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Feb 20, 2018

BUDDY READING- LEARNING TO READ WITH PEERS

Learning to read with peers.
Learning to read with peers.

Reading has been an essential component of MMC’s education programme. In order to encourage reading habits in a growing child, MMC has a library programme in place, where books are easily accessible for children to read at each of our centres.

Reading and arithmetic competencies are assessed at the time of admission and subsequent assessments are done at regular intervals of three months. The reading competencies of children are categorised into one of the three groups- Red, yellow and blue.

The Buddy Reading– an innovative project was introduced under the library programme of MMC. This new projectwas carried out  at two daycare centres on construction sites run by MMC. The project focussed on peer-reading to accelerate reading attainments among the children of migrant construction workers attending our day care centres. The intention was to increase peer learning and thereby develop interest among the children towards reading.

As per the new method, one child from each of the groups (red, yellow and blue) was made to sit together (1 Red + 1 Yellow + 1 Blue) for the reading sessions. The child from the blue group (children who are able to identify all letters and can read words and sentences) helped the children from the yellow and red groups to read.  In the period of 4 months from May 2017 to August 2017, 26 sessions of 30 minutes each were conducted with 20 children at a centre located in suburbs of Mumbai while  24 sessions with 27 children were conducted at a centre in Navi Mumbai.  The children were assessed for their reading skills at the start (base line test) and at the end (end line test) of the project. Five parameters were used for the assessment of children’s reading abilities:

- Letter recognition - Word Structure - Sentence Structure  - Comprehension - Number of Words Read per Minute

There was an evident increase in the average scores of the children across all reading parameters indicating that there was definite improvement in the reading skills of the children as well as their understanding of the content they read. Improvements were notable for the reading parameters Word Structure, Sentence Structure and Comprehension.  

Improvements in number of words read per minute were observed among children across all the three groups. Overall, average number of words read per minutes increased from 39 at the baseline to 57 at the end-line assessment.

Children from the red group with a minimum reading competency at the outset benefitted from this intervention the most.  There was a decline of 19 percentage points in the Red Group children with a corresponding rise in the Yellow group and Blue Group children.  The percentage of children in Blue Group with highest proficiency in reading rose by 17 percentage points with 66 percent children in Blue Group at the end of the project.

The children who did not progress to a next reading level did not differ from those who progressed on the parameters of monthly family income, maternal employment and total number of Buddy Reading sessions attended. However, they were typically younger (average age 6.5 years) than the children who progressed to the next level (average age 8.6 years).

 Buddy Reading project intervention successfully facilitated peer learning among the children of migrant construction workers at the two daycare centres of Mumbai Mobile Creches.

 Your contributions have helped us to run the programme in effective and sustainable manner. If you would like to contribute to the programmes of the Mumbai Mobile Creches, you can continue doing a monthly donation at the following link 

https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/mumbaimobilecreches/ 

Child enjoying reading of storybook with a friend
Child enjoying reading of storybook with a friend
A child from a centre trying to read the book
A child from a centre trying to read the book
Nov 30, 2017

Agar MMC Nahi Hota Toh (If MMC didn't exist)

Gurfan,9 year old depicted story through painting,
Gurfan,9 year old depicted story through painting,

Migration poses unique challenges in extending any support to our children living on construction sites, mainly because they are constantly on the move – from one construction site to another, and from one city to another. Almost three-fourth of the children who are enrolled at our day care centres stay with us for less than six months making it very hard to measure impact of our programmes using quantitative methods. MMC documented its impact in an innovative way by asking children how their lives would have been without MMC, in Hindi, “Agar MMC Nahi Hota Toh.” Children created vibrant paintings to depict how their lives would be without MMC. Through the paintings and narratives, children described how MMC provides a sanctuary from harsh conditions on the construction sites.

Gurfan (9 years)

Gurfan is a shy nine-year-old who doesn’t really like to talk much. But the picture this young boy from Bihar painted is worth a thousand words. Gurfan drew how Agar MMC Nahi Hota Toh, he along with other children would have played on the construction ground, and probably got injured by falling bricks or debris. Gurfan moved to Mumbai three years ago and has been attending the MMC centre for the past one year.

