on World Read Aloud Day, Wednesday February 5.

PIRLS is a large-scale assessment designed to inform educational policy and practice by providing an international perspective of teaching and learning in reading literacy.

Mr Samodien said: “We launched a year-long reading competition to encourage a love for reading and ultimately reading with understanding. We have constructed Flamazing Flamingo carrying six letter boxes, each representing a colour value, associated with a grade.

“A learner will read a book, complete the entry form listing his name, title of the book, longest word and the secure signature of his parent and then his teacher or any staff member. He then qualifies to deposit the entry form in the letter box, and then stand a chance to win R500 at the end of the year for having read the most books.”

Mr Samodien said all grades participated in World Read Aloud Day event and they had paired grades into reading buddies, for example, Grade 7s read to Grade R, Grade 6 to Grade 1, Grade 5 to Grade 3 and Grade 4 to Grade 2.

Their task was to sit on the stoeps and read to one another once a week.

Mr Samodien said they had requested all partners associated with their school to participate in their mini billboard initiative, providing their own personal quote and a profile picture.

“These billboards will adorn the corridors at school. We have invited former head boy, Lester Kiewit, now CapeTalk show host and journalist, to read aloud to our #KPSKlevaKids. He has agreed to be our patron, making us one of the first schools to have its own patron.”