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Late start but still learning

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Manasseha Mohammed,
Level 3, International School, Westmoorings


Have you ever been asked by your best friend to spell something and you’ve had to change the topic? 


Well this is my dilemma, often too many times. I often blamed my parents for this but with my mother working to put food on the table and a father who beats you, who will want to speak to him? 


I never thought the future would have held so many moments where you would be ashamed when you couldn’t read something. 


I never had any major problem at school because we worked in groups. I also learned that whenever you sit among smart people and don’t say anything you too are smart. With this method I came out of school with three passes.


I started to work in a factory right after leaving school. Life was cool—there was nothing to read and no one to ask how to spell anything. Years went by and I had gotten a new job. In this new workplace, my nightmare became a reality—there was always something to be read. 


Most times I worked around that—“no scene” (not a problem)—but the real problem was that you needed some kind of qualification to get any bigger post in this establishment.


One day, I heard about Alta classes on the television. I thought about it for some time until one day I told my mother and asked her what she thought about it. “Go for it,” she said. 


When I went to register I was the youngest person in the room. In my mind I said, “here we go again.” 


I started classes and became more confident in trying to read and spell. I still haven’t told my best friend anything about where I go on a Tuesday and Thursday. 


I hope one day in the future I will be able to help him to spell something. Until then I will continue to walk alone.


Play your part to build literacy. If you have time, volunteer to be an ALTA tutor, a Reading Circle guide or to assist students on the computer. If your time is already booked, sponsor an ALTA student for the year (TT$500). Call 624-ALTA (2582) or e-mail [email protected]


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