Reading Ghana is part CODE’s international programming based on a comprehensive readership initiative known as Reading CODE. Together with our local partners, we work with teachers, librarians, writers, and publishers in developing countries to support and sustain the development of literacy learning in schools from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
Reading CODE is based on two essential elements: interesting books that are relevant to the readers and written in languages the readers understand; and meaningful engagement with these books through high quality teaching. Drawing on over fifty years of experience, Reading CODE is based on best practices in the teaching of reading, writing, and critical thinking, along with a proven model of successful collaboration with in-country partners, to ensure long-term sustainability of our impact.
- Reading Ghana
In this programme which is fully funded by CODE, GBT works with the Ghana Education Service and other stakeholders to promote capacity building in the development and promotion of children’s reading culture, to increase program quality and to expand GBT activities to cover more schools in the country. Currently GBT’s area of concentration is in the Ashanti Region and in three districts: Bosome-Freho; Asante Akim South and Amansie Central.
The teaching methodologies promoted by Reading CODE, and by extension Reading Ghana, draw from evidence-based best practices in child-centred learning and aim to make the student an active participant in his or her own learning journey. Master teachers reinforce the methodologies by adapting them to local circumstances.
The quality of teaching and training in the programs is maintained through the provision of clearly written instructional guides both for teachers and trainers. Standards and rubrics set clear quality targets for teachers, trainers, and project managers. Careful plans are developed for recruiting, training, monitoring, and evaluating teachers in each project.
The most qualified teachers are given further preparation to become trainers of other teachers, while working with carefully structured materials and observing the project’s standards. Project plans include disseminating the contents of the project to local teacher training agencies and education ministries so that education officials, and other local leaders, are motivated to sustain efforts to ensure long-lasting results.
During the 2012-2014 fiscal years, GBT trained 18 Lead Trainers who are Trainer of Trainers. GBT trained 133 teachers from 47 schools in strategies in the Teaching of Reading. GBT also trained 16 students from the Colleges of Education.
From 2012-13, these teachers were trained in the Teaching of Reading for Primaries 1-3. The training is based on the NALAP, which is the Ministry of Education’s Educational Policy of early teaching of pupils in their mother tongue. 2013-14 saw the introduction of the Teaching of Reading in English for Primaries 4-6. This is to enable pupils switch from the mother tongue to English.
Mobile Library Services for Remote Communities in Ghana
Through the joint initiative of the CODE, Ghana Book Trust and the Ghana Library Authority, a mobile library van stocked with over 8,500 books and five computers was launched in July 2013. The mobile library service travels around four districts of the Ashanti Region and services over 45 communities, which do not have their own libraries.
The mobile library service visits selected central locations for a few days at a time, making books and computers with internet access available to the surrounding communities, and runs reading promotion activities as well as ICT training for youth and adults alike. The districts of Asante-Akim South, Adansi North, Amansie Central and Bosome-Freho will initially benefit, with the hope of expanding the service to other locations in the future.
864 children and 40 adults in two of the selected districts have already registered for the service.
Library Management and Reading Promotion Programme
The Ghana Book Trust, with support from CODE runs capacity building workshops for teachers in the management of libraries. Facilitators for these workshops are from the Ghana Library Authority, the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and the Ghana Education Service. In support of the schools that the GBT works with, libraries are also established. Library furniture consisting of book shelves, 8-seater tables, chairs and books are distributed to each school that has had teachers trained in Library Management.
GBT receives containers of children’s story books and information texts selected carefully by GBT’s staff, Reading Ghana international volunteers and CODE. These North American books are distributed to schools to help create a pool of books with a minimum 2,000 books per school or a 7 to 1 book – student ratio. Ghana Book Trust uses a selection criterion that targets specific grade-level titles to procure locally published books. Sixty percent of these materials are in Twi due to Reading Ghana’s area of concentration
During the 2012-14 fiscal years, GBT trained 47 teachers and supplied tables, chairs, bookshelves and books to 47 schools within its area of concentration.