|Nelson Mandela Day 2010: 67 Minutes To Make A Difference|
|Written by The Nelson Mandela Foundation|
|Thursday, 01 July 2010 12:01|
‘It is not beyond our power to create a world in which all children have access to a quality education. Those who do not believe this have small imaginations...’ - Nelson Mandela, at the founding of the Nelson Mandela Institute for Education and Rural Development
Nelson Mandela Day 2010 is dedicated to the visions of the Millennium Development Goal 2; calling for quality education for all of our children. On 18 July 2010, organise your family, friends, colleagues, or congregation to join people around the world and spend at least 67 minutes to contribute to quality education for all. Government carries the responsibility for ensuring quality education for all of our children, but government cannot work alone. We can collectively make a difference in for our children’s future.
Stepping in: early childhood development
1. Painting and Refurbishment: Many local crèches and Grade R classrooms are not safe, warm and cheery. Make introductions at a local crèche. Find ways of collecting materials like paint. Come together on the 18th of July to refurbish or paint a local crèche. Make sure you use warm and cheery colours!
2. Educational Toys: Many crèches have few toys. Simple toys (especially building blocks and wooden block letters) are very easy and fun to make. Make a set of building blocks or letter blocks and donate them to a local crèche!
3. Books: Most of crèches and Grade R classrooms have very few story books – books that make reading and listening to reading fun. Donate some of your favourite books to a crèche. Or write one of your own! Remember, it is particularly important at this age to find and write books in children’s mother tongue!
4. The Act of Reading: One of the most important things we can do to support quality education for all is to find ways of reading to children in joyful ways. Most children have few joyful exposures to books. Find a local crèche or just a local group of children, and volunteer to read to them on Nelson Mandela Day – perhaps you will find you can read to them more regularly!
5. The Act of Telling A Story: Children learn by hearing stories and words used in different ways. Many of us have stories that we can tell that are very interesting to children. Find a local crèche or just a local group of children, and volunteer to tell them a good story on Nelson Mandela Day – perhaps you will find you can do this more often!
6. Reading Clubs and Story Telling Clubs: Once you start reading to children you will sense its joy and power. Bring other people in your community to establish a regular reading club.
7. Supporting Play: Children learn through play – independent play and organised play. Find a school, crèche or group of children that you can support learning games during breaks or after school. Children as young as 6 enjoy organised sport. Start a soccer club, with an emphasis on all-play.
These are only a few ideas. Good work is always rooted in respectful and humanising relationships. Ask the teacher at your local crèche for ways in which you can most usefully support.
'Where there is poverty and sickness, where human beings are being oppressed, there is more work to be done. Our work is for freedom for all. After 90 years of life, it is time for new hands to lift the burdens. It is in your hands now.’ - Nelson Mandela, 2008
Make every day a Mandela Day...
Teachers must always be sensitive to children’s safety, and should never leave children alone with adults they have not come to trust.
For more information about Nelson Mandela Day contact Frank Meintjies: 011 547 5600/ www.nelsonmandela.org