Reading and Early Literacy Development


Finding the ‘ordinary magic’ that made me resilient

Photographer Wandie Mesatywa is incredibly resilient as you will read in this essay, in which she shares her story from being a youngster in rural Eastern Cape to becoming a teaching and exhibiting artist. What makes a person resilient?  Are we born that way?  Do you have it or you don’t?  Wandie takes us on […]

Posted on 5 Nov 2019

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The Human Factor 2

We are proud to release the second issue of our Human Factor publication. Entitled ‘The heart of parenting – how the alchemy of love, hope and fear prepares children for life’, this issue explores the power of parents as their children’s first educators and their right to continue to champion their children’s education throughout schooling.

Posted on 23 Oct 2019

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A snapshot of our reading culture in South Africa – time to spread the love

“It’s been more than 25 years since I met Mr Dube, my English language teacher, and I still remember him vividly.  For his second lesson, Mr Dube distributed newspapers to every student and instructed us to read them.  After fifteen minutes he requested all those who had come across new words to write them on the […]

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Posted on 7 Sep 2018

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Nal’ibali

Nal’ibali Sparking children’s potential through storytelling and reading Reading gives children the power to think critically and to imagine. It builds empathy for others. It is key to a child’s future because it is the foundation for learning. Children who love reading can help change the path of our country – reading will help us […]

Posted on 4 Sep 2018

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A million happy faces: Nal’ibali talks about the success of World Read Aloud Day 2018

We were so excited by the fact that Nal’ibali mobilised South Africans to read to 1 294 345 children on World Read Aloud Day this year, that we asked them to tell us how they did it:    You have seen an 80% increase in the number of children who were read to on World Read […]

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Posted on 16 Mar 2018

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We do have solutions for SA’s reading crisis

The national senior certificate results are an important annual benchmark of the state of education. In 2017, they showed some improvement, with a pass rate of 75%. But they have two major limitations. First, they reflect only the achievement of that half of school-leavers who actually wrote the grade 12 exams. The other half had […]

Posted on 16 Mar 2018

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Creating a Story-Powered Nation

“Reading opens up new worlds. It gives us power – to learn new things, tell our own stories, and shape our futures”.  [Extract from a Story-Powered Nation] At DGMT we often talk about the importance of reading, of ensuring that children are ready to read when they go to school. We believe it is a key […]

Posted on 7 Sep 2017

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How to make sense of mother-tongue instruction debates

Many parents find the debates about mother-tongue instruction very confusing.  All they want to know is “what is best for my child”? Is it better to introduce English sooner or later?  Will my child get mixed up if she learns more than one language at the same time?  Is it best to send her to […]

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Posted on 2 May 2017

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Volunteer-driven literacy programmes in schools: why parents and teachers join, and why they stay

The degree to which children acquire language skills is a strong predictor of future academic success, educational attainment, employment and income.  In fact, reading is a powerful tool to tackle poverty and inequality: when children read for pleasure, it has a greater effect on their educational achievement than their family’s socio-economic status. There is thus […]

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Posted on 30 Sep 2016

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Four key elements of an effective learning environment and practical strategies to achieve it in a rural environment

Axium Education is an NPO based in Zithulele, in the rural Eastern Cape. For the past two years, DGMT has supported three of its educational programmes: the Community Reading Programme (in-school early literacy support for Grade R-3), the MasaKHANe programme (after-school Maths and English support for Grade 6-9) and the Ekukhuleni programme (after-school/weekend Maths, Science […]

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Posted on 15 Aug 2016

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