Adult Literacy, Functional English, and GCSE Resources

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I saw this guide on the BBC website and thought it would be suitable for my Level 1 learners.  This text clearly has a limited shelf-life but is very topical and gives us a chance to discuss democracy as part of British values.  It is quite a detailed comprehension and I have included some Level 1 Reformed Functional Skills Reading questions e.g. explaining apostrophe use.  Whilst not expressly a Level 2 text, it does give a chance to discuss issues of fact, opinion and bias.

Editor's note

Level
Level 1
English
FE L1.9 Identify & understand the main points, ideas & details
FE L1.14 Understand organisational and structural features and use them to locate relevant information (e.g. index, menus, subheadings, paragraphs) in a range of straightforward texts
Context
News, Politics & Government items

Fourteen questions related to Remembrance Day (topics include WW1, WW2 ration books,  Korean War, war poetry, etc.). Use as a traditional paper-based quiz or an IT based investigation. Learners could work individually or in teams / small groups. One way of approaching the quiz would be to see what the class as a whole can answer from their general knowledge before moving on to internet research. 

Level
Entry Level 2
Entry Level 3
Level 1
Level 2
English
General literacy / English
ICT
Finding and selecting information
General
Generic resources for literacy, numeracy and beyond
Context
History, culture, museums, libraries

This resource is based on the DfES ESOL Skills for Life E2 recording 'Asking where things are'. It gives exam practice questions (C&G style) in the first section and in the second section an activity to enable learners to tune in to the sounds of English. The first section can be completed in class and the second at home or the whole sheet can be given for homework. Listening development at home enables learners to listen as often as they wish and tune in until they hear the text more clearly.

Level
Entry Level 1
Entry Level 2
English
E1.2 Identify and extract the main information from short statements and explanations
E2.1 Identify and extract the main information and detail from short explanations
ESOL
ESOL Lr/E2.2a Listen for detail
ESOL Lr/E2.3c Listen for a specific purpose

An additional news story to go with Maggie's great E3 Firework Safety reading & spelling resource.  Use her Fireworks:  the Law page as Text A and then there are two pages of L1-L2 comprehension (I have a mixed class and thus needed something at a higher level). Focus is on general comprehension (main points & detail) but organisational and language features are also covered.

Editor's note

Level
Level 1
English
FE L1.9 Identify & understand the main points, ideas & details
FE L1.14 Understand organisational and structural features and use them to locate relevant information (e.g. index, menus, subheadings, paragraphs) in a range of straightforward texts
FE READING analyse texts
Context
News, Politics & Government items

I wrote this resource to familiarise myself with the new Reformed Entry Level 3 reading and spelling content. As a revision or assessment tool it would be particularly useful around October half term time (i.e. just before Bonfire Night). It can also be used as a springboard for general discussion about fireworks and Bonfire Night.

Level
Entry Level 3
English
FE E3.8 Read correctly words designated for Entry Level 3
FE E3.9 Identify, understand & extract main points & ideas in/from texts
E3.10 Identify different purposes of straightforward texts
FE E3.11 Use strategies to find meaning of words e.g. dictionary, context, word types
FE E3.12 Understand organisational features & use them to locate relevant information
FE E3.14 Form irregular plurals
FE E3.16 Use 1st, 2nd & 3rd letters to sequence words alphabetically
FE E3.17 Spell correctly words designated for Entry Level 3
Context
Health and safety
News, Politics & Government items

Reformed Functional English assessments include group discussion at all levels beyond Entry 1.  This useful, 3 page planner can be used (with varying amounts of teacher support) from E2 to L2. Covers everything from choosing a topic, jotting down initial ideas, and making extended contributions. Also describes the different roles withing a discussion and useful phrases for each role.

With detailed Functional English mapping.   

