Lessons on Monday 9 September and Tuesday 10 September 2019

Newsletter 22 February 2020

Hello Visitor,

The 8th of September is International Literacy Day which means that many schools and other organisations will be celebrating literacy for the whole of next week. We will start the celebrations with our Buddy Reader programme this Saturday and then all new volunteers are invited to attend our informal volunteer training at Piatto's after school this Monday from 10:30am.

Read Below About:

  1. Our Saturday Buddy Reader Programme continues every Saturday - 9am to 10:15am.
  2. Update on little "Office" in Malawi who will most likely be coming to South Africa for his treatment. If you have Voyager miles or reward points with South African Airways - he needs your help!
  3. Past DCS pupil - Nopinki Alem is moving from a shack in Diepsloot to an RDP flat and needs help equipping her new home with furniture and appliances - please see her wish list below. 
  4. The Building of the Multi-purpose/Health Hub
  5. Our usual Teaching programme for Monday 9 September and Tuesday 10 September -  this week
  6. Volunteer training - informal 1 hour session on the Phono-Graphix Reading method on Monday 9 September from 10:30 to 11:30am at Piatto's. This will form part of our International Literacy Week celebrations and all new Tuesday volunteers are invited to join us as well. 
  7. How you can sponsor and learner and other on-going campaigns
  8. What our Partner Projects are up to and how you can get involved
  9. Some important Dates to Diarise

1. Saturday Buddy Reader Programme starts tomorrow

Our Saturday Buddy Reader programme runs from 9:00am to 10:15 every Saturday. Volunteers who can join on any given Saturday (during term time) would be greatly appreciated so that the kids can get more personalised attention. The programme is run by 3 DCS teachers, and is not dependent on us, but any extra help is appreciated. 

We know that Saturday's are precious family time for many of our volunteers, but if you feel you could commit to one Saturday a month, we are looking for at least 4 volunteers who could commit to one Saturday each month to be the meeting person and take any interested visiting volunteers through to DCS on their allocated week and read with a small group.


2. Update on the young Malawian boy "Office" who will most likely be traveling from Malawi to South Africa for his treatment. 

Many of you supported our recent "Spare change round-up" for the little Malawian boy, "Office".

We been in touch with the Malawi Children's Mission and the organisation is trying to arrange for Office to come to South Africa for his treatment - but the obviously need all the help that they can get to make this happen.   

An Update and Urgent Request:
Ken and Phoebe are exploring 3 potential programs for Office to receive cancer treatment; chemotherapy followed by radiation. The most viable option is at public hospital in South Africa. The decision must be made in the coming days. Right now we are working out options for transport on South African Airlines from Blantrye to Johannesburg and looking for Star Alliance OR Voyager reward points that a donor could gift for the flights. Please email me at karen@malawichildrensmission.org with questions or interest.

Follow Office and his story here on the Malawi Children's Mission Facebook Page 




3. Nopinki - DCS past pupil and member of the sewing group needs help to kit out her new flat.

You may recall Nopinki's Story (see attached) and how she completed a Clothing Manufacturing Learnership with Sew Africa and then volunteered with our Sewing Group to give back to her own school and community. She has been on a waiting list for an RDP flat from the government and will be moving out of her shack in Diepsloot and into a flat in Riverside, in between Steyn City and Riversands. (See photo below).

She will finally have electricity which will enable her to use her sewing machine and laptop every day and in her own home which will be great for raising her child and running her business both known as "Thando" as she has named her business after her child.  

In the interim we would like to help her kit our her new home, so if you have any of the items on her wish list below, that you are no longer using or need, please let us know. 

Nopinki's Wish List

Security bolt for the door
Coffee table
Kitchen kits


The area where Nopinki's flat will be

4. Building of the Multi-Purpose / Health Hub getting underway soon - help needed 

Sue Huck has been working with the Rotary Club of Swindon in the UK and The Rotary Club of Sandton over the last few years to get a Multi-Purpose / Health Hub built at DCS. This hub will provide the school with a much needed sick bay, a class room and meeting area for Edu Fun activities as well as a venue to house all of our partner projects. 

The project is about to get started and the hub should be built by the end of the year, but we need your help. 

If you have any contacts in the building industry, please can you forward the attached bill of quantities to them and see if they can donate or facilitate a donation of any of the materials that we need. We are able to issue a tax certificate for the value of any products that are donated.

There is an overview document attached which describes the project as well as the latest bill of quantities and a plan of the hub. Please can you share this info with anyone who you feel may be in a position to assists us.



Final planning stages


5. Teaching Programme this coming week - Monday 2 September and Tuesday 3 September 2019

Volunteers will meet Gillean on Monday and Jenny on Tuesday at Piatto's at 8:30am to car pool to Diepsloot. Please read the basic lesson plans for Monday and Tuesday below and attached.   

Monday 9 September 2019

We work with 200 + Grade 2 learners every Monday. All the children have been assessed and have been grouped
into ability levels. 

