Reading Challenge: KEEP Laments Youngsters Struggle to Recognize Words
Monrovia – The Kids Educational Engagement Project (KEEP) continues in its efforts to support various educational activities in Liberia and as part of those efforts, the organization recently started a campaign called “I Can Read” which promotes reading in early learners.
The drive though has not been without challenges.
KEEP’s Founder & Executive Director Brenda Brewer Moore explains that in interactions with many of the students both in rural Liberia and Monrovia, she and her team observed that many of the children struggle to read. “They struggle to recognize words and many do not know the meaning or understand what they read. Most of the students have low reading fluency and we thought that this would be a good way to get more students into the habit of reading,” she says.
The KEEP Executive said they are working with teachers to set time aside during the week to devote just for reading with the students.
She noted that with the impending closure of schools in the country, she and her team of volunteers intend to utilize the free time of the students and work with teachers in several public schools on the reading campaign during the two-month school break.
“Our target is on early learners, particularly children between K2- 3rd grades. Our plan is to also get as many parents involved also.
To get them to read to and with their children. The learning cycle includes parents, but many leave the education of their children solely to the schools and teachers. We as parents need to get involved. “said Ms. Moore during a recent interview with FPA.
One of the strategies KEEP is using to get the students into reading is by providing them access to a variety of story books and informational texts and conducting “Reading Hour” with the students.
Recently during one of its “I Can Read” reading sessions, KEEP invited recently published Liberian poetry author, Mr. Lekpele Nyamalon who read several poems from his book “Yearnings of a Traveler”.
The students were read several books written by Liberian writers like “I Love Liberia” written by Ms. Wayetu Moore and “ In Monrovia, The River Visits The Sea” written by Patricia Wesley”.
During the reading sessions, the children were introduced to several new words where they learned the meaning, usage and pronunciation.
One of KEEP’s Board Member, final year medical student, Ms. Deddeh Supuwood also participated in the reading hour with the students where she captivated the attention of the young readers with the book “The Princess and the Pea”.
KEEP intends to run the “I Can Read” reading campaign in Montserrado and Gbarpolu. KEEP is a local non-profit organization that supports educational activities in Liberia. You can read more about their work on www.keeplib.org or call 0886510731 if you would like to support its programs.