Mother Tongue: A vehicle for accelerating student learning Mozambique’s primary schools

February 21st, 2023 | News

Saraiva was one of the first teachers in his province in northern Mozambique to conduct experiential bilingual education classes, teaching a group of primary education students from 1999 to 2006. Some of his students became teachers and are ensuring that children continue to learn in their mother languages.

From October to December of 2022, Saraiva participated in the book development workshop organized by World Education and its partners on behalf of the USAID SABER program to write school books in Emakhuwa, his native language, for grades 5 and 6.

Saraiva is one of several Mozambicans engaged in advocacy activities to expand bilingual education through a campaign launched on February 21st by the country’s Minister of Education and Human Development, Carmelita Namashulua. The campaign aims to provide students the opportunity to learn in their mother tongues, which is proven to enhance literacy.

The goal of the campaign, integrated in the USAID SABER program, is to strengthen the country’s bilingual education strategy to improve learning outcomes in primary education.

SABER will reach 2,407,362 learners in 21 districts in the Zambezia and Nampula provinces who are learning to read and write in their native languages with a subsequent transition to Portuguese, the country’s official language.

World Education in Mozambique organized celebrations for International Mother Language Day in 3 regions, with exhibitions and lectures on the importance of the mother tongue for accelerating student learning.

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