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A quick summary

One hundred and fifty schools are selected by the Western Cape Education Department to participate in Growsmart every year. Each school is represented by a team of three learners in Grades 4, 5 and 6. Each year, different learners are chosen to represent their schools in the various competition. Learners who have already competed in Growsmart may not compete again the following year. Each team has a mentor who guides them and helps them prepare for the competition.

There are three levels to the Growsmart competition. All schools compete in Level 1 and the winners of each round advance to Level 2. Eight winners of Level 2 advance to the semi-final, of which five will advance to the final. All competition rounds are held on Saturdays.

Growsmart newspaper

The words used in the Literacy competition are selected from specially-designed Growsmart newspapers. The content of the newspapers is aligned to the curriculum and is approved by the Western Cape Education Department. The participating schools receive Growsmart newspapers for each level of the competition (each participant in Grades 4, 5 and 6 receives the newspapers). Teachers use the newspapers in their daily reading sessions for reading practice and dictionary work, as well as to help contestants prepare for the competition. However, the maths problems in the newspaper are only a guideline of what is asked in the competition.

Level 1

All schools receive the first edition of the Growsmart newspaper to prepare for the first part of the competition:lLevel 1. This level runs over five Saturdays. There are five competition rounds, with five schools competing in each round. The winner of each round advances to the next level.

Level 2

All schools receive the second edition of the Growsmart newspaper to prepare for the first part of the competition: level 2. The winning teams from level 1 use the first and the second editions to prepare for level 2. This level works similarly to the previous level, with the winning schools from each round advancing to the semi-final.

The semi-final

All schools receive the third edition of the Growsmart newspaper. The eight victorious teams must study all three editions to prepare for the final. The round is divided into semi-final and final rounds.


Five teams will compete to determine the winning team, as well as the second and third places.