From Reading Aloud and Learning Sounds to Making puppets with teachers in Zahedan
In December 2015 four Read with Me experts, under the supervision of Sepideh Armin travelled to Zahedan to hold the first series of RWM workshops in this City.
This year Read with Me project started its activities in 12 elementary schools in first and second districts of Zahedan and some nomad schools for 2000 students in the first grade, by the financial supports of Yavari Cultural Community and cooperation of Sistan and Balouchestan Education Office.
In these workshops which were held for 80 teachers accompanied by managers and authorities from Zahedan Education Office, the institute’s experts, Sepideh Armin, Mahtab Moghaddam, Fereshteh Dabbagh and Sara Yousefpour, held “Knowing Children’s Literature”, “Knowing Quality Books”, “Story Elements”, “Reading Aloud with Children Methods”, “Art workshops”, “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabets” Workshops in order to promote Book Reading and improve visual, auditory, speech and writing skills of children.
On the first day of workshops, the tutors were divided into two groups in the morning and in the afternoon and each group learned about literature and Quality Books. By giving examples of quality books and low quality books, the importance of reading quality books with children was described for trainees and websites where they can refer to, to find appropriate books for children were introduced. Teachers also learned about different kinds of illustrated and picture books, the importance of pictures in children’s books and Reading Aloud methods and techniques and recognized Story Elements (Plot, Characterization, Setting, Subject and Theme) by short simple examples and group practical work.
The teachers learned as well about games and practical activities related to books in order to share the joy of reading with children. Book related dramatic arts workshop was held upon the book “Rosie’s walk” and the tutors learned how to make a scene from this book, how to make hand puppets of characters in the book and and play with them, while practicing in groups which was well received by teachers and tutors. In this section teachers, using their creativity and cultural symbols and native elements added a fired oven and a millstone on the scene which totally changed the atmosphere of performance.
Second day of the workshops was dedicated to teaching Creative child-centered education package of “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabet”, the remaining parts of Reading Aloud Workshop, Making Masks, Methods of Documentation and RWM Report writing Format.
In “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabet” section the teachers comprehended the concept of sound and phoneme, importance of helping children with knowing their vocal and auditory system. They got to know “method of dialogic reading”, “lingual awareness”, “ineffective communication” and the importance of songs and rhythm in lingual growth of children. Also the trainees experienced the aplication of songs and music in creating joy and improving the learning of phonetic concepts. The teachers showed lots of interest in this part.
In “Learning Sounds Workshop” presence of puppets named “Sibilak” and “Kaka Kalagheh” (characters from the books “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabet”) made a happy and intimate atmosphere in the workshop.
Another part of the workshop on the second day was dedicated to supplementary and motivational points, practicing Reading Aloud in groups and also Reporting and Documentation. Making different kinds of masks for book characters was part of Book related Dramatic Activities which was in the curriculum.
In this two-day Workshop some methods such as brainstorming and various games and relaxation were used to create an atmosphere of intimacy, cooperation, friendship and increasing concentration so that the teachers can play these games with children in their classes.
Mr. Nakhai Head of Sistan and Balouchestan Education Office expressed his satisfaction from Read with Me implementation in the province after visiting the workshops.
This post is also available in: Persian
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