Level
Entry Level 2
Entry Level 3
Level 1
Level 2
English
E2.6 Make appropriate contributions to simple group discussions with others about a straightforward topic
E3.6 Make relevant contributions to group discussions about straightforward topics
E3.7 Listen to and respond appropriately to other points of view, respecting conventions of turn-taking
FE L1.7 Use appropriate phrases / registers & adapt contributions to take account of audience / purpose / medium
FE L1.8 Respect turn-taking rights of others during discussions, using appropriate language for interjection
FE L2.8 Make relevant and constructive contributions to move discussion forward
FE L2.10 Interject & redirect discussion using appropriate language & register
ESOL
ESOL Engage in discussion

Five large A4 templates for web page, letter, article, email and a speech/talk.  They can be used in a variety of ways depending upon learner levels and lesson objectives. E.g. E1-E2 students can discuss and decide upon the text type and/or where they might see such document, E2-E3 learners can use them to plan or draft work. At L1 they could be displayed onscreen as a brief reminder to use different layouts for different purposes or for reading revision (of organisational features).

Level
Entry Level 2
Entry Level 3
Level 1
English
FE E3.20 Use appropriate format and structure when writing straightforward texts, including the appropriate use of headings and bullet points
FE L1.24 Use format, structure and language appropriate for audience and purpose
FE E3.12 Understand organisational features & use them to locate relevant information
FE L1.14 Understand organisational and structural features and use them to locate relevant information (e.g. index, menus, subheadings, paragraphs) in a range of straightforward texts

Delightful reading and writing tasks based on a very short text originally written for a motorbike-loving learner who had difficulties decoding and distinguishing between long and short vowel sounds. Includes comprehension questions and spelling / punctuation tasks. Fully mapped to the reformed Entry 1 Functional English content. This includes detailed phonic breakdown of the reading text.

Level
Entry Level 1
English
FE E1.8 Read correctly words designated for Entry Level 1
FE E1.9 Read simple sentences containing one clause
FE E1.10 Understand a short piece of text on a simple subject
FE E1.11 Punctuate simple sentences with capital letter & full stop
FE E1.12 Use capital letter for pronoun ‘I’ and proper nouns
FE E1.13 Use lower-case letters when there is no reason to use capital letters
FE E1.15 Spell correctly words designated for Entry Level 1
Context
Motor vehicles & Transport

These two lessons explore the Windrush Scandal. 

The video gives an opportunity to listen for gist and detail, and is followed by a focus on sentence stress and intonation.

The article gives an opportunity for learners to analyse the purpose of the text and look at persuasive techniques, and is accompanied by a vocabulary from context exercise.

Level
Level 1
Level 2
GCSE L1-5
English
FE L2.1 Identify relevant information from extended explanations or presentations
FE L2.2 Follow narratives and lines of argument
FE L2.11 Identify the different situations when the main points are sufficient and when it is important to have specific details
FE L1.13 Use reference materials & appropriate strategies for a range of purposes, inc. to find word meanings
FE L1.17 Read and understand a range of specialist words in context
FE L2.14 Understand the relationship between textual features and devices, and how they can be used to shape meaning for different audiences and purposes
GCSE Reading A1 (a) Identify and interpret
GCSE Reading A2 Analyse language & structure
ESOL
ESOL Lr/L1.1a Extract information from texts of varying genre, e.g. radio, TV
ESOL Lr/L1.2e Listen for phonological detail
ESOL Lr/L1.6b Follow a discussion without participating e.g. on TV
ESOL Lr/L2.1a Extract information from extended texts in a non-face-to-face context, e.g. radio
ESOL Lr/L2.2a Listen to a narrative or conversation
ESOL Lr/L2.2e Listen for phonological detail
ESOL Rw/L1.2a
ESOL Rt/L1.2a Know how language and other textual features are used to achieve different purposes
ESOL Rw/L2.3a
ESOL Rt/L2.2a Identify the purposes of a wide range of texts, whether inferred or explicitly stated
Context
News, Politics & Government items

This resource was created as a way to focus my learners on one person in a larger story. I believe it is a great way to get them used to using the Who, What, Why, When and Where writing method creatively. It is especially good for planning activities.

Editor's note

Although Functional English does not include creative / fiction writing this resource is still useful for general E3 and L1 planning and writing practice, and (for L2 students) as preparation for GCSE.

Level
Entry Level 3
Level 1
Level 2
English
Functional English - writing
FE WRITING Clarity, cohesion, length and detail