To survive and get on at work and life, we all need to have a decent level of reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.

Your ULR can arrange English courses for you that will cover all those area. We are all more confident in some areas than others. Don’t worry – you will have a friendly initial assessment to find out your strengths and identify any gaps. Your learning will be tailored to your personal needs. Adult English and maths qualifications are called Functional Skills. Adults enjoy them because they are relevant to everyday situations and practical not theoretical. They are also free of charge.



Did you know that 1 in 6 adults struggle with reading? You shouldn’t worry if you or your mates are in that number. English classes are adult friendly and you will learn some tips and techniques to help you come on in leaps and bounds. Good reading skills change lives. It helps adults to:

  • Understand written instructions and information at work and the wider world
  • Enjoy reading with the kids
  • Read for personal enjoyment
  • Find out information for yourself and not rely on others
  • and much more besides!!



Make reading fun

Some people say they find books scary and intimidating, thinking they are ‘not for them’ or that books are difficult or boring. It is mostly about finding the right book.

Have a go at Quick Reads and promote them to friends and family. Quick Reads sets out to challenge these beliefs and to show that books and reading can be for everyone. Each year they commission big name authors to write short books that are specifically designed to be easy to read. They are the same as mainstream books in every respect but are simply shorter and easier to tackle for adults who are less confident in their reading skills. The books are then sold through major retailers, online booksellers and are loaned from libraries.




Next steps could be Reading Ahead

If you have not read a book in years and find the idea a daunting one, or that reading is boring and not for you.  the Reading Agency have created Quick Reads , these are a selection of short stories written by top authors such as Linda La Plant and Andy McNab, they have been written especially for the Reading Agency to help get people back into reading and they cost as little as £1 to buy.





Good writing skills are an important part of communication and many of us find this doesn’t come easily. Adult English classes will help with the nuts and bolts of writing with a set of tips and techniques to help with things like spelling, punctuation and grammar. This sounds scary, but the focus will be on writing for relevance and the things that matter to each person.

Writing can seem a risky thing – if we aren’t confident, we worry that writing it down reveals our weaknesses. Nothing need be further than the truth.

Unions have made lots of progress in encouraging people to express themselves through writing. Being a more confident writer helps to:

  • Write for a range of audiences – a letter of complaint to school or an email to a friend need different styles
  • Enable people to tell their own story or express their own ideas
  • Fill in forms for work, welfare benefits and all kinds of things
  • Fill in application forms for jobs
  • Help the kids with homework
  • Speaking and Listening

These have been neglected skills in Adult English for too long. It’s a good thing that they are now covered in Functional Skills. Sometimes it’s difficult to express ourselves when we are upset or angry for example. All too often we either say nothing or sound aggressive! For a lot of working people, being able to join in discussions, express an idea or opinion can be the gateway to improved opportunities. Sometimes we have to speak up for others – our children, elderly parents or friends at work.


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