This is a relatively new initiative that intends to instil a reading mind frame to the grade 8 and 9s with hopes that it will not only improve their spoken English and Xhosa but rather also boost their self-confidence and introduce them to a new world with no limits and boundaries that exist only in the imaginative plateau.
The idea is to have 15 learner from each grade 8 classes and also same with the grade 9 classes. These will be tasked with meeting twice a week at break time to read and share stories and summaries with discussions and looking up words in the dictionary.
As an initiative this will tie in well with Sifunda Kunye Literacy program that is currently running at St Matthews’s high school in Kieskamahoek.
This was initially the brain child of the then English teacher Mr. Kepe, who managed to engage with various libraries and got boxes after boxes of donated books. Unfortunately there were no shelves then to display the books so they gathered dust, till an idea was brought up for book shelves to be installed in the lab. After that it was just a matter of blowing the dust of the books and arranging them nicely in the shelves.
The library has been a huge hit especially in an area with no library at all and an initiative is still being worked on to invite the main feeder primary school learners to have access to the library, so as to have an early foundation and introduction to reading materials.
The library although not yet fully stocked hosts a vast amount of books that appeal across the board from the lower grades to the upper grades although at the moment we do not have any vernacular reading materials.
Another Sifunda kunye initiative one that has so much interest but suffers severely because although there is a playing field that was donated by Transnet some many years back it has dilapidated to a dismal state and the hoops have been utterly destroyed and unfortunately there can never be basketball without the hoops.
Maybe an engagement with Transnet might be ideal, to try and get them to re-commit to a social responsibility that really matters to the learners coming from hard rural conditions.
Being a former first team basketball player both at lower high school and all the way through university, I truly find it disappointing to constantly have the learners asking when there will have practice sessions and when there will travel to St Matthews to engage with the team there as it is the only other school that offers basketball in the five Sifunda kunye sponsored schools.