Most of the groups are working in the Pink Level of our programme, building and manipulating 3 sound word, but we are starting to introduce 4 sound words in some of the groups. The basic lesson plans and worksheets are attached to give you an idea of how we teach as well as the words that we will cover. 

We try to allocate volunteers to the same group each week but we might make some changes on the day. 

The groups will be as follows

  • The Pink Group will be with Lianne Bantjes, Ms  Nkosi  in the 2a classroom. The focus here will be on 3 sound words, but starting with the first few letters of the programme c, a, t, o , p, m, s, f.  Volunteers: Annika, Dudu, Cornie, Liesel, Natasha, (one of these volunteers may be asked to join the Blue group for Monday)  

  • ​The Blue Group will be with Gillean and Ms Mothapo in the Grade 2b classroom. The focus here will be on 4 sound words and using the same skills and letters learned to date when building, manipulating, reading and spelling slightly longer words. Volunteers: Gayle, Anne, Claire, 

  • The Green Group will be with Sachi and Ms Makgoba in Grade 2c. The focus here will be on revising all the 3 sound words and finalising the Pink Level of the programme. This group will be moving onto the Blue level soon where the same sounds will be repeated, but with 4 sound words. Volunteers: Judy F, Harriet, Monique, Allyson. 

  • The Purple Group will be with JuttaNthabiseng and Jeanne. The focus here will be on 4 sound words and using the same skills and letters learned to date when building, manipulating, reading and spelling slightly longer words.

  • The Orange Group will be in the container classroom with MeghanThe concept of variation in the English language has been introduced to this group where the learners are discovering that there are several ways to show the "o-e" sound: oa, ow, o-e etc. Volunteers: Priyanka; Judy V.

Where possible, volunteers work with the same groups each week

New volunteers will be assigned before the lesson and sometimes volunteers will be asked to assist a different group to try and balance the number of volunteers in each group. 

We meet at Dainfern Valley Shopping Centre at 8:30 outside Piatto's and car pool to Diepsloot and will be back in Dainfern by 10:30/10:45

Gillean will be the meeting person at Piatto's. 


Monday lessons are in larger groups ranging from 35 to 50 children where we have one group leader
assisted by 3 to 4 other volunteers and a DCS class teacher in some cases. 


Tuesday 10 September 2019

Volunteers work with small groups of Grade 3 learners on Tuesdays. Each volunteer is allocated to 3 or 4 learners at similar ability levels.  Regular volunteers will be assigned to the same group of learners each week. 

The Tuesday programme is a great opportunity for volunteers to work towards their international certification as a Phono-Graphix Reading Therapist. We work in small groups and work through the programme systematically teaching children to read from 3 and 4 sound words on wards.  We currently have 4 of our volunteers working on their internship. 

All groups will start on the Pink Level focusing on 3 sound words. The following techniques are followed each lesson which are elaborated on in the attached lesson plans. 

  • Word building

  • Phoneme Manipulation

  • Word Reading

  • Word Spelling

Volunteers meet at Dainfern Valley Shopping Centre at 8:30am outside Piatto's and carpool to Diepsloot and are usually back in Dainfern by 10:30am.

Jenny will be the meeting person on Tuesday at Piatto's.


Tuesday lessons are in smaller groups  - 1 adult with 1 to 3 learners in a group. 
Several volunteers who attend on Tuesdays are working towards their international certification 
as a Phono-Graphix Reading Therapist which is an option offered to all regular volunteers.

6. Phono-Graphix Reading Method  - Volunteer Buddy Reader Training

Our literacy lessons are based on the Phono-Graphix Reading Method and all volunteers are welcome to attend training with Read for Africa at any stage.

Once a term we do scheduled a Phono-Graphix Coffee session at Piatto's where new volunteers can attend a brief and informal training session (approx 1 hour) where the basic concepts behind the method are discussed and demonstrated. 

The next Phono-Graphix coffee session will be on Monday 9 September to kick-start our International Literacy Week celebrations. We will meet at Piatto's after school from 10:30am until about 11:30am. If you usually attend on a Tuesday, we hope you can still join us on Monday 9th September for this session. 

In the interim, you can click on this link to watch a YouTube video which gives you an overview of the method and some insight into teaching reading in SA. You can fast forward to about the 11th minute if you just want to just view a bit of a demonstration on how we build words and do buddy reading. 


Regular volunteers are also welcome to attend a more in-depth course on Phono-Graphix and can visit the Read for Africa website or email buddy@readforafrica,com to find out about the courses. Volunteers can attend courses at no charge, but if you would like your own set of resources or would like to work towards the international certification in the method, there would be a nominal fee. 

7.a. Sponsor a learner at Diepsloot Combined - R500 per child/year 

If you are in a position to make a donation of R500 you will be paying for all the Edu Fun activities including literacy classes for one child in Grade 2 or 3 for the year. This amount covers all the stationery and worksheets for the year as well as any special excursions or gifts. All the kids receive the same benefits throughout the year, but it obviously just helps us to reduce our costs and provide more to each child when individual kids are sponsored.

