In belated recognition of International Literacy Day (September 8, 2017), we would like to tell you about SIL LEAD’s involvement in the Ghana Partnership for Education: Learning. Learning is part of the USAID Partnership for Education project. This project supports the early grade reading and literacy improvement activities implemented by the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service. Through this project, the work of SIL LEAD consultants may benefit over one million children and 30,000 teachers in eleven different local languages.
Earlier this year, seven SIL LEAD consultants led a 9-week materials development workshop in Tamale, Ghana. This workshop focused on the development of Kindergarten (KG2) Term 1 and Grade 1 (P1) Term 1 reading instructional materials comparable to materials developed during the Dagbani reading prototype. These materials were developed in 11 official Ghanaian languages and will be used in a national scale-up prototype program. The workshop included 44 mother-tongue authors, eleven illustrators, seven SIL LEAD reading consultants, and five experts from Ghanaian partner organization GILLBT. We are pleased to report that the workshop was very successful and that the materials development goals were accomplished.
A second 9-week workshop is now underway in Tamale and another will be held in early 2018. During these workshops, SIL LEAD consultants will facilitate the development of the remaining pupil and teacher materials for KG2, P1, and Grade 2 (P2). In addition to scripted lessons, new pupil books (including both decodable and leveled texts and exercises) and supplemental teaching and learning materials will be developed.
In other news related to this project, the first ever Spelling Bee in a local Ghanaian language was held in July. Competitions among 20 schools prior to the Spelling Bee resulted in 77 children qualifying to compete. These top spellers gathered in the town of Yendi and competed in 11 rounds to determine a winner, runner-up, and a third place winner. Prior to the start of this project, Dagbani children could not sound out more than three letters in a minute. During the Spelling Bee they were asked to spell four to eight syllable words. Now that is progress!
To learn more about this project please see:
Dagbani Prototype Brochure
Ghana Learning Brochure
You can also watch the video below to learn about the Dagbani language pilot project which served as the basis for the materials currently being developed.