31ST AUGUST, 2021
Attainment of literacy takes place in stages with each phase building on the previous ones. Early literacy development is the essential building block for gaining skills that will help children learn to read before they get into school or in preparation for reading to learn. Strong connections have been established between children who learn to read early in life, success in school work as well as lifetime academic achievements.
Literacy-rich environments with adults reading to children have been proven to be of great help in inculcating early literacy. Public and community libraries are an example of such literacy-rich and child-friendly spaces that play effective roles in introducing books, reading and the needful skills for learning. These institutions are most critical for children from homes where parents/guardians/caregivers cannot afford to have and/or maintain a literacy-rich environment. This has huge implications for Africa that has the highest number of out of school children, low investment in early literacy development (pre-primary education) and where the literacy rate is below the global average.
African Library and Information Associations and Institutions (AfLIA) working with Neil Butcher and Associates (NBA) ran a survey as a baseline study for an Early Literacy Development course for African Librarians. The survey was driven by country-champions who ensured that public and community libraries in their individual countries participated. This was done to find out what already exists so that it can be properly and adequately built upon.
Join us on the 2021 International Literacy Day, 8th September 2021 by 10:30 (GMT) to find out who the Champions who drove the Early Literacy Development are, the countries that participated, how many public and community libraries have story hour activities, what they do during the story hour programme and attendance to such programmes as well as staffing and other critical issues in these libraries.
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