The power of engaging around stories: Evidence from the Biblionef and Western Cape Education Department Book Project

South Africa’s foundation phase reading is in crisis. As evidenced by studies such as the 2016 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS), 78% of Grade 4 students cannot read for meaning in any language. Several South African NGOs are trying to address this fracture in our education system.

In 2016, book donation organisation Biblionef – with the support of the DG Murray Trust (DGMT), the South African Library and Information Trust (SALI) and the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) – initiated a 21-month pilot project with foundation phase teachers at 10 primary schools in the Beaufort West district in the Western Cape. The main aim of the project was to determine the impact book donations would have on teachers and children when coupled with training. This learning brief shares what was learnt through the mixed impact study conducted as part of the project.

Download the Power of Engaging around Stories learning brief here or page through it in ISSUU below – choose full-screen mode [   ] for a better reading experience.  You can download the full Hands-on Learning publication (Issue 13) here.


Share this post

Get the latest news & updates:

Select the specific themes and topics that interest you:

Other news and articles:

Hands-on Learning Issue 27

Through the newly rebranded edition of our Hands-on Learning publication developed in June 2023, we hope to play a helpful role in synthesising information from

Read More »