You are on page 1of 132

Communication Skills

for Social Care Practice

Contextualised materials for Essential Skills Communication

November 2012


Published by:
Northern Ireland Social Care Council
Floor, Millennium House
19-25 Great Victoria Street

Tel: 028 9041 7600


This resource is free to download as a PDF file from the NISCC website Material within this resource may be reproduced for training
and learning purposes only. Copies can be made available in a range of
different formats by contacting the Communications Team at the above

November 2012

Guidance for use of this Resource
These vocationally contextualised materials are designed to support Essential Skills
tutors and trainers who are delivering Essential Skills Communication to Health /
Social Care workers and students. They are not intended to be used as a set
programme, rather as a resource for tutors, to support the planning and delivery of
programmes suited to the needs of their own particular groups of learners. This
resource should not be the sole source of task materials, since part of the ethos of
essential skills is that the learner should have some choice in their materials for
reading, writing and speaking/listening.

Tutors can adapt the materials to suit the specific needs of their groups. The
resource is suitable for use up to Level 2 Essential Skills Communication.

Appendix 1 contains some information on how the use of these materials can
generate evidence for some specific units in QCF Health and Social Care

Thanks are due to the North West Regional College and Belfast Metropolitan
College for the development of these resources and also for piloting the resources in
their respective courses. They have proven to be successful with feedback from
learners confirming that they developed both in skills and confidence from the
experience. Thanks are also due to employers for recognising the skills need of their
staff and for supporting them to increase their knowledge and skills. Both the
Northern Ireland Social Care Council and UNISON worked in collaboration with both
colleges in supporting the development of this resource. This endeavour has been a
response to the increasing complexity within social care work and increasing
demands on written and verbal communication in carrying out the social care role.
Thanks also are due to CITBNI for pioneering this format for contextualised learning
in communication.

Useful Links

Table of Contents

Guidance for use of this Resource ................................................................................................ 2
Acknowledgements .......................................................................................................................... 2
READING Tasks .............................................................................................................................. 5
Reading Task 1 Texts: Presentation Features ......................................................................... 6
Reading Task 2 - Reading and selecting relevant information: Summarising ...................... 18
Reading Task 3 - Summarising .................................................................................................... 23
Reading Task 4 - Formal and Informal Texts ............................................................................ 25
Reading Task 5 - Reading and Understanding: Skimming; Scanning and Detailed Reading
.......................................................................................................................................................... 26
Reading Task 6 - Types of Texts: Linguistic Features ............................................................. 29
Reading Task 7 - Types of Writing: Writing to Instruct ............................................................. 35
Reading Task 8 - Types of Texts: Persuasive Writing ............................................................. 38
Reading Task 9 - Analysing a Newspaper Article ..................................................................... 40
Reading Task 10 - Reading Images ............................................................................................ 43
Reading Task 11 - Practice for Desktop Task Part 1 ............................................................... 45
WRITING Tasks ............................................................................................................................ 48
Writing Task 1 - Sentences ........................................................................................................... 49
Writing Task 2 - Simple, Compound and Complex Sentences ............................................... 52
Writing Task 3 - Punctuation ........................................................................................................ 54
Writing Task 4 - Apostrophes ....................................................................................................... 64
Writing Task 5 Subject Verb Agreement ................................................................................. 72
Writing Task 6 - Tenses ................................................................................................................ 74
Writing Task 7 Spelling Homophones...................................................................................... 75
Writing Task 8 - Paragraphs ......................................................................................................... 83
Writing Task 9 Mind Mapping.................................................................................................... 91
Writing Task 10 Structuring an Extended Text ....................................................................... 93
Writing Task 11 Proof Read and Revise Writing for Accuracy and Meaning .................... 94
Writing Task 12 Writing and Extended Text: Report on Your Organisation ...................... 96
Writing Task 13 Writing an Essay / Article .............................................................................. 98
Writing Task 14 Formal Letter: Letter of Complaint ............................................................. 104


SPEAKING AND LISTENING Tasks .................................................................................. 109
Speaking and Listening Task 1 - How Well do I Listen? ........................................................ 111
Speaking and Listening Task 2 How Well do I Speak? ...................................................... 113
Speaking and Listening Task 3 - Speaking to Others ............................................................ 115
Speaking and Listening Task 4 - Using the Telephone .......................................................... 116
Speaking and Listening Task 5 - Following Spoken Instructions ......................................... 117
Speaking and Listening Task 6 - Listening for instructions ................................................... 118
Speaking and Listening Task 7 - Team Meetings ................................................................... 120
Speaking and Listening Task 8 - Group Discussion: Sample ............................................... 122
Speaking and Listening Task 9 - Group Discussion: Rate Your Performance Checklist .. 124
Speaking and Listening Task 10 - One Minute Talks ............................................................. 125
Researching Information Using ICT ................................................................................ 127
Appendix 1 - Relevance to QCF H&SC Qualifications ............................................................... 128
Level 2 Certificate in Induction into Adult Social Care ............................................................ 129
Level 2 Diploma in Health and Social Care.............................................................................. 130



We read to know we are not alone.
C. S. Lewis


Reading Task 1 Texts: Presentation Features

There are many different types of texts. A text may be written to inform,
instruct, describe or persuade.

Texts are presented in different ways.

Types of Texts

Newspaper Article
Phone text.

How Texts are Presented

Texts are presented in different ways:
Adverts in papers, magazines or websites


Reading Task 1

Tabloid Broadsheet

Newspaper Articles


Reading Task 1


Dear Mr Smith

I am writing in reply to your advertisement for a Care Worker in the
Belfast Telegraph. I have just finished my apprenticeship and I am
qualified in Health and Social Care at Level 2.

Phone Texts



Business Cards


Reading Task 1

PRESENTATIONAL DEVICES are sometimes used to present
information and ideas. They are written this way to have a particular
effect on the reader.

Features of Presentational Devices

Device Use


To indicate MAIN topic

Sub Heading

To show new aspect of the topic


Illustrate something in the text in a visual way

Diagrams and

Show information in a visual way

Use of colour

Colour is attractive and draws the eye. It can be
used to highlight or separate different aspects of
the text. It can also be used to show mood. Red or
bright yellow is often used to show danger


Different Print

To separate out different information and to
emphasise parts of text

Different font

To separate different information and change the
mood of the text

Bold print

To emphasise something

Bullet points

To create
a list
which Is easier to read
than a single line


To show order of ideas or information, for example,


To emphasise something


To emphasise something


Logos are a company brand and reassure customers
they are receiving a familiar product, advice or service


Reading Task 1

Read the leaflet on mental health and tick how many presentational
features the writer has used


Feature in


Feature in
Heading Graphs
Sub heading Logo
Diagrams Bold Print
Use of colour Italics
Different size print Bullet points
Different Font
Photographs Numbering

Now write a few sentences on how the leaflet is presented

1. How colour is being used

2. The effect of headings and sub headings


3. Why bullet points are used?

4. Is different print size or bold print being used? What for?

5. There are logos on this leaflet. Why are the organisations logos

6. Why are photographs and pictures being used rather than just
more words?






Reading Task 2 - Reading and selecting relevant information:

You will often need to select the relevant points from either written or
spoken information and summarise it for the reader or listener.

What is Summarising?

A summary is a shorter description of a longer text or speech, which
should be easy to read and to understand.

