35% of Panamanian students reach the minimun reading skills. That is to say, they don't understand what they read (PISA). Our country also has a low English language proficiency, even though we study the language for 10 years (EF EPI 2020).
We interview their parents to get familiar with each member needs and preferences. We read in Spanish for 2 months and then switch to English. We have biweekly meetings to help children and teenagers build a positive relationship with books, reading and language learning using:
• Shared reading and read alouds. We also encourage their parents to read with them at home.
• Graded readers books and other accessible reading formats like: easy reading (Lectura Fácil), audiobooks, large print books and electronic publications.
• Edtech apps like Flipgrid, Kahoot, Learning Apps, Wordwall and Padlet to help them improve their vocabulary, grammar, speaking and writing skills.
• Reading and Social Storytelling (Pedagogía del libro hablado) developed by María Hequiz (Argentina)
• Short films appreciation workshops.
• If needed, personalized tutoring.
We keep a close communication with their parents for feedback and also help them apply some reading comprehension strategies at home.
Due to COVID, we are meeting virtually and this is allowing us to reach rural and urban areas in our country. Next year, we will also meet in person thanks to the Local Cultural Center.
Get in touch with Gabriela Romero at: firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to share and learn from other professionals and projects.