Living Social Justice

A blog about responding to poverty and injustice, everyday and in all sorts of ways

Literacy Feedback: Amy Learns Spanish

Most of us can recall a favourite book from our childhood that we just couldn’t put down. Sue Taylor, a Literacy Programme manager, shares what happened when one little girl found hers.

Chloe poses proudly with her English/Spanish book

Amy* poses proudly with her English/Spanish book

With great excitement, Amy* leaped out of her chair at the end of Literacy class to go and choose her very first ‘Take Home’ book. The learners were thrilled when they arrived at class to discover that we finally had library books that they could take home to read with their families. And that every time they returned them, they could take out another one. What a treat!

Most of our children in the Literacy Programme have no books at home at all, but thanks to a generous donation we’re now able to provide books for them to take home.

Amy came back with a book that had her intrigued. Every page had a tag at the bottom and when she pulled it down it revealed words she had never seen before. I worried that these new words would confuse her, but she was adamant that this was the book for her. So, we had a look.

She read out the word “hello” and then, when the tag was pulled down, sounded out the word “hola“. And again, once she read “goodbye,” she pulled the tag down to reveal the word “adios“. “What is this?” she asked and I explained that the book was written in both English and Spanish and that she had just read two Spanish words.

Her eyes grew wide and a huge grin spread across her face as I explained that because she was now reading she could even learn another  language.The penny dropped in that little head at that moment as she realised that reading opens doors to anything you want to learn about. in my family we call that a ‘Red Bull’ day – learning had taken wings!

Thank you to everyone who has supported the Literacy Programme either with their time or with a donation. You have helped open up new horizons for the students in the programme.

Muchas gracias, as Amy would say 😉

Keen to find out more? Email us for details on how you can get involved with the Literacy Programme at schools in various areas around Cape Town. 

*Name has been changed

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4 thoughts on “Literacy Feedback: Amy Learns Spanish

  1. Nathalie on said:

    Ah – what a lovely story! Thanks sue 🙂

  2. Richard Lundie on said:

    Just love this story! One so easily forgets the doors that can be opened by basic literacy. Thanks, Sue, for faithfully serving the children in this school!

  3. So cool.. thanks for writing this Sue, I miss you guys and hope to be back soon!

  4. Roger Wood on said:

    Fantistic story! Perhaps even a good incentive to people to see if they can’t contribute funds to extend this type of library into other schools.

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