The first training session in January started with an icebreaker leading up to educating facilitators on team work and setting goals for the year. The main focus was on classroom management, discipline and the role of facilitators in the programme. Facilitators soon realised their required contribution in making the programme a success and were shown how classroom management and discipline contribute to the provision of a better afterschool environment. They were given an example of a lesson plan and spent time working out a two-day lesson plan with assistance from the team.
Regarding academic work, the facilitators were taught to incorporate literacy and numeracy into the theme of ‘my body’, with a core focus on vocabulary expansion (learning new body related words) and mathematics (the counting of body parts). Extra resources were handed out to supplement the worksheets provided.
February’s training focused on the themes of family and emotions. Facilitators were taught how to use magazines and role-play to teach a theme while also including mathematics and language in their lessons. Additional worksheets were provided to assist students in learning about mass and volume as well as 2D and 3D shapes. Emphasis on the sensory learning was an important aspect during the session and facilitators were encouraged to teach learners to use their bodies when expressing their emotions.
This month, lower grade facilitators were introduced to the concept of using household items, like bottle caps, in mathematical lessons, for counting across multiplication, division, addition and subtraction. In the language component, they were taught to use clay and other materials as well as clapping and sounding out techniques for phonetics teaching, concentrating specifically on words ending in ‘t’ and ‘d’ in Afrikaans. They were also given paragraphs and asked to identify parts of speech, as well as a mind map with the summary of parts of speech for them to use.
The high school facilitators indicated that they required assistance with comprehension and parts of speech, so their training focused on equipping facilitators with the necessary knowledge and skills in this area, incorporating games and ‘think boards’ as an introduction to language teaching aids. The aim was to make provision for the various ways in which students learn and to help expose their thought processes so that facilitators can quickly recognise the root of individual learners’ challenges. Ultimately, we would like learners to be more confident about their linguistic ability and to make learning more fun! Facilitators were provided with additional resources to use in class and encouraged to develop their own. The use of proper nouns was incorporated into the teaching of different continents, passports and other countries. Facilitators were also part of an employee wellness session and were educated on self-care, the importance thereof as well as some suggestions on how to apply it.