It contains all the relevant details of the original text/speech but includes
none of the facts, opinions or descriptions that are not relevant to the
overall meaning of the original information.

For example, when filling in an application form or preparing a CV
(Curriculum Vitae) for a job, you would include only the information that
is relevant to the job application.
A CV is only one or two pages long and the information you provide is a
summary of your educational and work history, achievements and
It will allow an employer to judge if you have the necessary
qualifications, training and skills for the job.
(Think about the difference between a CV - education and employment
history - and an autobiography - your life story - where you can write
about all the various aspects of your life).

Dos and Donts of Summarising a Text

Quickly skim read the original text to get the overall meaning. The
title and subheadings can provide clues.

Reread the text again thoroughly to make sure that you
understand its overall meaning.

Look out for hidden meanings (positive / negative vocabulary etc).

Find out the meaning of any unfamiliar words.


Highlight or underline the main points of the text, leaving out any
irrelevant information (details, descriptions or opinions). It is
helpful to bullet point these main points in order to make it easier
to write your summary in its proper sequence.

Summarise by bringing the key points together in sentences and
paragraphs, using proper punctuation and grammar.

Write the summary in your own words (technical terms can be
taken from the original text but do not copy out sentences or

Include information provided by images if relevant to the overall

Change direct speech into reported speech, e.g. Sammy Wilson
says, I still think man-made climate change is a con would be
changed to e.g. Sammy Wilson thinks we are not responsible for
climate change.

Keep summary brief and easier to read than the original.


ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR SOURCE/S. At the beginning or end of
your summary give details of the original text e.g. Source, title,
author and date

Do not include any unnecessary detail that does not support the
overall meaning of the text. For example, when writing a report on
a workplace accident, you would not include what the weather was
like that day unless it directly related to the cause of the accident
e.g. slip caused by frost or ice.

Dont just jot down rough notes that is not a completed summary.

Dont just copy chunks from an original text.

Dont include information descriptions or opinions that do not
support the overall meaning of the text.


At the beginning or end of your summary give details of the original
text e.g.


Below is an original text. The main points have been highlighted in

Simple Steps to a healthy heart
The number of deaths from coronary heart disease (CHD) in Northern
Ireland has dropped significantly, according to recent figures. However,
the Public Health Agency (PHA) is urging everyone to take steps to
protect their heart and reduce their chances of developing the disease
during National Heart Month. Despite the number of deaths dropping
significantly in recent years, coronary heart disease is still the number
one killer across the country. Over 2,200 people died in Northern Ireland
from coronary heart disease in 2010 compared to just over 2,300 people
in 2009 an overall reduction of 100 province-wide. The latest figure
reveals the positive downward trend is continuing in 2008, there were
2,410 deaths, 2,493 in 2007 and 2,554 in 2006, while in 1979 there were
nearly 5,000 deaths. Throughout National Heart Month in February, the
PHA is calling for people to follow a number of steps in a bid to reduce
their chances of developing the disease.

155 words

These are the main points selected from the original text and listed in
bullet points.

Main Points of Article

The number of deaths from coronary heart disease in Northern Ireland
is dropping.
CHD is still the number one killer across the country.
Public Health Agency is urging everyone to take action to protect their
heart and reduce the chance of developing heart disease.

Here is the final summary rewritten it in my own words. It is written in full
sentences and any unnecessary detail has been left out.


The number of deaths from coronary heart disease in Northern Ireland is
dropping but it is still the number one killer in the Province. The Public
Health Agency is urging everyone to take action to protect their heart
and reduce their chances of getting the disease.

46 Words


Reading Task 2


Alcohol Services

Figures in August 2011 show that while 3.5 million people used drugs in
the last year, 8.2 million people have an alcohol disorder. Meanwhile,
the government Information Centre for Health and Social Care revealed
that alcohol-related illness has reached record levels. In-patient care for
people with mental health or behavioural disorders resulting from alcohol
misuse increased by 75 per cent from 1995 to 2005, and from 72,500
admissions to 126,300, it said. Numbers admitted to hospital with liver
disease due to alcohol have more than doubled over the past ten years.

93 words

Main points of text (in bullet points)

Summary of text

_______ words

Reading Task 3 - Summarising
BBC Panoramas Undercover Care: The Abuse Exposed
The BBC filmed abuse of patients with learning difficulties at
Winterbourne View residential hospital in Bristol. During five weeks
spent filming undercover, BBC Panoramas reporter captured footage of
some of the hospitals most vulnerable patients being repeatedly pinned
down, slapped, dragged into showers while fully clothed, taunted and
The case has been condemned as shocking by the government and
Care Services Minister Paul Burstow said he was determined to
strengthen safeguards for vulnerable adults. He has already ordered a
thorough examination of the roles of the government regulator, the Care
Quality Commission (CQC), and the local authorities. CQC chairman
Dame Jo Williams admitted that the failure to follow up the reports of a
whistleblower a senior nurse at the home had been an unforgivable
error of judgement. Avon and Somerset police confirmed three men
aged 42, 30 and 25 and a 24-year-old woman were arrested as part of
their investigation into the hospital. The hospitals owners, Castlebeck,
have apologised and suspended 13 employees. It has launched an
internal investigation into its whistle-blower procedures and is reviewing
the records of all 580 patients in 56 facilities. Winterbourne View can
accommodate 24 patients and is taxpayer-funded, charging the state an
average of 3,500 per patient per week.
213 words



Summarise the above article

Main points of text (in bullet points)

Summary of text

_______ words


Reading Task 4 - Formal and Informal Texts

Using formal or informal language depends on the audience and
purpose of a text.

Formal style is usually used for:
Official correspondence e.g. letters to or from your company.
Official documents and books that have been published.
Corresponding with people with whom you are not familiar.

Informal style is normally used for:
Speaking or writing to people you know well.

Identify which of the following features is formal or informal:

Feature Formal or Informal?
Incomplete sentences
Complex sentences
Short simple sentences
Easy words
Abbreviations, for example gr8

Which style [formal or informal] is most suitable for

Letter of application
An internal company memo
Email invitation to 18th birthday

Letter of opinion to local

A mobile phone text to a friend
A holiday postcard
A post it to a family member
A company report


Reading Task 5 - Reading and Understanding: Skimming;
Scanning and Detailed Reading

We skim read, scan read or read a text in detail depending on the
information we want from the text. This makes for efficient research.
Often we need to use all three skills in order to make sense of a text.

Skim Reading

Skim reading a text is where you would read over the whole text quickly
to get a general idea of what it is about. For example, you might skim
read a newspaper article or a story in a magazine in order to get the gist
of the story.


Scanning a text is where you would look over a text to find specific
information. For example, we scan the yellow pages to find a decorator
or a plumber. We would also scan dictionaries, glossaries, calendars
and so on to find specific information.

Detailed Reading

Often when we read it is important that we read every word. For
example, when we read a set of instructions it is important to make sure
we do not leave anything out.


Reading Task 5

1. Skim-read the following piece of writing and write in one or two
sentences what the article is mainly about.

2. Scan the text to find the third item on the list of 6 areas relating to
what social care workers must do write it out below.

Read the text in detail to answer the following question. Please give
your answer in complete sentences.

