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Take a look at in-depth pieces and powerful narratives from some of South Africa's best literary minds and critical thinkers, as well as the latest Nal'ibali news and updates. 

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Nali'Bali in the media

Top 15 ways YOU can be a FUNda Leader

Posted on
July, 8th 2016
FUNda Leaders across the country are stepping up to do wonderful things in their communities. The main thing they want to tell other prospective FUNda Leaders is that no matter how small the literacy activity, it has a huge impact on the children you're helping. So whether you have a few hours or just 30 minutes a week, there are things you can do...
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The power and point of reading aloud

Posted on
April, 14th 2016
Dr Carole Bloch is the director of The Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa (PRAESA), which is driving the Nal’ibali reading-for-enjoyment campaign. Her own experience of reading is one that brought her to where she is now:   My favourite time all the way through school was at the end of a day, when our English teacher would say, “Put everything away,...
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Mark my words: Literacy through culture

Posted on
April, 14th 2016
When we speak or write to each other in the same language, it’s easy to assume that we share the same understandings. Yet we also know that it’s quite possible to ‘miss’ one another – both as we speak, and when we read what someone else has written. In face-to-face communication, because we are there on the spot, we have a relatively good chance...
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Our Story, Your Story: Finding meaning

Posted on
April, 14th 2016
Lisa Cohen is a storyteller, facilitator, children’s story author, programme developer, early childhood development advocate and creativity sparker. She is currently the portfolio manager of parenting programmes at Ilifa Labantwana, and programme manager for the Our Story, Your Story project with Clowns Without Borders, South Africa. Lisa speaks about her own journey with stories and its personal and political meaning: Story-time with my dad was my...
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In 2014, South Africans helped us read aloud to 50 000 children. In 2015, you helped us reach 166 360 children. And in 2016, thanks to parents, teachers, librarians, family members and hundreds of readers, we read to 365 849 children – more than double our previous number and an astounding record for Nal’ibali and South Africa! The power in partners This year, we joined forces with the...
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This story was inspired by the work of the late Patrick Whitaker, a wonderful educator; Sara Stanley, an inspirational early-years practitioner; and renowned American kindergarten teacher Vivian Paley, now retired.  Once there was a little boy who started school. Each day his teacher would tell him stories. He loved the stories – stories about dragons and princes, about giants and hyenas, witches and fairies. Stories...
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Have you wondered why there is so little continuity between learning in the foundation phase and the wonderfully rich invention that characteris es learning in the preschool years? Well, there is no abrupt turnaround in how young children learn just because they move into a school system. The enormous learning strides that children make before Grade 1 should continue by leaps and bounds. Having some...
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I have just achieved one of my ambitions as an early literacy specialist – helping to bring into being several little board books for babies and toddlers in all of our 11 official languages. You may ask why on earth babies and toddlers should get books when they can’t even talk yet, and how can it matter what language to use when the babies obviously...
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In 2014, South Africans helped us read aloud to 50 000 children. In 2015, you helped us reach 166 360 children. And in 2016, thanks to parents, teachers, librarians, family members and hundreds of readers, we read to 365 849 children – more than double our previous number and an astounding record for Nal’ibali and South Africa! The power in partners This year, we joined forces with the...
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Adults as reading role models

Posted on
March, 17th 2016
  Smangele Mathebula is the Nal’ibali Campaign Driver and a literary activist who enjoys sharing her love of reading through the giving of books. She speaks to us about how adults become children's immediate reading role models: Emilie Buchwald says, ‘Children are made readers on the laps of their parents’, and this couldn’t have greater significance in my reading universe. Adults are often great mirrors to...
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