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Guroo Functional Skills

  1. Published by Guroo

  2. Functional Skills

  3. KS 3, 4 and post 16

KS3,4 Professional Review by Stuart Pattison

Your Professional Context
I am a subject leader in a Secondary Special School dealing with students of varying complexities of need from PMLD to students achieving five GCSEs. I teach all subjects across the different abilities. I have taught functional skills in English, Maths and ICT and would use the website with Key Stage 4 pupils mostly as well as with some Year 9 students.

Students’ Usage
Guroo Functional skills is designed to be used by students working independently and it ensures that there is a large amount of support for the learner to be able to do so. It is a web based program and as such can be used both within school and at home. The nature of the functional skills tests mean that it is used individually by students although enterprising teachers will certainly look at using it with groups of students. The introduction to each topic can be used on an interactive whiteboard, especially the videos contained within the site. Guroo have worked hard to ensure that the program is as user-friendly as possible for students, especially the very thorough help section. In addition, features such as the ability to download the tasks as podcasts add another layer of interactivity and immersion for students. It is obvious that Guroo Functional Skills is designed very much for anytime/anywhere learning.

Curriculum Focus
Guroo Functional Skills is designed to meet the requirements of the functional skills standards and works through integrated tasks. These cover a variety of topics which are designed to cover a range of interests for both boys and girls. There are specific tasks for each of English, Maths and ICT as well integrated tasks. Students each have a log on and work through each of the individual tasks, their progress being recorded automatically. This is done through worksheets, quizzes and through student self-evaluation. The teacher is then able to access these and a functional skills profile can be built up for each individual student. Guroo Functional Skills is very much designed to be stand-alone and as such works well. It can be used to deliver a whole topic with all your teaching can be based around it. The well-written and varied topics ensure that there is enough material available that the work does not become repetitive.

Value as a teaching resource
Guroo Functional Skills is incredibly well thought through. It provides a one-stop shop for Functional Skills assessment. Its particular strength is that it focuses on all the levels within the functional skills, not just at Levels one and two as many resources do. The attention to detail throughout means that it is a resource that I would certainly use.

The strongest feature about Guroo Functional Skills is the attention to detail that has been added to the program. The three ways that the profile is put together is an effective touch, especially the weighting that is given to the students’ own opinions, although this will need careful management from teachers to support all students.

Guroo Functional skills is very relevant to teachers and students looking to attain the functional skills standards. It is very much a one-purpose resource and never claims to be anything but and what it does it does very well indeed. It is an interesting and well-resourced program that is very much a time saver for teachers as well as offering an engaging package for students.

Guroo Functional Skills is an online program designed to be a one-stop solution for teaching functional skills at Entry Levels one, two and three as well as Levels one and two. It is designed for students to work on individually, with a profile of their skills built up over time. This profile takes into account the students’ own opinions of their progress as well, which is a well thought through and effective feature. There is a great deal of information available for the teacher and it is easy for the teacher to see where students are excelling as well as where they need support. The tasks are well-designed and ensure that the skills are revisited several times to ensure complete mastery of them. The tasks that the students complete are engaging and cover a variety of real world topics. Guroo Functional Skills is an excellent resource and it is obvious that it will continue to develop building on already solid foundations.