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Reading adventure

Music teacher Johnny Koieman.

Music teacher Johnny Koieman.

Students of St. Elizabeth Primary School were taken on an adventure today.

Delving between the pages of several books, the youngsters were shown how educational and fun reading can be.

Principal of the St. Elizabeth Primary School Ingrid Prescod told the Barbados TODAY team today during the St. Joseph school’s Reading Day themed, Read and Start Your Adventure, they want “our children to foster a great love for reading”.

The children participated in activities such as storytelling, drama and rhythm poetry with folk singer Johnny Koieman.

Organiser of the event and remedial reading teacher Jacqueline Parris said that she sees reading as a fundamental skill which everyone should have if they want to succeed. In the classroom setting reading is encouraged through various activities such as quizzes, story grammar, comic moments, reading train and DEAR sessions- this is where the entire school Drops Everything And Reads.

“We want to show our children the value and importance of reading because they cannot function [properly] in life if they cannot read,” Parris said.

The teacher who was a reading specialist for the past 25 years said the children are all tested to determine their level of competency skills and then are separated based on their level of reading.

A multi sensory approach is used in teaching to get the children more involved in reading as well as games, puppetry and drama.

Parris said difficulties with reading came because of the different attractions however this will be combatted because distracting technologies would be used to get the children involved in reading. In addition the reading teacher held the belief that more parents needed to assist and follow up on what is done at school in the home environment.

Prescod said as part of the reading day, Days Bookstore was invited to the school so the students would purchase some of the books with the assistance of parents who were present.

The Principal noted that they encouraged their children to read items with colour and pictures such as comics, newspapers and magazines to stimulate that interest in reading.

Koieman who is a music teacher at the All Saints Primary said, “You cannot do any subject if you cannot read because all the subjects depend on your ability to read so that tells you that reading is paramount.”

In terms of how he uses music as a strategy to get pupils to read, he said that although it might appear boring, reading could be overcome through music which is a great vehicle to convey that message.

Music is attractive with the beat and melody therefore it is stimulating and motivating and therefore because of this motivation it is very effective, Koieman stated. (MR)

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