PRAESA offers hands-on training as well as consultancy work in:
- early (emergent) literacy
- language and literacy learning and development, particularly in multilingual settings
- multilingual materials development
- holistic language teaching practices for primary school aged children
- training curriculum development.
We train teachers, ECD practitioners, trainers and others in the education field to offer the kind of rich interactions, resources and activities that children need in order to grow into successful readers and writers. Our training options cater for different settings and levels of skill and interest.
The reports below illustrate some of our work. Contact us for more information.
PRAESA hosted an NCF Curriculum orientation workshop at the University of Cape Town from 22-26 January 2018. Advocates for Early Childhood Educational practice and research leaders joined us in exploring how we can ensure high quality learning opportunities in the daily educational life of our youngest citizens. Participants included academics; trainers of trainers; teachers, programme managers, municipal ECD staff and lead ECD practitioners; policy implementers; and training institutions.
Read our full report on our conference on Ensuring Affordable Quality in Early Childhood Education: What will we DO with the children on Monday? “The best way to prepare children for their adult life is to give them what they need as children” (Principle 1) said Tina Bruce in her keynote address, “10 Transglobal Principles of Early Childhood Education” (download full presentation), at our March 2017 Early Childhood Development Conference in Cape Town. This and the other principles affirm the importance of play in a child’s life – that play is not just a pastime in a child’s life but an absolutely vital part of early childhood development. Read our lively blogs by Rujeko Mayo and Ivan Kiley about the happenings and read and listen to UNICEF South Africa’s Andre Viviers. There’s more in these workshop summaries from Carole Bloch on emergent writing (and here’s Carole’s presentation), Sara Stanley and Nolubabalo Mbotshwa on story telling and early literacy (and presentation), Georgie McCall and Peter Hadebe (and video) on nature, Tina Bruce, Xoliswa Ndhove and Madeline Mdladla on gifts and occupations – exploring mathematics, and Stella Louis and Mandisa Nakani on observing children and schemas. Listen to Carole Bloch on emergent writing, Stella Louis on schemas, and Karin Murris of the University of Cape Town (and Karin’s presentation) who provided a reflective window on the workshops. This conference was a collaboration between PRAESA, UNICEF, The Froebel Trust, the Department of Higher Education & Training, and the Centre for Early Childhood Development – offered a range of opportunities for participants to observe, experience, discuss, analyse and act to ensure the fundamentals of quality in an inclusive, principled and transformative curriculum approach in early childhood education. Through keynote talks and interactive workshops, the conference brought theory and practice together to reaffirm what quality in early childhood education means for all young children, making visible, simple but profound elements, drawing on commonly held principles, and making transformative links with the South African Education 0-4 framework and curriculum requirements of Grade R.
Issues in the development of multilingual children’s literacy and literature in South Africa – taking stock
A two-day seminar at Biblionef in Pinelands, Cape Town, was funded by IBBY International and PEN International, and organised by PRAESA, with support from IBBY and PEN SA. About 50 people took part; from PRAESA, Nal’ibali, SA Book Development Council, Puku Foundation, NECT, FunDza, DBE, DACT, Bookdash, The Children’s Book Network, academics from various universities, practitioners, literacy activists, editors, publishers and others. All are involved in different ways and to differing extents in the South African multilingual children’s literacy and literature domain. Increasing attention is being focused on the development of reading culture and on children learning to read and write. Yet the foundational significance of the multilingual children’s literacy/literature domain as part of larger cultural, political and economic transformative action in South Africa tends to be largely overlooked. The intention was to pause and share information about some of the progress and challenges as a step to inform and clarify ongoing action. • Download our report, see the programme and listen and watch conference participant Cebo Solombeba, University of Fort Hare, performing a beautiful and impressive Xhosa poem about the promises government makes to society.
Training for Early Literacy Learning (TELL) project
The TELL project was set up to help transform the quality of literacy and biliteracy teaching in South Africa by developing practical training materials underpinned by meaning-based theories and pedagogies for initial and in-service teacher education.
PRAESA and colleagues at the University of Reading worked together on the adapting and developing materials, which could be useful in a wide variety of multilingual settings, particularly in Africa.