Book worms: Philippi learners ace Arts Centre book quiz

Learners compete to show they can read for meaning

By Qaqamba Falithenjwa

28 November 2023

Hlelo Kana, a grade 4 learner at Samora Machel Primary School, won second place at the Philippi Arts Centre’s book quiz on Friday. Photos: Qaqamba Falithenjwa

More than 40 grade 3 and 4 learners from four schools in Philippi competed in this year’s book quiz at the Philippi Arts Centre on Friday.

The organisation partnered with the Ntshona, Zanemfundo, Masivuke and Samora Machel primary schools. Facilitators were sent to each school to build libraries and to help learners to read with understanding.

During the quiz, ten learners from each school were asked to read a page from a children’s isiXhosa book and then tested on how much they had understood.

The three learners who won were from Zanemfundo Primary and Samora Machel Primary schools. Books the learners were quizzed on included Abahlobo Abakhulu and Eli Lilungelo Lam.

Philippi Arts Centre director Lizwi Nyandu, said the Centre employs about 100 facilitators, some working in schools to assist learners with reading and creative arts. They often have to get additional books from the public libraries in Nyanga and Browns Farm.

The Centre was started in 2020 by a group of artists from Philippi who transformed an abandoned property in the area.

It offers visual arts, music production, photography, dance, drama, literacy and other after school programs. It is mostly funded by the Philippi Economic Development Initiative (PEDI), the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sports, the national Department of Sport, Arts and Culture, and Business and Arts South Africa (BASA), Nyandu said.

Learners from Ntshona, Zanemfundo, Masivuke and Samora Machel primary schools in Philippi took part in the book quiz.