Explain How to Embed Functional Skills Into Your Specialist Area

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Task 5

Explain ways to embed elements of functional skills in your specialist area. Final draft.

The specialist area within which I work is delivering Key and Functional Skills. Therefore, the main focus is on English and maths. The challenge I have is less about embedding Functional Skills, and more about encouraging learners to apply the skills they are learning within life, learning and work. The learners I work with are those who did not achieve grade C or above in their GCSE English and or maths, and many of them struggle with these subjects due to a lack of interest or due to low ability. Therefore, the challenge for me is to teach the skills they need in a way that is interesting and meaningful, so that they are able to learn and retain the skills and apply them beneficially.

In order to enhance the learning experience, I try to pitch my teaching style so that it is different to what the learners have been used to previously at school. In my opinion, ‘school-style’ teaching methods have not worked for the majority of these learners, and so I need to try a different ‘tactic.’ Within my lessons, I use an informal style of teaching, and try to incorporate some fun into the lessons. I also look at what subject areas the learners are interested in, and what social interests they may have, and encourage them to apply the skills they are learning to these interests, so they can begin to see the value of learning maths and English skills.

An example of embedding maths and English into Hairdressing and vice versa, is the use of measuring equipment and ratios. In Hairdressing, it is important that a stylist is able to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on a tube of tint when colouring a client’s hair. This involves reading and understanding the instructions properly, accurately measuring amounts of tint and peroxide, and also mixing them using the appropriate ratio, to achieve the desired result. In teaching these maths skills, I would firstly try to...
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