Compelling Success In South Africa

SounsCount: Mid-year assessments for two Grade R classrooms: One where learners are taught in home-language (N=35) and one (N=42) where they are taught in second language.


The  5 year old children from these two Grade R classrooms in the township of Mamelodi* began their work with Souns in January 2013, several weeks after the beginning of their school year. These assessments were administered in late May 2013. Considering school holidays and only a portion of their year completed, the results (percents) are stunning. According to the teachers and our observation, building words and sounding out words – the application of letter-sound knowledge –  are regular activities in the classroom. When the school year ends in December, the learners will be well on their way to a successful school year in Grade 1.

While each classroom is demonstrating notable success, there is a distinct difference between the class which is teaching children in their home language (above) and the class where children are being taught English (below), a second language for the learners. It will be interesting to see the results as the children in the two classrooms continue through the Souns program.


Based on the joy we witnessed in the classrooms, these children are learning the fundamental skills of writing and reading – letter-sound associations – with fun and exploration. The teachers are engaged with the program and excited about the results. Souns® works!

This is a Rotary literacy project initiated by Rotary Districts 6900 and 9400. Thank you, Rotary Club of Pretoria East in RD9400 and Rotary Club of Peachtree City in RD6900. Children have a better path ahead because of you and the The Rotary Foundation.

*Mamelodi is a township of over a million population:

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