A UK based non-profit organization, Universal Learning Solutions (ULS) has trained over a hundred thousand primary school teachers across the 36 states of the federation in jolly phonics with a view to facilitate early grade reading in public schools in Nigeria.
It could be recalled that a baseline report earlier released by the United State Agency for International Development (USAID) had revealed that only 1.5 per cent of pupils at early grade (Primary 1-4) in public schools in northern Nigeria could read and answer comprehension questions.
The Northern Programme Coordinator ULS, Malam Umar Faruk Bello who revealed the intervention in Kano in a remark at an award presentation ceremony organized in collaboration with the Kano state government for some jolly phonics teachers in the state, noted that the teachers were meant for over five million children at an average ratio of one teacher to fifty pupils.
He underscored the importance of jolly phonics in teaching children, describing it as the best teaching methodology for effective learning process among children.
“We discovered that the best way to teach the children is to engage them, making the lesson their own, engaging their multi-sensory parts, coming out with a pedagogy that the children can easily understand.
“We have our pedagogy in such a way that it has at least eight stages in teaching the children and we are trying to develop this 8 stages in developing another scheme, at least 5 schemes in literacy for example knowledge of the letter sound, how to write, how to blend the sound to form words and identifying sounds from names of objects and at the same time tricky words” he said.
He disclosed that ULS had in place monitoring mechanisms to ensure better performance and sustainability of the programme in the country and therefore urged parents to support their children to go to school for the brighter future of the country.
Represented by the permanent secretary, Kano state ministry of education, Hajiya Lauratu Ado Iso, the state commissioner for education Malam Sanusi Kiru lauded the initiative describing it as the only way to address the challenge of early grade reading in public primary schools across the country.
Daily Trust gathered that twelve teachers and eighteen school support officers drawn from selected Local Education Authorities in Kano were awarded for excellent contribution to the development of jolly phonics in the state.
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