Materials & Tools

Readers in mother tongue for Foundation Phase

Focus: To support literacy in African Languages, the Zenex Foundation, together with the Molteno Institute for Language and Literacy, has incrementally, developed the Vula Bula Series, of graded readers for Grades 1-3 in eight African languages. This Series was informed by sound theoretical and contextual considerations. It contributes to building a strong foundation in home language, based on the principle that this facilitates the acquisition of learning in other languages and subjects.  The Series is underpinned by a phonics approach to literacy and supports CAPS and the key literacy skills to be taught in Foundation Phase. The Vula Bula Series includes readers, a teacher training manual and classroom resources and is available as Open Education Resources at

Learning through Sport Resource Pack

Focus: The resource pack is a teaching tool that uses sport and citizenship issues to facilitate learning in Mathematics, Science and Language. The packs were produced in 2010 by the Zenex Foundation, with Helene Perold and Associates managing the project. They represent an innovative way of integrating learning areas using the 2010 Soccer World Cup as a catalyst to connect learners’ in- and out-of school worlds. The National Department of Education gave an in principle endorsement to the project in July 2009.

The resource pack for learners in Grades 4 - 6 contains a teacher's guide, training manual, poster, board game and three readers. They are intended to be added to classroom libraries, but also provide reading materials for the ‘Drop Everything and Read’ time in line with the National Department’s Foundations For Learning Campaign that seeks to improve literacy in schools.

Understanding Concepts in Mathematics and Science

Focus: A guide for teachers that mediates Mathematics and Science concepts in four languages (isiXhosa, isiZulu, English and Afrikaans). Two editions have been produced: one for GET (Volume 1, 2005) and another for FET (Volume 2, 2009). The books explain core concepts in Mathematics and Science. They are aimed at addressing the lack of an adequate mediation mechanism that empowers teachers to skillfully code-switch between the language of instruction and mother tongue in order to give learners access to key conceptual building blocks in Mathematics and Science education. The material was produced by the Zenex Foundation in association with the Concept Literacy Project. Copies are available from major book academic bookstores or on direct order from Maskew Miller Longman at +27 (0)21 532 6000 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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