We believe that Nigerian teachers and children come to school with a breadth of knowledge and life experiences, and these are the building blocks of education. Literacy is best achieved if the process of learning reflects children’s imagination, experiences, and needs – in their local language. Reading must be both meaningful and fun.
The ‘literacy crisis’ is widely reported in the Nigerian press and evidenced by statistics. Girls in the North have a particularly low level of literacy. The issues are intricate and complex, partly because Northern Nigeria has a rich history of literacy in akami (Arabic script), and there is a vibrant Islamic educational heritage. Nigeria’s colonial legacy has created a high premium on English as highlighted in Trudell’s 2018 British Council/UNICEF report, Language and Education in Nigeria. Books are often a scarce commodity, and MuKaranta exists to complement initiatives led by USAID, the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and other agencies.