3. What are social care workers expected to protect?


Reading Task 5
NISCC Code of Practice for Social Care Workers

The Northern Ireland Social Care Councils Code of Practice for Social
Care Workers is a list of statements that describe the standards of
professional conduct and practice required of social care workers as
they go about their daily work.

The purpose of this code is to set out the conduct that is expected of
social care workers and to inform service users and the public about the
standards of conduct they can expect from social care workers. It forms
part of the wider package of legislation, practice standards and
employers policies and procedures that social care workers must meet.
Social care workers are responsible for making sure that their conduct
does not fall below the standards set out in this code and that no action
or omission on their part harms the wellbeing of service users.

Social care workers must:

1. Protect the rights and promote the interests of service users and
2. Strive to establish and maintain the trust and confidence of service
users and carers;
3. Promote the independence of service users while protecting them
as far as possible from danger or harm;
4. Respect the rights of service users while seeking to ensure that
their behaviour does not harm themselves or other people;
5. Uphold public trust and confidence in social care services; and
6. Be accountable for the quality of their work and take responsibility
for maintaining and improving their knowledge and skills.


Reading Task 6 - Types of Texts: Linguistic Features

The type of text that is written depends on who it is being written for (the
audience) and why the text has been written (the purpose). You will
need to become familiar with the features of different types of text.

Types of Text Features
e.g. Newspaper
Article - Leaflet
Texts that provide information aim to be easy
to read.
They may have:

Headings and subheadings
to show clearly the topic and aspect of a topic in
the paragraph

Paragraph length
shorter paragraphs make the text easier to read

Bullet points
show the main points

to highlight important information

Bold print
to catch the attention of the reader. Used for
headings and key words/phrases

Font Size
larger font size indicates more important

to emphasize a point

to catch attention of the reader. It also shows


Types of Text Features
Instruction Leaflet The writer speaks directly to the reader.
Instructions are in the proper order - often

Written in the present tense

Writer uses words that give orders - do / do not
Descriptive text
(e.g. stories,
Noun - views
Verb - lashed
Aim: Texts that describe aim for you to imagine
what they are describing. They use:

Adjectives - used to describe nouns, e.g. The
views from the holiday apartment were stunning.
(noun) (adjective)

Adverbs - used to describe verbs e.g. The waves
lashed furiously against the rocks.
(verb) (adverb)

Comparisons - something is like something else
e.g. The moon was like a huge silver ball in the

Five senses - to show how something looks,
sounds, feels, smells and tastes, e.g. The rain had
the feel of cold metal against our faces.

Persuasive Texts
(e.g. advertising)
When writing to persuade the writers aim is to
make the reader do something or believe

Emotive language
Sometimes a writer will use words or phrases to
make the reader feel a particular emotion, e.g.
sadness, anger, guilt etc.
Cowboy builders are conning the elderly and most
vulnerable in our society.

Facts and Statistics
When factual information is given to support a point
of view, e.g.
More than 70% of people living in the western
world live in timber framed houses.

Types of Text Features
Persuasive Texts
(e.g. advertising)
Opinion presented as if it was fact
When information is given to support a point of
view but cannot be proved.
Most people prefer to continue to live at home
when they get older

Repeating a particular word, phrase or idea
throughout the text emphasises the point that the
writer is making.
Building Houses, Building Community, Building
(Habitat for Humanity poster)

Rhetorical questions
These make the reader think about what is being
asked. They also aim to involve the reader, making
them think that their opinion is important.
Is it worth all the bother of moving when a roof or
cellar conversion can give you the space you

List of three
When three adjectives or phrases are used to
emphasise a point, e.g.
The new care home was light, bright and airy.

Makes something appear really good or really bad.
Best Ever Sale of DIY materials in Northern

Use of supporting viewpoints
Using expert opinion or quotes from famous people
to make a viewpoint appear more convincing.

Question and answer
Used to draw readers attention to particular
aspects of an issue.


Persuasive Texts
(e.g. advertising)
Criticise the other persons point of view.
This is where the writer attacks the opposing
argument to make their own argument seem better.

Use of the same sounds at the beginning of words
catches the readers attention e.g.
Thompsons Temps cant be topped

Personal pronouns
Using words such as I, we, you, our, us, to
make the reader feel the writer is speaking directly
to you.
We can give you great advice on training for your


Reading Task 6

Identify whether the following texts are information, instruction,
descriptive or persuasive:

1. Hand washing
1. Wet your hands with warm, running water and apply liquid soap or
use clean bar soap. Lather well.
2. Rub your hands vigorously together for at least 15 to 20 seconds.
3. Scrub all surfaces, including the backs of your hands, wrists, between
your fingers and under your fingernails.
4. Rinse well.
5. Dry your hands with a clean or disposable towel.
6. Use a towel to turn off the tap.
Type of text: _______________________________________

2. Sunshine Care is a family-owned business that provides the best
possible specialist 24 hour live-in care service for those who live in their
own home in the North West of Northern Ireland. Our carers, who are
qualified and trained professionals, support the needs of our clients 24
hours a day, 7 days a week, allowing them the best quality of life
possible. We are members of the United Kingdom Home Care
Association, (UKHCA). Our services are tried, tested and trusted. The
costs to you of a live in care support worker can be as little as 64 per
day for a self-employed Companion Housekeeper on our Live-in Care
Gold service; and from 73 per day for a Personal Assistant (PA)
providing personal care, (including agency charges).

Type of text: __________________________________________


Reading Task 6

Identify whether the following texts are information, instruction,
descriptive or persuasive:
3. Most of us at some point in our lives may need to make use of social
care services. It may be for you, for a family member or friend and could
be for a variety of reasons - the result of a physical, sensory or learning
disability, mental ill-health, the need for additional support with your
children, the impact of an illness or getting older. Social care provides
the necessary support and care to help adults, children, families, older
people, and their carers deal with such situations as independently as
People employed in social care work closely with the people using care
services and their carers as well as other professionals such as social
workers, community nurses, doctors, housing officers, teachers, staff of
education and local authorities, health and social services trusts and
support groups. As a result the range of work carried out within the
social care sector is hugely diverse and covers day centre care,
residential care, supported living, care at home and projects within the
Type of text: ______________________________________

4. The word dementia is used to describe a group of symptoms.
Although dementia is commonly thought of as memory loss, the reality is
much more complex, and symptoms between the different forms of
dementia can vary a great deal. Dementia symptoms can include
memory loss, confusion and mood changes.
About 820,000 people in the UK have dementia. Most are over 65, but
over 15,000 under-65s have dementia. Dementia in people under 65 is
often called early-onset dementia.

Type of text: _________________________________________


Reading Task 7 - Types of Writing: Writing to Instruct


In the course of your work you will often read or write instructions.
Instructions are not just pieces of advice or suggestions about how to
carry out a job. Instructions are about how a job MUST be carried out so
that the end result is a job completed safely and to the proper standards.

Features of Writing to Instruct

1. Instructions must be written in the correct order. When carrying out
instructions for any job you could waste time or cause annoyance or
even injury to yourself or others if following instructions that are in the
wrong order.

2. Only relevant information should be included. Extra information could
confuse the person following the instructions.

3. Instructions should be clear and easy to follow.

4. Instructions are given in a series of clear simple commands or
directions. The verbs give commands, e.g. Stop here and are often
found at the beginning of a sentence. They clearly state what the person
should do.

