When a group of children from Ameneh Nursery visited the History of Childhood Culture ExpoMuseum in Negarestan Museum-Garden in ۲۰۱۳, the institute’s experts discovered the essential needs of these children to improve the vocal and auditory skills and decided to hold Read with Me program in this nursery relying on “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabet” Packages. This program was started in July 2014 in order to enhance the vocal and auditory skills of these children. Azadeh Sadeghi, a sympathetic trainer of RWM project, attends the nursery twice a week since that date and works on “Learning Sounds” and “Learning Alphabet” packages with children and reads other quality books with them. By her consistency, patience and unlimited tenderness, impressive positive changes have been made in lingual, social and emotional growth process of these children.
Because of the mental and physical condition of these children, though the progress has always been hard and slow, but 64 sessions of Learning Sounds Course have transformed the children so deeply that the nursery authorities are encouraged to accompany the program more than before. “During this time that children are with Sibilak (The main character of Learning Sounds Book) deep changes are seen among them that thrills the tutors and drowns me in happiness”, writes Azadeh Sadeghi in her reports, “For example a child who always detached others and liked to be alone, now enters the crowd and tells the story of Sibiliak. An infant who wasn’t self-confident enough to tell what he meant because of his speech deficiency which made him went on crying all the time, now, after working with “Learning Sounds”, speaks, asks and laughs. Now like other Sibilak‘s pals he knows that when we can talk, there is no need to cry. Now they all know that everything has a name and we do not call them all by “THIS”. They also know that all animals are not called “Doggy” and they all have their own name and their specific sounds. Another big change in children after working with “Learning Sounds Packages” is showing the ability of listening well. Also this book has influenced a lot on improvement of social relations and behaviors in children.”
Sadeghi believes that “Learning Sounds” stories have reconciled children with books, “Before now, these children used to tear books because of unawareness or to attract the attention. But now they sadly show me a small tear by the side of the book. Although still some of them use tearing book as a weapon to attract attention, but they know it is not a proper behavior and they would face their classmates’ objection if they do so.”
Now the face of the library has also changed a lot. The shelves are shorter so that the children can easily pick their favorite books from the shelves by themselves. Low quality books have been sent out of the library and they have been replaced by quality books. “These energetic children who need freedom and care, now sit calmly behind the desks even for some short minutes and turn the pages of the books and it is the most energizing and the most beautiful image,” Azadeh Sadeghi says.
“During the previous eighteen months with these kids I’ve recognized that babies and toddlers learn sooner than older children and the work’s result will show faster and more distinct with this children. This experience and studying the book “Baby Read-Aloud Basics” made me to start my work with babies and toddlers. So I started reading with one or two of them in short times since July 2014”, she continues.
After extensive consistency, the nursery authorities accepted to officially start “reading with babies and toddlers program” in this nursery. Also the nursery authorities agreed that the institute’s experts hold an appropriate library for babies and toddlers.
Sadeghi explains her experience as this: “Now that I start working with babies, the tutors ask me if it is useful for them at all or if they understand. They ask me why I spend so much time talking to them and they wonder if it wouldn’t be better if I spend this time with older children. But I believe by our constant and right action, the tutors in this section will realize that speaking and reading with babies and toddlers will bring them plenty of mental and physical benefits, as it has brought by now. Their curiosity can be a start point for fundamental changes in the method of behavior and spending time with babies and toddlers in this nursery.”