Dealing with Entry Levels

The problem with resources for Entry Level Functional Skills is the ‘real-life’ aspect. Consider these activities which all require Functional Skills:

  • Applying for a passport
  • Shopping for groceries
  • Booking a holiday
  • Applying for a job
  • Finding a place to live

Source materials for Entry Levels must be as equally authentic as those used at Levels 1 and 2. The problem is that few printed materials will be at these levels. You will need to use a variety of authentic materials to help build and apply your students’ Functional Skills but, unless you are able to purchase ready-differentiated resources, you will have to simplify texts accordingly. This may be time-consuming but it is essential. In fact, devising source materials that not only appeal to the interests of your students but are also accessible to them can be incredibly rewarding.

Unless you know where to look, it can be difficult to know where to start with simplification. There is an incredibly useful leaflet with lots of sensible ideas about how to design, write and produce printed information so that it is easier to read. The link to it is here: shop.niace.org.uk/making-reading-easier It’s a good idea to use a copy of this leaflet together with the Functional Skills standards at your required level to devise accessible source materials for your own learners.