Teacher training at Ikamva Labantu’s Kwakhanya Early Childhood Learning Centre
Kwakhanya means moving from darkness into light and our new centre in Khayelitsha does just that. It provides the setting for training Early Childhood Development (ECD) practitioners to understand child development and learning and the opportunity to apply this theoretical knowledge in a real “live” pre-school which also operates in the centre.
Kwakhanya launched in April this year and the training is well underway with trainee practitioners coming from selected pre-schools in the surrounding townships. The first course in basic ECD skills with 20 trainees concluded in June. Besides training in childhood development, other relevant topics included illiteracy, poor health, poverty, HIV/AIDS, children’s and women’s rights, child abuse and protection and minimum standards for ECD provision.
This same group of trainees has now embarked on the second part of their programme in Babies and Toddlers Development and Care. This provides information and practical experience in the psychological, emotional and social development of babies and toddlers, including feeding, adult/child interaction and the importance of play.
A second group of 20 trainees started a programme in Support, Mentoring and Coaching at the beginning of June. This training includes facilitation and mediation techniques, understanding stages of childhood development, designing indoor and outdoor classrooms, learning outcomes and assessment standards.
A Language Enrichment programme given by our resident speech therapist started at the end of May. This is designed to enhance practitioners’ knowledge of the importance of language development and stimulation in pre-schools. Practical workshops develop skills to transfer to the classroom.
The pre-school on site is a model school where trainees can practice their newly learnt skills in a real educational environment before returning to their own pre-schools. We currently have 45 children, aged 0 to 6, attending the school and accommodated in 3 well-equipped classrooms. These children have been selected from Ikamva Labantu’s Orphans and Vulnerable Children programme. In this way, we are able to enhance our existing services to the families that we support and address the children’s developmental needs at the same time.
Your support in this project is helping us to make a vital difference not only to the development of pre-school teachers, but also to the lives of those children in their care whose potential can be realised through appropriate stimulation and learning.
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