A Précis on Negotiating with Learners, Inclusive Learning, Integrating Functional Skills and Communication

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Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector – DTLLS Unit 2 – Planning and Enabling Learning – Level 4
Theory Assignment Part A
Written Assignment – A précis on negotiating with learners, Inclusive learning, Integrating functional skills and communication Paulo do Vale

Introduction
This report focuses on the findings that relate to negotiating with learners, inclusive learning, integrating functional skills into your subject area and communication. Methodology
The research has been carried out by reading of related bibliography (listed at the last page of this assignment) and publications from old and new education government bodies such as the Quality Improvement Agency (QIA) and the Department for Education and Skills (DfES). An internet search proved fruitless so I decided to make use of the printed available material only. Approach

I have gathered the main ideas for this research from the discussions that took place in classroom during the sessions. At home, after reading the books and publications I had available, I went on to select the passages that I considered most relevant and worth of quotation. I have, then, tried to break down the idea contained in those passages with my own words which proved immensely helpful when assimilating and consolidating my understanding of what was cited.

Negotiating with learners
“Goals and targets, usually recorded on the ILP, are best negotiated. This will aid ownership of the targets and create useful discussions to inform the most appropriate targets for the learner” (Wilson 2006, p146). Negotiating with learners means establishing what to achieve, how to do it and when, in a way that best suits teacher and learners and this practice will ensure those targets are actually met. Geoff Petty cites ‘putting the learner and the learning first’ as a value by which teachers must be inspired in order to become effective and make a difference to students’ lives. (PETTY, G. 2004, p529). Putting the learner and learning first requires getting to know the learner as an individual and how learning works for that particular person. Aspects such as course content, its methodology and assessment process need to be flexible enough to allow changes that will accommodate the learners’ particular needs. But negotiating with learners is not limited to one-to-one scenarios. Management of the classroom through control and discipline can also benefit from negotiation between the teacher and the learners as a group. “Ground rules should be agreed by the whole group rather than imposed by you. By showing an interest in their decisions, you are communicating with your learners that they are valued as individuals, who bring useful skills and knowledge to the sessions.” (Gravells & Simpson 2008, p14). Other means to negotiate with learners include induction (Initial assessment), planning and recording learning goals. Initial assessment is the process through which a learner’s skills are identified against a level or levels within the national standards. It aims to place learners in appropriate learning programmes at an appropriate level after a comprehensive diagnostic assessment where several influencing factors are taken into consideration. It is the instance along the learner’s journey into achievement when the learner, the teacher and the curriculum are combined (Wilson 2006, p134). Often considered to be the critical start point, assessment of literacy, language and numeracy will identify strengths and areas for development but a fully detailed learner profile needs to incorporate previous experiences of learning, preferred learning style, learning difficulties, personal circumstances as well as psychological and physical aspects. Gravells & Simpson (2008), assert that “Induction and the initial assessment of your learners could be a key area of your responsibility. By the end of this process both you and your learners should be confident that they are on a programme...
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