5. Instructions are written in the present or future tense as if the action is
happening now. e.g. Press the button and a light will come on.

Activity 1

Youve agreed to do a little bit of DIY for your neighbour while hes on
holiday. Below are two sets of instructions for the job. Which set is more
effective? Give reasons for your answers. (Remember to check the list of
features of instruction texts).

1. Painting Job

Clear the room before you start.
Place anything that needs to stay in the centre of the room.
Use dust sheets to cover items.

Fill any cracks or holes.
Wash down with sugar soap solution. (Use protective goggles and
Prime walls.
Paint ceiling first.
Then paint walls
Finally paint the woodwork.

This set of instructions is effective / ineffective because:

Activity 2

2. Painting Job

See before you start, Chris, would you check if the dogs bowl has water,
because were away from 5 oclock this morning and the neighbour cant
pick him up until 10am. If I were you, I would get as much furniture out of
the room as possible and anything you cant move sure just put it into
the middle of the room with a couple of dust sheets over the top. Take a
look and see if there are any cracks or holes that need fixing up before
you start. Youll need to paint the ceiling first in case the paint drips
down onto the walls and then paint the walls and then the skirting boards
and doors. After youve filled in the cracks or holes youll need to wash
the walls down with the sugar soap solution. Make sure you put the old
goggles and gloves on for the sugar solution wash the last time
I did it my eyes stung for a week!!!! And dont forget to prime the walls
after the sugar soap solution wash has dried.


This set of instructions is effective / ineffective because:

Activity 3

3. Which of these sentences are instructions?

a. Measure 10 grams of powder mix and add 250mls of water.
b. Most social care workers are employed by the independent sector.
c. People who suffer from dementia often have mood swings.
d. Make sure you follow the manufacturers instructions for the hoist.
e. Carry out the procedure in the correct order.
f. Allow the client to be as independent as possible
g. More than 50% of moving and handling injuries in health and
social care involve the handling of people
h. From 6 April 2012, the RIDDOR over-three-day reporting
requirement for people injured at work will change to more than
seven days.
i. Make sure you report any accidents at work.

Activity 4

4. Make out a set of instructions for the following task.
The instruction verbs below may be useful.

a. Instructions for making a cup of tea.

Put lift fill click use add take make mix stir


Reading Task 8 - Types of Texts: Persuasive Writing


Writers use a range of techniques to engage the reader. Writing to
persuade aims to make the reader do something or believe something.
The following testimonials express customer satisfaction with a home
care business.
North West Homecare specialises in caring for people of all ages and
needs in the comfort and security of their own homes throughout the
Province. A family business, North West Homecare offers a wide
range of homecare services to suit all needs and budgets. We can help
you recuperate at home after a stay in hospital, or be on hand to relieve
a regular carer whilst they take a well-earned break. Our Nursing and
Care staff can also help with some of the day to day activities you might
be finding increasingly difficult or be available for more complex care
over a longer period of time.

"Thank you all so much for all you have given to our family. The team
that was put together fitted in with our family so well. Everyone was so
kind and eager to help and do all they could for John. With the help of
North West Homecare, John's time at home was made special and we
are very grateful." The Doherty Family

"Thank you and your great team for all your hard work this week. We
may need you again in future and I will certainly recommend you to any
friends and family. Linda

I found North West Homecare to be very caring and professional. They
have the ability to adapt to individual needs and be proactive. I would
highly recommend them to anyone. James


Reading Task 8

1. Who do you think is the intended audience for these testimonials?

2. What is the purpose of the testimonials?

3. On the basis of these testimonials would you use this homecare

4. Why?


Reading Task 9 - Analysing a Newspaper Article

At Level 2 you will be closely analysing texts of 500 words or more.

You will need to identify:

The intended audience of the text.
The purpose of the text why was the text written?
Is there more than one viewpoint presented?
The events that led the writer to produce the article.
The main idea of the article.
The arguments the writer is putting forward.
Facts / statistics / quotes from expert witnesses etc that support
the writers main arguments his/her sources of information.
If the reporting is true (balanced) or biased?
Different points of view given by the writer.
Is the article balanced, persuasive, informative, convincing?
Your own feelings about the article. Do you agree with the writers
point/s of view?


Read the following article Northern Ireland Health Service faces shake
up and analyse the article using the list above.

Write your answers in full sentences which are properly punctuated.

If you are using quotes from the text to back up your comments
remember to enclose them in inverted commas, for example,
Mr Compton says, Trusts will be asked to identify savings over the next


Northern Ireland's Health Service faces shake-up
By Lisa Smyth
Friday, 1 July 2011
Some of Northern Ireland's hospitals and A&Es could shut as early as
next year after the Health & Social Care Board approved a draft plan
which will dramatically change the way healthcare is delivered here.
The vision includes cutting the current number of 10 acute hospitals by
up to half, reducing spending on wages by 40m, which equates to
2,000 jobs, closing local hospitals, treating more patients outside of
Northern Ireland and slashing the number of care home places for the
John Compton, Chief Executive of the Board, has refused to name
which hospitals could close under the plans, but with four acute sites
located near Belfast city centre, it is likely that at least one will be
downgraded to a local hospital.
And while people in Enniskillen are looking forward to the opening of the
new acute Erne Hospital, there are also concerns over the future of
Causeway and Daisy Hill hospitals.
The number of local hospitals across Northern Ireland is also likely to be
reduced as the draft report recommends transferring services to acute
hospitals to ensure "greater cost effectiveness".
The proposed changes in health and social care in Northern Ireland
could result in:
Operations carried out on fewer sites with patients spending
several days in acute settings before being transferred to a local
hospital closer to home for recovery and rehabilitation.
Tattoo removal and other cosmetic procedures no longer available
on the NHS.
Young people with serious mental health problems sent to
specialist treatment centres outside Northern Ireland.

Massive increase in the number of pensioners living in their own
homes instead of care homes.
More neurology and cardiac services being provided outside
Northern Ireland.
However, there will be a 41m black hole in the health budget this year -
even with the range of controversial proposals.
Mr. Compton, Chief Executive of the Board and the man who will head
up a major review of acute services in Northern Ireland, warned this
could rise to as much as 60m as a result of unplanned events, such as
extremely harsh winter conditions or a serious infection outbreak.
He said Trusts will be asked to identify savings over the next year which
will probably lead to longer waits in some specialties, but admitted it may
not be possible to plug the financial gap.
He also said the budget for dental services is likely to be as much as
7m short with a review under way to identify possible savings, including
removing treatments from the NHS.
There were angry scenes ahead of the meeting in Belfast yesterday as
union members jostled to be allowed in to view proceedings at board
headquarters in Linenhall Street. The proposals will now go to the Health
Minister for approval and the trusts will be asked to propose how they
will deliver changes - for example, what services they will provide and
which hospitals will close.
Mr. Compton said: "We are struggling to make ends meet but it would be
completely inappropriate to say there will be no health service. We
commit more than 10m every 24 hours to support the delivery of
services to the population of Northern Ireland."
He also played down fears over the future of midwife-led delivery units in
Northern Ireland: "We are going to review this service just as we would
with any service to ascertain how it is working. This will help us if we
want to create more similar units."

Reading Task 10 - Reading Images

We often use images (photographs, maps, charts, graphs, etc) to gather
information or to put information across.

There are many health and safety signs used in the workplace to alert
employees and customers to dangers.

