Implemented by the Department of Basic Education in partnership with UNICEF, the LEGO Foundation and Cotlands Learning Around You is an innovative online training, accredited with the South African Council of Educators (SACE).
The programme will equip 150 000 professionals to effectively implement play-based learning based on the National Curriculum Framework.
The initial testing phase has been completed and the programme went live on Thursday at www.playsa.org.
The Council for Education Ministers (CEM) launched this free P.L.A.Y. online in-service training programme, with the aim to provide in-service training to 42 000 early childhood development practitioners, 23 000 Grade R educators and 85 000 Grade 1 to 3 educators over the next two years.
Highlighting the involvement of government, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said the foundations laid in the early learning and the foundation phase through play, will have an impact on the schooling careers of children up to matric and beyond.
Play is learning in the early years, and the starting point for future engineers, doctors, teachers, amongst others.
“This model of in-service training that we are launching today has all the potential to be a game changer in the manner in which the we can shape a large part of in-service training programme to reach all educators – even in the most remote areas,” said Dr Mamiki Maboya, Deputy Director-General for Curriculum Policy, Support and Monitoring at the Department of Basic Education.
The programme requires an online registration that can be done through any mobile device or computer, which is then followed by a five hour face-to-face orientation session.
These will be conducted throughout the country, utilising, amongst others, the Department of Basic Education’s Teacher Development Centres as resources.
This will be followed by online training that will include theory, practice and assessment.
Upon completion, the trainees will receive a certificate that will earn them Continuing Professional Teacher Development (CPTD) points from SACE thus linking it to formal recognition and professional development.