Volkswagen Community Trust

Ikhwezi Lomso Montesorri School

08 December 2017

The R4.5 million Ikhwezi Lomso Early Childhood Development centre opened its doors to the Uitenhage community in January 2011 with funds for its construction contributed by the Volkswagen Community Trust and employees at VWSA. The school became a Montesorri based early childhood development centre in 2014.

So what is Montesorri? Montessori is a method of education that is based on self-directed activity, hands-on learning and collaborative play. Every material in a Montessori classroom supports an aspect of child development, creating a match between the child’s natural interests and the available Children can learn through their own experiences and at their own pace. Children make creative choices in their learning, while the classroom and the teacher offer age-appropriate activities to guide the process. Children work in groups and individually to discover and explore knowledge of the world and to develop their maximum potential.

As part of introducing this method of teaching, Ikhwesi Lomso also had to equip and train their teachers. There are two main aims for this training programme:

• To ensure that there is a pool of Montessori trained teachers at the school

• To possibly set up the additional trained teachers in their own schools and in so doing to ensure quality ECD programs in the community.

The first group of teachers started in June 2015 with five student teachers. They completed their final teaching practice at the end of May 2017 and will be submitting their portfolios of evidence to the relevant SETA for verification. A second group of student teachers all from the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro started in June 2016. The course which stretches over 2 years will see this second group finishing their course in June 2018. The training is presented on-site in Uitenhage by a Cape Town based service provider called ELF Montessori.

Thank you Volkswagen Family for making this early childhood development centre possible!