Saheli (13 years)

Saheli’s parents migrated from the Sangli district in Maharashtra almost seven years earlier, but it was only in 2013 that Saheli came in contact with MMC’s day care centre. Thirteen-year-old Saheli made a painting of the time when there was no MMC centre at their construction site. The painting depicts, Agar MMC Nahi Hota Toh Saheli and her brother would have been standing helplessly whenever it rained. Saheli said: “As our parents would lock the house and go for work, we would spend our time loitering here and there. When it would rain, we would get drenched because there was nowhere to go. We would roam outside in the rain and in the scorching sun. MMC protects us all and teaches us good things and makes us literate.” Saheli’s teacher says that she is studious, has beautiful handwriting, and her favourite subject is English. 

Sarita (9 years)

Agar MMC Nahi Hota Toh, nine-year-old Sarita would have had to spend her days at home doing chores like sweeping the floor, washing clothes, and getting water from the neighbourhood tap. Attending school would have been impossible. But eight years ago, Sarita’s parents moved to Mumbai from Chhattisgarh in search of work, and after they started working at the current construction site, Sarita got enrolled to MMC’s day care centre. Sarita now regularly attends the nearby municipal school too.

She says MMC gave her a better opportunity to study – not just because it helped her enter a municipal school, but also because of MMC’s active after-school support programme. Though Sarita loves to study at her school, she really enjoys the topics covered every month at the centre. MMC’s internal curriculum follows a theme-based approach where a new theme is introduced every month and teachers use local materials to plan creative lessons to make education an enjoyable experience. Hence Sarita says, “We can’t learn all those things in school which are taught here”. She says, “In other schools we will just go and study. We can’t have that sort of fun which we generally have here.”

MMC’s greatest impact can be seen in how the children attending MMC’s day care centres enjoy their childhood the way it is meant to be. 

A Vibrant painting by Sarita 9 years old girl
A Vibrant painting by Sarita 9 years old girl
Saheli 13 year painted how MMC provides a safety!
Saheli 13 year painted how MMC provides a safety!
Sep 15, 2017

Read to Grow!

Child engrossed in reading at our centre
Child engrossed in reading at our centre

“It is not always possible for me to read at home, but I am happy that I get the opportunity here at our centre to read interesting story books.  I love reading story books with mysteries.”

The above quote is a sharing by Ankita*, a child from our daycare centres on construction sites. As many of the children we cater to are first-generation learners, they are limited in their access to quality reading materials. With this in mind, MMC’s library programme ensures access to quality, age appropriate reading materials for children at our centres. Interactive reading sessions inculcate a love for books among children and provide them opportunities to read both independently and with others, and engage with the texts in meaningful ways. The library programme is one of the children’s favourite in MMC’s education programme. There are four important components of our library programme:

  • D.E.A.R. (Drop Everything and Read) gives children time each day to spend reading independently or in small groups.
  • Mujhe Padhkar Sunao (Read to me) programme encourages parents to read picture books to their children when they drop them off or pick them up. This creates a wonderful bond among parents and children.
  • Story Time takes place once a week, during which teachers narrate a book and conduct follow-up activities.
  • Phirti Library allows children and parents to check out books at MMC’s centre library corners, twice a week, to take home with them. The community has really enjoyed being able to take books home to share with other family members and read in their free time!

It amazes us when our children climb up the ladder from recognising letters to words and ultimately reads the story books fluently. Radha* is a 9 year old girl from the state of Jharkhand which is over 1500 km away from the city of Mumbai. Her family migrated three years ago to Mumbai. Radha’s father works as daily wage worker on a construction site in Navi Mumbai while her mother works a domestic helper in nearby residences. When enrolled at the MMC daycare centre on the site three years ago, Radha was in the red group (beginner level) and was able to identify simple letters. Over the years at MMC, Radha’s reading has improved a lot. She is now in blue group (advanced level) and able to read story books fluently. *names changed to protect identity.

Books for children in MMC’s Library according to Reading levels

  •  Red: The child is able to identify some letter but has poor skills to read simple words- 1600 copies of 184 books
  • Yellow- The child is able to identify simple letters and words- 3217 copies of 445 books
  • Blue- The child is able to identify all the letters and can able to read words and sentences-3467 copies of 436 books

The MMC library programme, called “Read to Grow,” which began in October of 2012 is now in full swing.Our library made available 8,500+ copies of over 1,000 titles for children. We thank you for your support for Mumbai Mobile Creches and we look forward to your continued engagement.

If you would like to contribute to the programmes of the Mumbai Mobile Creches, you can consider doing a monthly donation at the following link: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/mumbaimobilecreches/

Teacher reading story to our creche section !
Teacher reading story to our creche section !
Children reading books!
Children reading books!
Story Time :)
Story Time :)
 
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