The Teach a friend to read

mother tongue competition

open to all you super-brainy Sierra Leoneans

runs from 27.04.2021 – 27.05.2022


The prize of 1,000,000 Leones will be awarded to the 7 competitors

who produce the best mother tongue 4-page teaching-reading charts

in either Fula or Kono, Koranko, Limba, Mende, Susu or Temne.


Your mother tongue chart must be based on the approach used in the

4-page Krio teaching-reading chart. 


Krio with akara & Jins.jpg
Krio page 1 - 4 jpeg_2.jpg
Krio page 1 - 4 jpeg_3.jpg
Krio page 1 - 4 jpeg_4.jpg


Send your mother tongue chart as a pdf by email on 27.05.2021 -

- but not before -  to

Include your name, age, address and phone number in the email.


Your prize and certificate will be presented at a special award ceremony. Watch this space!


Here's how:


Use only Roman letters to adapt the Krio chart to your mother tongue -

Extra African characters are confusing and a burden for a new reader.   

They create problems when typing and printing in the Age of Computers.

The eye and brain adjust easily to slight changes in vowel sounds:

for instance  in English  ow...own... or  red...rely

Ng  as in sing for instance:

does not require another new character for the new reader to learn.


Use only phonics for letters = start-sounds of words. 

The guide and posters on the website show you how to pronounce phonics through stuttering by the following method:

Pretend to stutter with these words:

an apple   a...a...a  apple    bat and ball   b...b...b  bat and ball      

curly cat   c...c...c  curly cat    duck   d...d...d  duck

(We NEVER say:  ay, bee, see, dee, ee,, vee, double-you, ex, why, zed !)


Mother tongue chart page 1

- Use everyday objects for the poster.

- Objects must be the same shape as their phonics letters.   

- Use either morphed photos or drawings.

Study our unique Krio and English phonics alphabet posters, to see how we solved awkward problems.


Mother tongue chart page 2

- Instructions should be in your mother tongue.

- Words with images must be familiar to all your new readers


Mother tongue chart page 3

- Design fun ways of learning letter blends which produce one sound, eg   ch  sh  th

- For the song lyrics must be very familiar to all your new readers.


Mother tongue chart page 4

- Jokes and sayings or a traditional story – let your imagination run wild to make learning to read fun for all your new readers.

Further information:

Teach a friend to read, teach your mum, your dad, your bro' or anyone you know

Illiteracy lies at the heart of unemployment, crime, poverty

and the world's great divide

In the USA 40 million+ adults struggle with reading.

60% of USA prisoners can't read and 85% of juvenile prisoners struggle.

In Scotland  26.5 % of the population is illiterate.

Half the prison inmates in the UK can't read.                                            

In SL 69% of the male population and 80% of the female population is illiterate.


Now it's time for ALL Sierra Leoneans of ALL ages to lead the way to end illiteracy with our unique, one-with-one phonics

Teach a friend to read approach -

with same-shape images for letters (start-sounds of words)

No training or qualifications for reading-coaches required.

Anyone of any age who CAN read just picks up their mother tongue phonics reading-chart -  reads the instructions and off they go

to teach their friends, relatives, neighbours or fellow prisoners.


Mother tongue must come FIRST:

Learning in the mother tongue first is crucial, so that the new reader's brain does not have to translate. The eye and brain must be totally focussed on de-coding, on learning the building blocks of reading,

ie on learning that the squiggles and blobs on the page are letters, which represent the start-sounds of words, which form whole words when blended together.


Krio is the perfect language in which to learn to read and write.

It is phonetic. Words are always spelled egzaktli as they are said.

Sierra Leoneans for whom Krio is the mother tongue are blessed.       

We word-wobblers ( dyslexics) are sooooo envious.

English is the hardest language in the world in which to learn to read.

No other language has inconsistencies, contradictions and exceptions.

The only spelling rule in the English language is that there are no rules. That is why learning to read in English requires the unique 90-page long

Teach a friend to read guide.