Guides for various care activities can also use pictures to show
instructions more clearly. In the course of your work, you may use
guides like this one on moving and handling.


Reading Task 10


Here are two safety signs for personal protective equipment. The
audience and purpose of both signs is the same.

Which of the signs do you think puts the message across most
effectively? Why? Write about each of the signs saying why you think
one is more effective than the other.


Reading Task 11 - Practice for Desktop Task Part 1

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

Homecare Independent Livings
Managing Director Mairead Mackle
shares her companys approach to CSR
and the benefits it brings to the wider
community and to the company itself.
We set out to have an impact on our local
community because we are a community
healthcare provider. Homecare Independent Living is one of the largest
private community healthcare providers in Ireland, employing over 950
staff. Our CSR activities are delivered through our dedicated charity
committee (iCare), which draws its name from the companys five core
Respect; and
Cross community activities of iCare mean that our staff and families can
get involved in are prioritised. Its fundraising work is dedicated to
tackling small but meaningful changes in our local communities. iCares
Gatelodge project ( is mainly directed at
childrens charities e.g. the NSPCC and the Sophia Fund for the Royal
Victoria Hospitals neonatal unit, SCOPE UK (Children with Cerebral
Palsy) and OVC (Orphans and Vulnerable Children).
Separately, the company also sponsors the under-18 and ladies teams
at Armagh City Football Club and they in turn offer their help with our
community activities. We also sponsor some primary schools sports
activities which involve all their young people.
Over 250 volunteers are involved in the Gatelodge project, with many
coming from secondary schools in the Armagh area. We invite our local
schools to involve their 17 and 18 year old students and each young
person is trained in customer care. The highlight of the year is the

opening of the 130-year old Manor House Gatelodge in the village of
Milford for 16 days in December, which attracts thousands of visitors
from across Ireland. The entire village becomes part of the experience
and everyone has a part to play. The staff and students really enjoy the
practical and fun elements of it. Additionally, the Milford Fun Day for
Families on the August Bank Holiday raises money to renovate the listed
community hall in the village, which will ultimately benefit the whole
Activities should be linked to the ability, skills and resources of the
company. In our case, Homecare provides community services and has
a large female workforce. Supporting local school activities helps to
support local mothers, many of whom work for Homecare.
iCares other area of focus is to help reduce social isolation for older
people, especially in rural areas, and we have just commenced a much
needed befriending service in the Armagh area assisted by CAWT
(Cooperation and Working Together) Project. Many of our staff will offer
themselves for a few hours each week to help another person and this
can be very rewarding.
In my opinion, we must apply the same business skills and concepts
across CSR and our core work.
Whether its a fun day, a family trip to The Gatelodge or a visit from a
befriender, the experience has to be good one regardless of the fact that
the funds may be going to a charitable cause or its delivered by a
volunteer. This means using our business skills right across the board to
create worthwhile services or events.
Environmental initiatives that many companies highlight as part of their
CSR activities are part and parcel of our normal business routine e.g.
efficient energy and transport use, and a sustainable approach to waste
CSR also brings tremendous internal benefits in terms of staff morale,
enabling a good community spirit and helping both young and old work
together. It is time-consuming and involves a huge commitment of effort
but ultimately proves to be more than worthwhile.


Reading Task 11
Read the article on Corporate Social Responsibility and answer the
questions below.
1. What Committee does Homecare Independent Living run its
corporate social responsibility activities through?

2. Name two benefits to the company staff as a result of its corporate
social responsibility activities

3. Name two charities that Homecare Independent Living supports
through its Gatelodge Project.

4. Give an example of where the author has expressed an opinion.



Words, once they are printed, have a
life of their own

Carol Burnett


Writing Task 1 - Sentences

Sentences are groups of words that make complete sense. When writing
you will need to check that your sentences are complete.

Example 1. Moving and handling procedures are
does not make a complete statement and is not a proper sentence.

Example 2. Moving and handling procedures are important to follow.
This makes a complete statement and is a sentence. Every word counts.

Activity 1

Which of these groups of words is a complete sentence? Circle the
incomplete sentences. Rewrite the incomplete sentences, using the
beginnings or endings below, to make complete sentences.

Infection control is.
Exercise is a great way to get out and meet people..,.
Always remember to..
Keep walking areas clear of anything you might trip on.
Minor burns can be helped by
Exercise reduces stress.

eat 5 portions of fruit or vegetables every day.
holding them under running water.
.very important in a care setting.


Writing Task 1

Are the following sentences complete or incomplete? Score out the
wrong answer.

1. Alcohol abuse is one of the biggest causes of family problems

Complete / incomplete

2. Exercise relaxes tense muscles

Complete / incomplete

3. Most of your energy should

Complete / incomplete

4. Certain groups of people

Complete / incomplete

5. Equality is a word often used in social care

Complete / incomplete

6. Are all examples of communication

Complete / incomplete

7. Responsibility for adult learning is largely individual

Complete / incomplete

8. Will probably not help learning

Complete / incomplete

9. Congratulate yourself on things you have done well

Complete / incomplete

10. You to sleep better

Complete / incomplete

11. Exercise reduces stress

Complete / incomplete

12. Painkillers can be used for headaches

Complete / incomplete


Writing Task 2 - Simple, Compound and Complex Sentences

When we write we use a variety of sentences to make our writing more
interesting and engaging to the reader.

Simple Sentences
A simple sentence expresses a complete thought and contains a subject
and a verb.

Jane is making the bed

Jane is making the bed

Compound Sentences
A compound sentence is made up of two complete simple sentences
joined by a conjunction such as for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so

Jane is making the bed and Ann is cleaning the windows.

Complex Sentences
A complex sentence has a complete sentence with a complete thought.
It has a subject and a verb but it adds additional information. The
additional information is given in phrases that tell you more about the
complete sentence. The phrases cannot stand on their own. The
information in the complete sentence part is more important than the
additional phrase/s.

Jane is making the bed and, although she is terrified of heights, Ann
is cleaning the windows.

Additional phrase
- is not a
complete thought
less important
part of sentence.


Writing Task 2


Which of the following are simple, compound or complex sentences?

1. Margaret sets up the hoist and Jean helps the client.

2. Margaret sets up the hoist.

3. Unless a care worker is properly trained, he/she cannot move
clients safely.

4. Before using a hoist, you should read the manufacturers


Writing Task 3 - Punctuation

Punctuation is important because it helps the reader to understand what
you have written.

There are four types of sentence. Sentences all begin with a capital
letter but they do not all end the same way.

Statements: The Makaton system is used to help communication with
some people who have a learning disability. (Full stop)

Questions: Does training improve practice? (Question mark)

Exclamations: Lead poisons water! (Exclamation mark)

Commands: Wear gloves! (Full stop or exclamation mark can be
used here)

A sentence needs to make complete sense and needs to include a verb.

This is a sentence:

The history of nursing is linked to closely war time

This is incomplete and does not contain a verb. It is not a sentence.
The history of nursing


Writing Task 3

Activity 1

Read the following sentences and add the correct capital letters and
punctuation to each.

1. the methods for safe moving and handling have changed over
the years

2. how do I improve my practice

3. exercise seems to improve the spirits and people feel happier

4. never leave medicines within the reach of children


Writing Task 3

Activity 2

Comma ,

Commas are used to break up sentences into orderly chunks.

