"Special time starts with me"
During a routine support visit to Mfesane, Puseletso Mofokeng spoke to some parents participating in the book-sharing training. It's amazing to hear how this simple initiative can promote self-awareness about parenting practices.
Nozuko Nkunzana shared her how the programme has boosted her confidence to share books with her child.
"Before, when my daughter was little, every time she had a reading task from school she would ask me to assist her by reading with her. Most of the time her reading would be in Afrikaans and I cannot read in Afrikaans. So I would avoid her so that she would not know that I am unable to assist her.
Now with the book-sharing programme [with my son], I understand that I don't have to read word by word from the book instead I have the freedom to create my own story, in my own words, from my imagination. My son can also formulate his own story by following his imagination and this becomes a rich conversation we engage in together. I am able to learn more about my son and he is able to know me better as his mother. I am determined to try book-sharing with him every day, with him.
I want to correct what I had done in past with my daughter with him."
Everyn Wales shared her thoughts on how her book-sharing experience with her child is affected by her mood and ability to engage fully in the activity.
"What is important for me is to create a special time in me first. What I mean is, special time starts with me. I need to ask myself:
'Am I in a good space to book-share with my child?'
'Am I ready to actively share a book with my child, to be excited, to have fun, to show love, to respond positively and to support him without discouraging him, without correcting him harshly.'
'Am I ready to make sure that I don’t forget he is a child and that children learn by making mistakes.'
I realise now that special time is not just a routine for my child to do book-sharing. It is also a reminder for me that I need to create a warm environment for my child to enjoy book-sharing as children learn from people who love them and respect them."