Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Teacher selected to accompany the African Storybook Project team to Nairobi!

Submitted by Fiona Beal
We are very pleased to announce that a teacher has been selected to accompany the African Storybook project team to an African Storybook project workshop as well as a Reading Conference in Nairobi in August.  The teacher is Yolandi Ferreira, the English teacher,  from Laerskiool Helderkruin in Johannesburg.

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Yolandi was competently aided by the computer teacher, Noeline van Wyk, and they sent in 63 very good stories written by different grades in their school.  They asked every child from Grade 3 - Grade 7 to develop a story using PowerPoint and a drawing application on the computer to write and illustrate their stories.


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Megan Rademeyer from SchoolNet was invited to attend one of their lessons and she writes ‘They did a session launching the project in the hall using two of the videos from the course videos and said how useful the webinars have been. Yolandi showed a PowerPoint while I was there using some course examples that seemed to get the class excited for the task. As a class they also used the Smartboard to collectively brainstorm one example story so they could get used to the terminology like "theme", "character", "plot" etc.

The kids are very excited about writing a story for a genuine audience and purpose.  They have been told that only the best ones will make it to the website - so they are really keen to make sure that their stories are good.

This is a really exciting project. The portal of stories will be great - but
the African Storybook Project is also doing worthwhile work in terms of encouraging good writing.”


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We say well done to Yolandi. At the pre Conference African Storybook project in Nairobi Yolandi will be sharing what she did with the African Storybook team from the four pilot countires in Africa. After that she will attend the Pan African Reading Conference in Nairobi. Again we say well done Yolandi and Noeline and congratulations to all your students!

Schoolnet and the African Storybook projectIt has been a great privilege for SchoolNet to be involved in this wonderful project by creating and running a four week free online course for interested teachers in South Africa in digital storytelling from 15th April to 15th May. There were several teachers who, like Yolandi, did a sterling job in coming up with a wonderful selection of stories from themselves and their classes. I am sure the African Storybook team had a difficult time selecting who would be the winner of their incentive prize.

Ways of illustrating storiesWe had a number of really excellent stories from teachers who discovered their writing gift within them. Something that fascinated me during this course was the ingenious ways that teachers used to illustrate their stories. Take a look!

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Fabric with felt cut outs which were then captured with a camera as shown in 
‘Emily and the Seagull’.

Own photos with words at the side and a colourful background as shown in ‘There’s a zoo in my school’.
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Some used royalty-free images from 
the Internet such as in ‘The sheep who wanted to knit’.

Some asked different learners in their class to illustrate each page as shown in ‘Sisipho signs away’.
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Some teachers asked their students 
to create their own illustrations using Microsoft Paint such as in ‘Bunny 
tells the children’.

Some asked their own family to do their illustrations
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Some created templates and coloured 
them in such as in ‘Khotso goes to the 
zoo’.
Some asked a talented friend to do their illustrations for them such as in ‘The noise in the night’.

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Some used royalty free pictures from 
Pixabay such as ‘Angus the Dinosaur’.

Some created tasteful collages made from different materials such as in ‘Nonyane’.
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Some used whole, original photos and pasted the words in a convenient spot 
as in ‘On Safari’.
Some used commercially obtained illustration programmes owned by their schools such as in ‘Monsters under my bed’.

We are looking forward to the launch of the African Storybook Project website later this year.

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