Commas are used to separate items in a list, e.g.

Health & Social Care Trusts manage and administer hospitals, health
centres, residential homes, day centres and other care facilities.

A comma separates each item - the last two items on the list are
linked by and - no commas are needed.

Commas separate out additional information that has been added
into a sentence e.g.

The Health and Social Care Board, after consultation with
stakeholders, may decide to reduce the number of hospitals.

(*Try reading the sentence above without the highlighted phase. You will
find the sentence reads perfectly well without it!)

A comma is used to separate clauses.

A clause is a main part of a sentence and each clause must have a
verb e.g.

Unless it is a replacement dwelling, building is not encouraged in the

Clause with verb is Clause with verb phrase is not


Writing Task 3

Rewrite the following sentences putting commas in the correct places.

1. To improve the quality of the populations health the Public
Health Agency works in partnership with councils.

2. Councils aim to improve the amount of walking swimming
cycling and other physical activity going on in their areas.

3. Unless levels of physical activity increase obesity levels will
continue to rise.

4. If it has a good reason the Council can change the plans.


5. The council will keep track of the use of pitches swimming
pools gyms and cycling paths.

6. This is all part of the Public Health Agencys new strategy A
Fitter Future for All which was launched in March 2012.

7. This ten year strategy will seek to improve the wellbeing of
people throughout their entire life from newborns to seniors.

8. Obesity increases the risk of developing serious illnesses
such as heart disease stroke some cancers and type 2


Writing Task 3

Activity 3

Colon :

Use a colon before giving an example or an explanation of what has
gone before, a list or a quotation.

There are various types of care facilities: hospitals, residential
homes, domiciliary care and day care.

Rewrite the sentences below putting the colon in its proper place.

1. The vacancy advert in the paper suits me its looking for
someone with experience in home care working.

2. Safety signs are vital they are a constant reminder of the
hazards in the workplace.

3. Care plans are useful they provide information and guidance
on the care of the client.

4. Peter made a list of what he needed to prepare the feed
gloves, measuring jug, powder mixture and milk.


Writing Task 3

Activity 4

Semi-colon ;

Use a semi-colon to separate two related sentences.


Many care workers suffer from back injuries; more than 50% of
these injuries occur when moving and handling clients.

Insert semi-colons into the following sentences.

1. Plan your moving and handling in advance avoid injury.

2. There can be no short cuts on safe practice keep your training
up to date.

3. Some moving will require the use of a hoist always make sure
you check it before you start.

4. You may need someone elses help with the hoist ensure
someone is with you from the beginning of the move.


Writing Task 3

Activity 5

Brackets ( ) and Dashes -

Brackets and dashes can be used to separate out extra information from
the main part of the sentence or statement. Either works equally well.

1. Protective clothing (especially leather or PVC gloves) should be
worn to protect the hands from sharp or jagged edges.

2. Protective clothing - especially leather or PVC gloves - should be
worn to protect the hands from sharp or jagged edges.

Now try these. Rewrite the sentences below twice once using brackets
and the second time using dashes.

1. Sprains and strains to muscles joints, ligaments, tendons,
disc trouble and hernias are often caused by sudden awkward
movements while lifting.

2. When I first started work with North West Homecare at the
beginning of my apprenticeship I was given an induction talk
and had training in Health and Safety.


Writing Task 3

Activity 6

Speech Marks

Speech marks are used to show the exact words spoken.

Ann said, The new respite service is starting next week.

Put speech marks in the correct places within these sentences.

1. The driver asked Margaret where do I leave the delivery?

2. Have you completed your training on Health and Safety
legislation the tutor asked the group?

3. Did Joe pass on the memo to you the receptionist asked?

4. Jan said we finish tomorrow for our holidays.


Inverted Commas

We use inverted commas when:

Quoting what someone has said or written, e.g. The newspaper article
stated that Global temperatures are continuing to rise.

Giving the title of newspaper, book, film or play, e.g. Joe Bloggs book
Understanding Health and Social Care is used by care students
throughout the UK.

When using slang or when words are used in a particular way e.g. He
thought the group was real cool.

Insert inverted commas into the following sentences.

1. Environmental correspondent, Richard Black (BBC News
website) in his article Big profit from nature protection says
that money ploughed into protecting wetlands, coral reefs and
forests can bring a hundredfold return on capital.

2. Sue thought her manager was a bit of a jobsworth until she
realised that the rules were legal requirements that kept her
and her colleagues safe.

3. The title of Peters assignment was Health and Safety Policies
improve safety in the workplace.


Writing Task 4 - Apostrophes

Apostrophe or Plural?

Most mistakes with apostrophes are made using plurals. Plural just
means more than one. You would not use an apostrophe with a plural,

We offer discount on larger orders.
(more than one order it is plural so no apostrophe used)

Joiners should look after their tools.
(more than one joiner plural so no apostrophe needed)

Activity 1

In the following sentences apostrophes have been used for plurals.
Rewrite the sentences correctly.

1. Belfast Catering Supplies for cheaper meals !

2. Hoists are one of the most important pieces of equipment in
the residential home.


Writing Task 4

3. It is important to keep the rooms in the Home clean and tidy.

4. It is vital to offer clients something to drink regularly so they
stay hydrated.

5. Eat two portions of salad or vegetables with every meal.


Writing Task 4

Apostrophes - Possession

Apostrophes are used to show ownership

s is added to the word that shows who the owner is.

The doctors chart.
(the chart belongs to the doctor)

The plumbers van
(the van belongs to the plumber)

The safety officers inspection
(the inspection was carried out by the safety officer)

Activity 2

The sentences below all have single owners. Rewrite using an
apostrophe to show ownership.

The joiners last job took him four days to complete.

The televisions remote was broken.

The clients family were very happy with the support being given.

Writing Task 4


When there is more than one owner and the noun ends in s add an
apostrophe after the s e.g.

The customers property

The clients wishes

When a noun ends in s you can add s or just

Thomass plane

Charles drill.


Writing Task 4

Apostrophes - Omission

Apostrophes are used when letters are missing.


The apostrophe is used when writing contractions. Contractions are
shortened forms of words from which letters are missing. We mainly use
contractions in speech or in informal texts.

We shorten a word or phrase and then use an apostrophe to show
where the letters are missing from.

Here are some familiar examples



do not o dont
are not o arent
was not o wasnt
I am a Im
I will wi Ill
It is i its
you are a youre
let us u lets
can not no cant
could not o couldnt

Another example which doesnt fit so neatly is the shortened form of will
not: wont.

Often the following are mixed up. If you say the words in full you should
not get mixed up.

There / their / theyre
Theyre sounds like there (a place) and their (belonging to them). It is
short for they are.
Writing Task 4

Youre / your

Your means belonging to you.
Youre is a short for you are.

Its / its
Its is short for it is or it has.
Its means belonging to it.

Activity 3
Rewrite sentences 1, 2 and 3 below changing the bolded words into
contractions using an apostrophe.

1. They are throwing a party when the new home is complete.

2. You are the best candidate for the job.

3. It is important to ensure confidentiality at work.

4. Now write a sentence containing its and one containing its.


Writing Task 4

Read through the email below. It contains a number of contractions.
Underline or highlight the contractions in the text then rewrite the email
message using the words written in full. Does the rewritten message
sound more formal?


