In a country where illiteracy levels are still on the higher side, World Vision Malawi is striving to make a difference through an output called 'Motivating learners participation in literacy' through literacy fairs like debates and spelling bee competition among others.
A recent study done by World Vision Malawi has revealed that 87% of learners in the country's primary schools do not know how to read or write a development which the organization has described as unfortunate and needs addressing.
The organization's Education Technical program manager Thandeka Nkhonde attributed this to ineffective teaching by teachers in primary schools and lack of textbooks which learners can use.
Nkhonde made the remarks in Mzuzu during a regional spelling bee competition the organization conducted with its partners Zodiak, Super Maheu, Spell Master Education and the ministry of education.
"Learners in early grades of classes 1 to 4 are not able to read and write for example in 27 area programs in 15 districts where we conducted an evaluation study its only 13% of learners who were able to read with comprehension meaning 87% were not able to read with comprehension which is a very big challenge that we need to work on", said Nkhonde.
He said the spelling bee competition will go a long way in ensuring that learners in primary schools are able to read and write with comprehension.
"So there so many challenges like ineffective teaching that is going on in schools because most teachers lack knowledge on how to improve reading and writing so you will see that there was a national reading program which was trying to address the same challenges", said Nkhonde.
Nkhonde also said most learners in early grades don't have much time to spend on reading hence they are working with parents to help the learners have ample time of reading in the country.
Weighing in on the issue acting chief education officer for Mzimba south, Mighty Kayoyo conceded that many learners mostly in primary schools are finding challenges to read or write.
Kayoyo commended World Vision Malawi for implementing the spelling bee competition which he described as a milestone in ensuring that learners are able to read or write.
"The competition is very useful so I have to thank World Vision Malaŵi and other partners for coming in because it has made our learners to socialise with other learners from the districts and the city and it's an eye opener that most of the students this time fail to spell words accurately so this is a very good initiative", Said Kayoyo.
Mary Nkhonjera a teacher at Chalunga primary school in Mzimba said the spelling bee competition will also help ease their work as many learners will be able to participate in lessons after gaining knowledge in reading and writing.
" The initiative by World Vision Malawi will greatly improve teaching and learning as more learners will be motivated by the competition and at the same time this will make our classroom work become easy as most learners will be able to grasp what we are teaching",said Nkhonjera.
World Vision Malawi is implementing the spelling bee competition in partnership with Zodiak, Super Maheu, Spell Master Education and the ministry of education where the national finals are slated for July this year.
The initiative is being funded through their sponsorship program.
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Last modified on Friday, 04/06/2021