In South Africa, most of the adults who spend time with children in their various capacities as parents, teachers, caregivers, adopters or custodians, do not regularly read aloud to them. And even if they do, with repeated readings of favourite storybooks, most can’t sustain the activity long enough for it to become a habit.
This is because if they choose to read in a mother tongue other than English, after a month or so they deplete the available supply of books.
In South Africa, it is only printed stories in English that are published prolifically – a critically important point to stress. This leaves aside, for now, all the questions about the choice and availability of wide-ranging and enticing stories.
Read it at the M&G.
Graphic – John McCann