The Education ministry has signed a Memorandum of Understand (MOU) with Chris Jolly, the originator of Jolly Phonics to incorporate the teaching method in basic schools across the country.
Addressing stakeholders at a dinner in Accra Tuesday Mr Jolly indicated his preparedness to train teachers in Ghana to teach reading and writing, the Jolly way.
Mr. Jolly promised to give teachers in Ghana an initial training in the teaching of Jolly Phonics free.
Jolly Phonics is a teaching method that helps children to learn through play, songs and actions.
Children are taught to read and write using synthetic phonics, which is widely recognized as the most effective way to teach reading, spelling, punctuation and grammar.
It is a fun and child-focused approach that teaches the alphabets using sounds and blending these sounds to achieve full pronunciation of whole words.
Although Jolly Phonics originated 25 years ago, Jolly Phonics was introduced in some basic schools in Ghana, in 2017. Hitherto. Some Montessori schools had adopted the approach. Currently, there are 10 jolly phonics trainers in Ghana.
Demonstrating to Joynews how she uses jolly Phonics to teach, a teacher Mary Teye explained to JoyNews how her transition to using the previous method of teaching phonics to the use of Jolly Phonics has greatly improved teaching and learning in her class.
She testified of how some the performance of her pupils have improved after the introduction of Jolly Phonics in teaching.
Director of Early Childhood and Basic Education at the Education Ministry, Margaret Okaine, said schools in 39 districts across the country have already started using jolly phonics.
She added that more than thousand pupils in public basic schools have been introduced to Jolly Phonics.
She disclosed plans are underway to include the study of Jolly Phonics in teacher trainees’ curriculum, to introduce them to modern teaching trends.
A teacher at the National Nursery Teachers Training Centre, (NNTCC), Barbara Gafifi, advised teachers to use concrete objects for identification when teaching jolly phonics.
She sais for instance ‘the teacher should go to the class with an orange when teaching the letter ‘o’ instead of using a flash card with the letter ‘o’ written on it.
She said this will better aid the child to understand and memorise what is being taught. Mrs Gafifi encouraged owners of schools to embrace the new teaching method for phonics.
An educationist Henry Yentumi, who brought Chris Jolly to the country, tasked corporate organisations to complement government’s efforts at introducing the teaching method in basis schools across the country.