Subject: Saturday Job!

Hi Jane

I havent had a minute since I last saw you. Hows the new job going?
Hope youre not working too hard! Im wondering if youd be interested
in some weekend work.

One of the girls has gone off sick and were looking for some cover this
weekend in your area. I know youre familiar with the clients.

You wouldnt, by any chance, have Anns mobile number? Im hoping
shell tip in as well because its hard to beat a good team!

Let me know anyway and Ill see you soon


Writing Task 4


Subject: Saturday Job!


Writing Task 5 Subject Verb Agreement

Verbs and subjects must agree. Rewrite the sentences using the correct
verb form so that it agrees with its subject.

(Remember: Verbs are action words and the subject is who or what is
doing the action)

1. The Health and Safety at Work (Northern Ireland) Order
require/ requires that employers must provide a safe place of

2. Employers must provide equipment that are/is suitable for the

3. One of the benefits of training is/are that it helps you do your
job better.


Writing Task 5

4. Confidentiality is/are very important at work.

5. The wooden chairs was/were made from Douglas fir.

6. The new beds was/were very comfortable.


Writing Task 6 - Tenses

A verb indicates when an action takes place. It can be the past, present
or the future.
In 2008 I worked for
North West Homecare
I work for the Western
Domiciliary care
Next year I will own my
own business

When using verbs you need to think whether the sentence is referring to
the past, present or future.

Remember to keep the verb tense consistent when discussing the same

Verb Tenses - Activity

Read the following report on a workplace accident and chose the correct
verb tense for the report.

Joan Briars and her supervisor Elaine Reid, were / are / will be
employees of Domiciliary Care West, a Northern Ireland home care
company. They were / are / will be carrying out a visit at 22 Sloan
Street to assess a client and had just started / start / will start back to
work after lunch at 2pm.

The assessment went well and Elaine agrees/ agreed/ will agree the
contract with the client. As they left, Joan trips/ tripped/ will trip on the
step outside the house. Elaine helps/ helped/ will help her to the car
and drives/ drove/ will drive to Casualty. Joan has/ had/ will have
fractured her ankle badly.


Writing Task 7 Spelling Homophones

Homophones are words that sound the same but are spelled differently
and have different meanings.

Many homophones, such as the ones below, are used very often so it is
important that you learn how to spell them.

Rewrite the sentences below using the correct homophone. Then write a
sentence of your own containing each of the homophones.

Activity 1 Are, Our and Hour

Are is part of the verb to be e.g. We are care workers they are
nurses you are a social worker
Team meetings are normally held on Friday afternoon

Our means belonging to us. e.g. Our new contract begins in October.

Hour means the time on the clock e.g. The delivery should have been
here an hour ago.

a. Chairs for clients ( are / our / hour ) available in a variety of
designs, shapes, sizes and materials.

b. ( Hour / our / are ) course tutor is a stickler on values.


c. We practice taking bloods in ( are / our / hour ) workshop at

d. Different types of hoists ( hour / are / our ) often used in
moving and handling clients whose mobility is limited.

e. An important part of ( our / hour / are ) job is keeping records.

f. Often there ( our / are/ hour ) several different types of records
to complete at work.

g. ( Hour / our / are ) group had a three ( are / our / hour ) risk
assessment training on Tuesday.


Writing Task 7

Activity 2 - Theyre / their / there

Theyre - they are - They are planning to move

There - 1) - a place e.g. over there 2) Used with is, are, were, was.

Their - belonging to them - their business

Rewrite the following sentences using the correct homophone.

a. ( Theyre / there / their ) planning to start the new respite care
service in May.

b. ( Theyre / their / there ) normally offered one week or two
week respite care periods.

c. Most older people prefer to live in their own homes. ( Theyre /
their / there ) home is a familiar place.


d. ( Their / there / theyre ) assessment process focuses on the

e. Staff need ( theyre / their / there ) own cars to visit clients so
it is important that ( theyre / there / their ) roadworthy.

f. Individuals work best when ( there / their / theyre ) valued and

g. When using equipment ( their / there / theyre ) can be danger
of injury so staff must use (their/ there/ theyre) protective


Writing Task 7

Activity 3 - Where / were / wear / were

Where - a place - Where is the clients home?

Were - past tense - We were planning to move.

Were - short for we are. Were the proud owners of two new protective

Wear - to be clothed in - I wear protective at work. Or - to wear out
something by using it a lot.

a. In the Care Home it is important to ( were / where / were /
wear ) gloves when handling food.

b. At night it is important to ( where / wear / were /were ) high
visibility vests to let others see exactly ( where / wear / were /
were ) you are.

c. ( Wear / were / were / where ) all agreed that ( were / where /
wear / were ) Health and Safety are concerned, its better to be
safe than sorry.


d. Jean knew ensured she knew exactly ( wear / where / were /
were ) all her clients families lived.

e. If you are using equipment it is vital to ( where / wear / were /
were ) the correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for
the task.

f. It is important to know when and ( were / where / wear / were )
to use particular equipment.

g. We need to maintain equipment to protect it from ( were /
where / wear / were ) and tear.


Writing Task 7

Activity 4 - Whos or Whose?

Whos - means who is

Whose - means belonging to whom

a. Make sure you know ( whos / whose ) job it is to carry out a
risk assessment on the new clients home.

b. ( Whos / whose ) the new supervisor at North West Caring?

c. ( Whos / whose ) uniform is this?

d. ( Whos / Whose ) name is on this kit?


Writing Task 7

Activity 5 - To / Two / Too

To - towards - I am going to the suppliers later.

Two - the number 2

Too - as well as - or also - or over the top - too much

a. The workers knew that if they accepted another job they
would have ( to / two / too ) much work on to be able to
complete on time.

b. Most garages are (to / two / too) small for modern cars.

c. Disruption ( to / two / too ) to your home life can be kept ( to /
two / too ) a minimum by using the same carers visiting at a
regular time.

d. The visit would take ( to / too / two ) hours at the most.


Writing Task 8 - Paragraphs

Look at any piece of writing a newspaper article, a letter, a book or a
magazine and you will see that the text is divided into paragraphs.
Dividing the text into paragraphs makes it easier to read and
follow. Each paragraph in a text deals with an aspect of the topic you
are writing about.

Activity 1

a. Read each of the paragraphs below then write the topic of the
paragraph in a word or phrase.

b. One sentence in each paragraph does not fit in. Write out the
sentence that does not belong.

c. Say why it doesnt fit in.

