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Teaching and learning resources for English, mathematics and ICT

Commercial resources

A web search for functional skills teaching and learning resources, or similar, will suggest links to commercial developments in this area, as well as those produced by the nationally funded programmes.

Other resources

Material from the Functional Skills Support Programme, which closed in 2010, can be found in the National Archive. Note that you have to make sure you are accessing the most recent archive.

Functional Skills in Work-Based Learning – a useful guidance booklet, written in 2010, with sections on introducing functional skills; assessment; placing learners on appropriate programmes; teaching approaches; equality and diversity; staff skills. The document is on the right-hand menu of this link.

Teaching and learning functional mathematics – a pack of resources developed for the functional skills programme, 2008.

The Being functional resource library provides useful information and access to resources. There are filters to enable you to search for topics, subject areas and levels.

The Essential Skills Support Unit has a resource bank of functional skills resources (English and mathematics).

Embedded learning materials provide extensive learner materials and teacher notes exemplifying how English and maths skills can be taught in 27 vocationally focused teaching programmes, such as social care, construction and hairdressing, and for community, health and employability programmes. All materials include the embedded use of ICT, where appropriate, and there is also a set of embedded learning materials specifically focusing on ICT. Developed 2006–10.

Many of the numeracy resources developed by providers as part of the Skills for Life Support Programme in 2009-10 will be relevant to functional mathematics. 

See a workshop and session plan for functional mathematics developed by the London region for the Support for Literacy, Language and Numeracy programme in 2011.

The Key Skills Support Programme, ended in 2008, has a huge amount of useful teaching and learning resources, including materials for English, mathematics and ICT.

Skills for Life learning materials have been nationally developed and provide useful resources for teaching specific English and maths skills. Developed 2003.

Teaching and learning programme: improving learning in mathematics. This resource contains material that aims to develop teachers’ skills in teaching mathematics. It is aimed primarily at teachers of the 16–19 age group, but the material is also useful in an adult learning context.

Teaching and learning programme: improving learning in information technology. This resource contains material that aims to develop teachers’ skills in teaching ICT. It is aimed primarily at teachers of the 16–19 age group, but the material is also useful in an adult learning context.

The Numeracy starter kit has a useful section on preparing for functional maths, with links to various resources.

Find out more about effective teaching and learning, including active learning approaches.

The Being functional site has three CPD modules, each with useful resources, on the following topics:

  • Assessment for learning
  • Embedding functional skills
  • Whole organisation approach

CPD Builders are online resources, developed by EMCETT, which focus on developing the skills required to embed the teaching of functional skills within vocational contexts: 

  • Teaching business
  • Teaching engineering
  • Teaching in the creative and media sector
  • Teaching construction
  • Teaching mathematics
  • Teaching in the society, health and development sector
  • Teaching science
  • Teaching in the land-based sector
  • Teaching information technology

BBC Skillswise and BBC Webwise. While the focus of these materials is literacy, numeracy and ICT, they certainly have a place in functional skills teaching. Also available is Skillswise – Jobskills, which offers practical English and maths skills for work in the private sector, public sector, for self-employment and for finding a new job.