Archive for February 2, 2014

the nature clubchameleon

Although there are large numbers of learning difficulties to be found, reading difficulty seems to be the  most common. I first learned to read in Sepedi, and I believe that I transferred the skills that I acquired to my second language.

Children are known to learn English more quickly and effectively if they maintain and develop their proficiency in the mother tongue. One useful reading skill is the ability to guess the meaning of unfamiliar words from context. However growing up in rural Limpopo this reading skill was something that my peers and I struggled with as English was shoved down our throat, despite it being maybe our fourth language. Truth is we didn’t use the English anywhere at all. Not understanding this language, we lacked the ability to decide which new words in a text are important to look up in the dictionary and which words can safely be ignored. It was hopeless and discouraging.

It’s a common sense that children aren’t born with an innate knowledge that text is read from left to right, or that the words on a page are separate from the images. Essential pre-reading skills like these are among the major benefits of early reading. Therefore I’d say that early reading for children helps them to view books as an indulgence and not just a chore.

As a rural schoolboy at Kodumela Primary School, I was discouraged to read and to discuss schoolwork because of the language barrier. The mission of starting Rural in the Citi Movement was to try and assist in resolving this issue. Writing and publishing books in Sepedi is because I believe that developing mother tongue proficiency is easier since a child has lessons each week in their native language. Also rural communities contain fewer adults who could act as successful role models to children. As a result, the Movement contributes by gathering artists to conduct reading and art workshops with school children in various rural schools t.

For more information on our recent publications please visit or email us at: