From 2021 Pecanwood Preparatory is also offering Setswana as first additional language. Students can now choose between Afrikaans, Setswana or Zulu as first additional languages.
“ I am excited about this, and to note that Pecanwood College is not monolithic but a multicultural and diverse institution that caters for all stakeholders. This is in line with the dictates of the new world order. It serves to broaden our children’s view of the world and expand their horizons,” Beatrice says. She uses graphic, simplistic and practical methods to teach the language. “ I believe that language is the greatest of all human inventions, be it gesture or otherwise. I am Motswana and have a passion for Setswana, the language.”
Beatrice believes additional languages enhances a child’s life and may foster a love of languages. “It may even turn them into linguists, a viable career option.” She believes learning a new language is made easier by interaction with easy concepts and through daily use. “Brevity is the soul of wit!”
“It is very exciting. The community of Pecanwood and surrounds are going to be very happy. There has been an interest in Setswana for some time now. Additional languages in schools are very important for the children to enjoy studying and learning languages that they are familiar with, and gaining more knowledge and understanding of their own culture and others. It also creates more positive attitudes and less prejudice towards people who are different,” Nomusa says.
“Learning a language is easy, provided one enjoys learning, has teachers to support and parents working hand in hand with the school. I let the children in my isiZulu class “act” out the various vocabulary and dialogues, which they love.”
“I advise children to choose a language they are interested in and use it to communicate with their friends.”
“I am excited about the new languages at Pecanwood Preparatory as this is long overdue. Children are generally keen to learn more and they enjoy having more options to choose from. Setswana is many children’s home language at our school and they are looking forward to learning more of their own language and culture, says Lize.
Lize feels it is difficult for learners to learn languages they have not grown up with. Learning a new language is all about repeated exposure and practise in order to perfect a skill. There is little to no exposure of our additional languages outside of the school environment.” So, what methods do you use to teach languages children are not familiar with? “Constant translations can become tedious, although it is the best proven way to build the children’s understanding of the language.” She tries to incorporate vocabulary games in daily lessons to make it more fun.