Many children live in the municipality of Ebenfurth, about fifty percent of whom have foreign roots. All together they speak more than ten different languages. In light of this, a multilingual children's library was built where, once a month, multilingual story times are held for kindergarten and elementary school children. An annual reading motivation project, ‘We make our own book’ allows students in the first two elementary school classes to write an animal story or their own family history, first in their mother tongue, and then in a second, chosen language. The collaboration between kindergartens, elementary schools, bookstores, community, parents and grandparents is working.
Reading can be Hazardous to your Stupidity – a Reading Motivation Project in Ebenfurth
1,000 Euro Prize 2012
Region: Lower Austria
Sector: Civil Society / Social Economy
Fields of action: Community development, Kindergarten education, Migration
Project owner: KulturBauStelle- Verein zur Förderung interkultureller Zusammenarbeit
Responsible person: Hubert Lammerhuber
It seems easy and entirely logical. All first languages are afforded the same respect. There are multiple opportunities to be read to together with others, to read alone and to write. Each story is allowed to play a role, regardless of where it may originate geographically. Without proper acquisition of a native language, learning a second or third language is unlikely, and learning comes easier in an environment that fosters esteem. In Ebenfurth all the relevant groups seem to have joined forces and put together just such a comprehensive package, which is wonderful. We wish to award it a prize, both in itself and for its role as a model.