FP Reading Conference a great success!
14 September 2022
The Western Cape Education Department’s (WCED) Foundation Phase Curriculum team hosted its maiden Reading Conference on Saturday 13 August 2022.
This auspicious occasion was aligned to the WCED key priorities which includes improving literacy in the province. The department launched the Western Cape Reading Strategy in 2020 to elevate reading as a priority. Team Read was introduced as part of the strategy to garner everyone’s help in improving reading.
The Reading Conference was attended by the Minister of Education in the Western Cape, David Maynier, the Head of Department, Brent Walters, Head office and district officials.
Minister Maynier acknowledged the different stakeholders in attendance and said that Team Read was all about coming together to make our readers fly high in the Western Cape.
"The gift of reading is not only about learning but also a gift of well-being,” Minister Maynier said.
A total of 670 vibrant teachers from the eight districts across the province attended the conference. The event was also live streamed and attracted almost 10 000 views to date. The conference can be viewed here.
Learners from the host school, Brackenfell Primary, dressed as various book characters, welcomed delegates on a chilly Saturday morning. The children’s outstanding manners and hosting skills were commended by all who interacted with them.
The programme director, Permie Isaac of Funda Wande, set the tone for the conference with her enthusiasm and kept the audience engaged. She loved showering teachers with amazing freebies from publishers who attended and generously shared resources.
Multiple talents were highlighted during this conference. The choir of Abedare Primary School received a standing ovation for their rendition of a song that was developed specifically for the Foundation Phase. The song, Early Foundations, was adapted from a poem written by the WCED’s Deputy Director-General: Curriculum and Assessment Management, Haroon Mahomed. The music was composed by the Music department at Head Office. The choir received standing ovation. Listen to it here Reading Conference - Foundation Phase Song 2022.
The Foundation Phase reading ambassadors warmed the hearts of participants when they shared their love for reading and creative ideas on how they will be spreading the importance of reading at their schools and in their communities.
Teachers were exposed to both theoretical and practical presentations from leading experts in the field of reading. Good engagement between presenters and participants were observed.
Teachers walked away with not only a bag full of goodies but also armed with ideas and enthusiasm to implement something new in the classroom.
The great success of the Reading Conference indicated that teachers want to stay informed and be skilled in their craft. Every child in every classroom needs to access literacy and this conference has certainly empowered teachers to work at making this possible.
Watch out for #TeamRead as they continue to promote reading in our schools and in communities