When you sponsor a child we allocate a learner to you and send you a photo. We then send progress reports and updates on their progress at various stages in the year.

In order to get a South African Tax certificate please do an EFT into the Edu Fun bank account. 

You can sponsor a learner via EFT (bank details below) or you can follow this link to make a credit card payment.  Please leave an "appreciation message" as "SPONSOR A LEARNER & YOUR NAME" in the relevant section.

Bank: FNB
Branch: Randburg  
Branch Code:  254005  
Account Name:  Edu Fun  
Account Number:  62242345438

Please send us an email and let us know when you've made a payment and give us the name of the child you would like to sponsor or we will just allocate one of the children to you. Please also indicate via email if you would like a South African tax certificate.

If you pay tax in the United States or the UK, the Global Giving Platform may be of interest to you. 


7.b. On-going Campaigns - please share this information with your friends and colleagues

The Global Giving and MySchool platforms have increased our fundraising potential as these are both platforms that make it very easy for our supporters to give us money. 

Click on ether of the images below to find out more about both of these campaigns. If you have a Woolworths card, you can very easily link it to our MySchool campaign which means Woolworths will give Edu Fun money every time you swipe your card, at NO cost to you.  You can also fill out the attached form and send it to us or directly to My School. 

Please note that  Walton's is also a MySchool partner - so please keep this in mind when buying all your stationery. 


Thank you to many of you who have already linked your cards and are already swiping away with your card so that Edu Fun can benefit. 




Ngangifisa and the Food Pantry - next food distribution is scheduled for Wednesday 18 September 2019 at 11am 

Ngangifisa supports 12 of the most vulnerable families in DCS. Within these 12 families there are 55 children. Most have lost one or both parents to violence, disease or have been abandoned. 
On the last Wednesday of every month we meet with the eldest child in each family. We share a meal with them, provide emotional support and give them a month’s worth of non-perishable food. Go to ngangifisa.com to learn more or contact us at ngangifisa@gmail.com. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated.

Baby Club

The Baby Club supports young mums, their babies and children at a  crèche that they work with that is close to DCS. The aim is to ensure that these teenage mums stay in school and finish matric despite having the additional responsibility of having to look after a child. 

To find out more about the Baby Club and to see photos of their recent party follow this link to their
Facebook page


The Top Up Project - Mending School Uniforms

This group mend school uniforms on a weekly basis after our Tuesday Buddy Reader Programme. They also provide new school shoes when funds allow. They have recently added shoe polishing to their services which will help protect the shoes for longer and also give some of the school shoes a face lift before needing to be replaced altogether! 

To see what Veronika and Karin are up to, follow them on Facebook by clicking on this link. 


Health Project - Eyesight, Dental, Nutrition checks - continues on Tuesday 10 September 2019.

We provide health, eye and dental screenings to all students at the school. We meet every Tuesday at 8.00am at the Dainfern Valley Shopping Centre returning around 11.00am. It is not essential for volunteers to have medical training. During the screening, children are identified and referred to the appropriate health professional for follow-up. For more information, please contact Michaela at healthgroup@edufunsa.co.za. 

Several of the regular health group volunteers have relocated, so please consider assisting the group on Tuesdays.  All our literacy efforts have more of an impact if problems like poor eyesight, nutrition and other health issues are detected early.

Please contact Jenny on 082 322 0608 or email info@edufunsa.co.za if you have any general queries. You can also contact the relevant person mentioned above for specific projects or events.

Please see the dates to diarise at the bottom of this newsletter for the rest of this term.

Please click here and "Like" our Edu Fun Facebook page if you haven't already

You can also find us on Instagram @edufunsouthafrica  

Thank you
Jenny and The Edu Fun Team 



September 2019

  • Lessons continue - Monday 9 September and Tuesday 10 September 2019 - 9am to 10am. Meet at Piatto's at 8:30am

  • Saturday Buddy Reader Programme - Saturday 7, 14 September  2019​

  • Monday 9 September  - Volunteer Phono-Graphix coffee session for new volunteers at Piatto's 10:30am to 11:30am.  We will go over the basic principles behind the method we use to teach reading. 

  • Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th September - International Literacy Week celebrations. 

  • The term ends on Friday 20 September, so our last lessons for the term will be on Monday 16 and Tuesday 17 September.

  • Ngangifisa Food Pantry distribution  - Wednesday 18 September 2019 at 11a.m. Go to Nganfisa.com for more information. 

  • No School on Monday 22, Tuesday 23, Monday 29 and Tuesday 30 September

October 2019

  • Lessons for the 4th term will resume on Monday 7 and Tuesday 8 October 2019
  • Post programme assessments will commence mid-October. 

November 2019

  • Monday 11 November - Grade 2 Year-End Graduation Party

  • Tuesday 12 November - Grade 3 Year-End Graduation Party