• We all have the right to write. Anything we can say, we can write.
  • We all can write well if we are emotionally involved in our topic and our purpose. We find our voices there. Writing is learning and discovering. It develops best in real-life situations, with the instructor intervening in the writing process.
  • We learn to read by having written. We learn from our experiences, including experiences with oral and written texts. We should expose ourselves to many texts, and often do free-choice reading.
  • We learn best in collaborative, diverse, and supportive communities. We all learn in our own ways, and our home cultures affect how we interpret our experiences.
  • Moving through the writing process can produce powerful writing. We gain more ownership over our writing if we master the writing process.
  • Writing is a strong tool for developing critical thinking. Challenging our thinking as we write in collaborative settings, develops academic language proficiency.
  • We teach equitably:  not less, but more to the poor. We recognize our children's home communities and ancestral cultures as our educational partners.
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Please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if your questions about the Sentinel English Language Institute (SELI) are not answered here.

Is SELI a school? SELI is a project-based educational organization.

What does SELI's facility look like? SELI occupies a 1000 sq ft space in Tengbeh Town which consists of a 36' x 9' workshop room and three satellite classrooms; a 1,500 item library; and a teaching-resource room. The classrooms are sometimes used as activity areas of a single workshop and sometimes as self-contained rooms.

Where does SELI carry out its activities? Some are carried out in the facility, some in the large compound and "bafa" outside the facility, and some in other organizations and schools.

Who teaches at SELI? The director is a U.S.-qualified ESL teacher and school administrator, with more than 30 years' experience working in Sierra Leone.

Is all instruction at SELI charitable, and free of charge? In addition to its charitable work, SELI offers private ESL tutoring for adults. These classes serve as income to support the services that are offered by SELI free of charge.

What are SELI's funding sources? SELI's primary source of funding is donations from individuals. The director also conducts professional development and offers private ESL tutoring for adults. In June, 2010 SELI published Young Writers club student writing in the book, Fostering Young Writers in Sierra Leone, ed. by Jacqueline Leigh, and all proceeds from this book support SELI writing programs. SELI has also received grants from the MacEwan Global Education Fund, the International Reading Association, U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section in Freetown and two nonprofit organizations, Kids City and the Childhood Foundation.

How can I contribute? SELI is a U.S. 501 (c) (3) public charity, EIN #26-0595093, and donations are U.S. tax deductible. Please send checks in U.S. funds, made payable to the Sentinel English Language Institute, to our U.S. address. For other methods of payment, please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Last Updated on Thursday, 11 October 2012 13:45
  • Teach Your Mother Language!

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    Come at 4 pm on February 21st, 2013, International Mother Language Day at 14F Clarke St, Tengbeh Town to volunteer to be a Sierra Leone language tutor. more

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