It’s now normal to regularly receive a range of information updates, enewsletters, tweets, social media posts, blog posts, and emails. Each one offering information, advice, snippets, suggested follow-up actions, or best ways’ to do something. Each one, prodding us to tweak our knowledge and practice.
AT the heart of the matter for us – LLN and VET meeting place – is Foundation Skills. This post presents the top 5 recently received ‘grabs’ from various sources that speak to foundation skills
- Foundation Skills (defined by the National Foundation Skills Strategy NFSS) = LLN skills (ACSF) + Employability skills (CSfW)
- ACSF = Australian Core Skills Framework
- CSfW = Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework
(1) A Book
This book is written for people undertaking further study in VET teaching and is written from the perspective of ‘what does a VET teacher need to know?’.
Don’t brush this aside – each chapter holds content relevant to each of us, with contextual information, current developments, pedagogy considerations (where relevant) and reflective questions. The exploration of VET teaching practice is taken from a wide angled lens, presenting constructive information and strategic advice.
Chapter 6: Language Literacy and Numeracy in VET Teaching, was written by Keiko Yasukawa, a long-standing and influential Australian leader and researcher in the LLN domain, currently based at University of Technology Sydney. Keiko has much more to say, but these insights or questions are the pick for this post
P98 As a VET practitioner ……………..“you actually have much to offer in the practice of integrating LLN into your teaching because it is the LLN demands of the your vocational discipline and work practices that the students are learning.”
P101 There are multiple literacy practices involved with completing a course (Ivanic et al, 2009)
- Literacy practice for becoming and being a student
- Literacy practice for learning content
- Literacy practice for assessment
- Literacy practice for the workplace
P103 Reflective question: How explicitly were you taught about these different practices? How does it feel when they are not explicitly taught and you cannot figure it out yourself?
P104 The basis of the ’embedded’ or ‘integrated’ approach is …………. focus on making the LLN that the learners and workers encounter explicit and teach it to all of the students.
P107 A Reflective question: Whose interests are at stake when I am making decisions about my approaches to practice?
(2) A website
If you are looking for a resource with videos to inspire or encourage learners pondering what vocational course? or direction? SkillsOne has ‘Hundreds of Videos about getting a trade or skill.
Videos can be helpful for showing what’s involved with the work, and the underpinning foundation skills. The videos are from different sources, so are different lengths. Some a ‘bites’, and others more detailed.
If you have access to a TV – search the Channels tab for TV programs featuring specific trades and skills, or future developments.
(3) AN EBulletin
Teacher | ACER updates are sent each week. Although they are directed at school teachers, we share a lot in common when it comes to teaching/training/delivering instruction.
Our goal is to reveal the foundation skills at the heart of the task, and know if the delivery approach was effective for the learner:
- Two of the biggest blockers ………are fear of failure and fear of hidden criteria – they’re not entirely sure what you’re looking for. So, if we can make it really clear……..then they’ll move forward. (21/5).
- Taking an inquiry approach to the effectiveness of your teaching. Ask the learners, what kind of feedback helps you? Many reply – ‘Step by step guidance’. Some learners will need more detail – what seems to be obvious to some learners, may remain a mystery to others.
(4) An infographic
- The core skill Learning underpins the development of all foundation skills (ACSF and CSfW).
- Learning strategies are interlinked, often invisibly, within training/delivery instruction and support.
- Delivery or instruction strategies are critical to facilitating learning.
Enjoy this simple Infographic; nothing new. a simple metaphor to tempt deeper reflection!
In your context, how are learners assisted to learn, so they can build and develop necessary foundation skills?
(5) A Blog
The range of strategies to assist learners to build and develop foundation skills is vast. The range of strategies to build specific foundation skills eg Reading or Numeracy , is also vast. Generally we build skills over time.
It’s easy to be locked into the same information bubbles feeding our professional skills and knowledge. What are the impacts of consuming what comes in through the same sources over and over? Have you progressed with confidence to approach or embrace foundation skills within your practice?
Jane Hart’s (C4LPT) framework captures the variety of ways a trainer might continue to evolve their professional expertise.
With foundation skills in mind, where do you go to find:
- what you need to know NOW?
- what is NEW ?
- what’s NEXT on the horizon?