Hundreds of learners from twenty-one schools in the Bahlaloga Circuit in Moletjie have benefited immensely from the University of Limpopo Debating Society (ULDS) during the Language Enrichment Activities (LEA) programme held recently
LEA, former Masifunde Sonke, is a project of the Ministry of Education that seeks to increase literacy and a joy in reading among learners in rural and township public schools in South Africa as well as facilitating contact and exchanges between South African and the United States schools, educators and learners.
The ULDS trained learners on debate, poetry, storytelling and ‘spelling bee’ as an attempt to mitigate the challenge of reading and writing mostly experienced in rural schools due to lack of study materials.
“Too many learners from rural schools struggle with writing and reading owing to insufficient study materials,” explained Masindi Musetha, ULDS representative and Bachelor of Accounting Science student. Musetha added that their organisation partnered with the circuit to advance the literacy command among the learners, especially in English as a language.
Willy Ward, Chairperson of LEA Committee and English teacher at Mamolemane Secondary School said the annual programme targets at learners whose understanding of the English language proved to be a barrier to excelling at school.
He further said : “The aim of hosting the programme is to support learners who are lagging behind in communicating in English as a medium of instruction in various subjects. English is a challenge for most learners especially when writing exams, so, the LEA programme bolsters their confidence when communicating and performing arts projects, such as poetry and story-telling.”
Expressing his excitement, Glen Machaba, Grade 8 learner at Mamochoko Secondary School, said learning new debating techniques was what he needed as he debated against the motion: “ Farming is the main source of poverty eradication”.
Equally thrilled, Kabe Malefa from Kaputla Primary School, said she felt confident going forward after she received feedback about better ways of reciting poetry. “Poetry is what I always wanted to pursue at a professional level and the lessons on language was a booster as I can now play around with words,” said the Grade 7 learner.
Source University of Limpopo