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Making a difference with dictionaries

Every Child Deserves a Dictionary
Adopt-a-School Foundation is a proud beneficiary of the Oxford University Press 'Every Child Deserves a Dictionary' campaign which will see 20,000 dictionaries donated to its adopted schools across South Africa.

Tsholofelo Tlale, Grade 5 learner, watching the school’s co-ed cricket team, practice on the dusty grounds outside Mmuagabo Primary School
Tsholofelo Tlale, Grade 5 learner, watching the school’s co-ed cricket team, practice on the dusty grounds outside Mmuagabo Primary School
click to enlarge
Poppy Morule, Principal Mmuagabo Primary School, Bodibe Village
Poppy Morule, Principal Mmuagabo Primary School, Bodibe Village
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Gugu Motsamai, and fellow Grade 7 learners at Mmuagabo Primary School, learning how to use their new dictionaries
Gugu Motsamai, and fellow Grade 7 learners at Mmuagabo Primary School, learning how to use their new dictionaries
click to enlarge
The campaign aims to create awareness around the value of education and language.

Currently 10,000 dictionaries are being distributed to schools in five provinces - and the Adopt-a-School Foundation is calling on South Africans to assist in reaching the 20,000 goal by making a free pledge towards the campaign.

"Collaborations with organisations like Oxford University Press, who share our values, ensure that we make a greater, more meaningful, impact in the schools we serve. A dictionary can change a child's learning experience and every learner deserves one. We are proud to be a beneficiary of this innovative campaign," explains Stephen Lebere, Executive Director, Adopt-a-School Foundation.

The dictionaries are aimed at Grades 4 to 9 and will be complemented with worksheets, manuals and in some instances, dictionary training workshops. "Many of our young learners lack a basic understanding of the English language. With a dictionary in hand, they will have a better grasp of what is being taught in the classroom and this will add significant value to our on-going language and literacy programmes," says Ditshego Tsebe, Programme Manager for Adopt-a-School Foundation.

As a role-player in education development in disadvantaged schools, Adopt-a-School Foundation is focused on ensuring learners have the fundamentals in reading, writing and comprehension on which to build a solid education. Many elements play a role in building this foundation, including confident and skilled teachers, access to well-equipped libraries, and basic healthcare, such as spectacles for the visually impaired.

To date, the Foundation has built and equipped 12 libraries, and upgraded many more, trained thousands of teachers and provided spectacles to over 1,800 children. This holistic approach is called Whole School Development and is about investing in the infrastructure, curriculum and social welfare aspects of a school.

"A dictionary never gets old - look after yours and use it throughout your school career," is the message delivered by Nomhle Radebe, District Manager for Bodibe Village, to a group of learners who received dictionaries in March.

To support the initiative simply make a free pledge on everychild.oxford.co.za. Each pledge will result in one dictionary being donated.

30 Mar 2015 12:30

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