Department Head of Languages – Mr JE Heine


Most of us know the importance of reading.  But nowadays digging down and saying why reading is so important can be harder than we think!  Here are some reasons why reading is so important:

  • Reading improves your vocabulary
  • Books make you wiser
  • Readers have higher incomes
  • Books can help reduce stress
  • Reading books builds your reading fluency
  • Reading increases your general knowledge
  • You’ll become a better conversationalist
  • People who read novels live longer
  • Reading maintains cognitive function
  • Reading prevents Alzheimer’s disease
  • Reading is motivational
  • It can increase empathy
  • It can improve your sleep
  • It can help you improve your focus

Clearly reading can improve your life by helping your cognitive development, preventing cognitive decline. It can also make us more empathetic and improve our confidence. This year has been tough on us all. It has, however, provided us with opportune moments to immerse ourselves in the wonderful world of fantasy and reality through books. It provided us with time to reflect and improve in every way we could, emerging stronger than we started.

If there is one thing that the past 50 years (especially this year) has taught us, it is that change is inevitable and that we should be able to adapt to any situation. And adapt we have! Following feedback received from parents at the 2015 Annual General Meeting, the School Governing Body began a process to review the language policy with the objective of introducing an African language as an additional First Additional Language alongside Afrikaans in 2016. Next year we would have successfully rolled out our isiZulu language programme throughout the foundation and intermediate phase, allowing the learners to choose between Afrikaans or isiZulu from grade 4 to 6.

Throughout the years, our adaptable Language Department has gone from strength to strength, improving our methods and allowing all our learners the opportunity to grow and develop. With our library’s expansion to accommodate more books for our learners to enjoy, and our continuous efforts to acquire more and current resources, learners were assisted with reading and comprehension through which they could develop holistically.

We introduced many language activities for the learners and parents to enjoy. Just to name a few: Spelling Bee, Battle of the Books, Drop Everything and Read, Grapevine Newspaper, Book Club, World Read Aloud Day, Speech Festivals, Olympiads, Creative writing competitions, Book Character Day, Career Day and SACEE language challenges.

Hopefully, our situation changes soon, allowing us to continue our strive for excellence, but in the meantime we will adapt and continue to YIELD NOT!