1. When I first became an apprentice with Western Home Care I was
given an induction course on Health and Safety and fire awareness
training. I was trained to use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and
learned when and where I should wear protective clothing. There was a
great canteen there as well. I had training on how to work safely with
machinery and how to go about making a risk assessment. There were
also a number of fire drills to make so I knew what to do in the event of a

a. Paragraph Topic:

b. Sentence that does not fit in:

c. Sentence does not belong because:


Writing Task 8

2. The Give It A Go! initiative aims to increase awareness of the range
of nutritional and physical activity initiatives in the southern area. The
Minister said: The Give It A Go! Initiative is a great example of how
collaborative work can make such a positive contribution to peoples
lives by providing opportunities for learning, participation in physical
activity and for social interaction. The accident and emergency
department at the local hospital is closing.

a. Paragraph Topic:

b. Sentence that does not fit in:

c. Sentence does not belong because:


Writing Task 8

3. During Climate Change Week (12 18 March 2012), the Public Health
Agency is calling for people to make simple changes to their lifestyle -
both at home and in work - in a bid to reduce their carbon footprint and
improve quality of life for everyone. It is widely recognised that global
climate change is already having long-term health consequences, as
people are now being exposed to conditions which can result in illness
and death due to respiratory illness. These include asthma, heat-related
stress, the effects of flooding and colder weather, and insect-borne
diseases. MLA Mr Sammy Wilson thinks global warming is a con. Also,
increased exposure to UV radiation has led to more incidences of skin

a. Paragraph Topic:

b. Sentence that does not fit in:

c. Sentence does not belong because:


Writing Task 8

Activity 2 - Paragraph Writing

The following sentences or bits of sentences introduce the topic of the
paragraph. Complete the paragraphs.

Go to
and read the chapter on communication for help in completing this

1. One-to-one communication occurs when one person speaks to or
writes to another individual.

2. Group communication follows slightly different rules to
communication in one-to-one situations.

3. Care staff communicate with people using services very frequently
and in a variety of ways.

4. A number of features of speech can affect the quality and
effectiveness of verbal communication.

5. Care practitioners spend a lot of time writing because

6. We communicate non-verbally through body-language.

7. The success of communication in health and social care is
influenced by a number of factors.

8. Alcohol and drugs impair a persons ability to communicate

9. A person may have a hearing, visual or speech impairment.

10. There are ways that technology can aid communication.


Writing Task 8

Activity 3 Paragraph Writing

Divide the following text into five paragraphs. Write out the text using paragraphs for
each new section. Remember to think about where one topic ends and another

Positive and negative influences on communication - The physical environment can affect
the quality of communication between people and may even put individuals off making an effort
to communicate with one another in the first place. In particular, the nature of the setting in
which communication takes place, noise levels, the arrangement of seating, the quality of
lighting, and the amount of available space and time can all impact on the effectiveness of
interaction and communication. People who use care services may interact and communicate
with care professionals in their own homes, in community facilities, such as GP practices or day
centres, in residential care settings or in institutional settings like hospitals. Where a setting is
very busy and there is little privacy, communication may be inhibited. An individual may not feel
comfortable talking about themselves or aspects of their life or personal situation in a public
environment. However, where efforts are made to ensure the person can talk in private without
being overheard, interaction and communication is likely to be more effective. Similarly, people
may become isolated and have few opportunities to interact and communicate socially in
domestic, community or residential settings that lack comfortable, well-organised communal
spaces. It is important to ensure that care settings have private spaces, as well as areas where
people can meet and talk more publicly. An environment where there is a lot of noise, either
from within or outside of the building, can be a barrier to effective communication. Background
noise from a television or radio, from people talking close by or from traffic passing outside a
window can make communication very difficult for someone with a hearing impairment, for
example. This can be a problem for people who use hearing aids as the background noise is
amplified to the same level as the voice of the person speaking to them. The way that the seats
are organised in a room can have a big impact on interaction and communication. Seating that
is organised in rows or a line around the outside of the room is less likely to promote interaction
than seating organised into small clusters, for example. The seating in a room should be
organised in a way that brings people into relatively close proximity, promoting eye contact.
While people need to be close enough to interact and talk, seating arrangements shouldnt
cause the room to feel cramped.

Writing Task 8

Activity 3 - Positive and negative influences on communication

First paragraph

Second paragraph

Third paragraph

Fourth paragraph

Fifth paragraph


Writing Task 9 Mind Mapping


Sixty Minute Makeover

You have been offered the chance to have a thirty minute makeover
on your home /or a flat that you are renting/buying. The makeover
team can change three areas for you. Select three areas you would
like changed and use the mind map below to explore your ideas on:

How things are at the present
How you would like your home/flat to look when the makeover team
have finished.

When planning a project/essay/article etc always mind map your ideas.
Mind mapping is a process whereby we start with a topic and explore
ideas the way our mind would.

It is an excellent way of gathering ideas and recording them until they
are needed.

For example if we start with the topic HOUSE we begin by thinking of
the different rooms etc. This is how our thinking might look.


Writing Task 9

Sixty Minute Makeover

Next look at how you might describe how these rooms look at the
moment. Take them one at a time.

For example, how would you describe the hallway?

Think Hallway

Is there a colour scheme? What is it?
How is it decorated? Is there a coat rail? Or a mirror? Or a plant?
Is the hallway well lit - or not? Think why or why not e.g. does the
front door have glass panes to allow in light?
Are the walls papered or painted?
Is the floor carpeted or wooden with a runner?
What effect does this have?
What would you like to change?
What, if anything, would you like to keep?

You can repeat the process for each of the rooms.


Writing Task 10 Structuring an Extended Text

Using the mind map below about things that improve the quality of life
for those in care write an essay of 500 words or more that expands on
these topics. Read the mind map before you start and add your own
thoughts to it if you want.

Remember to include:
Title - Your title should be a word, phrase or short sentence that tells
the reader what the essay is about.
Introduction - first paragraph - where you outline the purpose of
your essay and say what it will be about.
Subheadings - to highlight clearly for your reader what the
paragraph is about.
Paragraphing - to separate your points.
Conclusion - final paragraph - you might want to state the
importance of ensuring all these factors are addressed in the delivery
of care


Writing Task 11 Proof Read and Revise Writing for Accuracy
and Meaning

Use the MAPS* method to revise and proof-read your writing

The land of proof-reading

Using the MAPS method, follow the proof-reading path to check your

1. Begin at the city of Meaning does it say what you want to say?
Is this what you meant? Does it make sense? Have you missed any
words or ideas out, or put in more than you want? (check your mind
map) Meaning is the most important place to start.


2. Travel to the town of Agreement. This is about making sure the
different parts of your writing agree. Does the subject and verb
agree (eg, we were not we was)? Is the tense consistent? Does it
hang together properly and flow?

3. Carry on to the place called Punctuation. Have you written in
sentences and have you put full stops in? This is the capital city so it
is especially important to check your capital letters! Check any other
punctuation while youre here.

4. Your final destination is the scary city of Spelling. Many people
find this a daunting place to go, but its worth the visit. Dont forget to
bring your dictionary and spell-checker. When you leave your
journey across the land of Proof-Reading is complete. You just need
to move on to the neighbouring country of Final Copy.
*Margaret Adams


Writing Task 12 Writing and Extended Text: Report on Your

Write a report on your organisation here are some ideas to help you
write the report. You do not need to use them all. Your report should be
two A4 pages long.

Give a general overview of the organisation. Give its name and address
and say when the organisation started. How many years has the
organisation been in operation? Talk about the kind of work it carries

History / Background of the Organisation
Say how the organisation got started. Who formed it? How many staff
did the business start off with how many staff does it have now? Did
the organisation start off with having just a few staff and develop
into one that has a large workforce has it stayed the same? Is the
business still in the hands of the original owners or has it been taken
over or sold on? Who used to run it and who runs it now? What
kind of contracts did the organisation start off with? How have these
contracts changed over the years? Has your organisation achieved any
awards? If so what were they and what were they for?

The Organisation Now
What kind of work is currently being carried out by the organisation?
Is work carried out by the organisation in different towns in various areas
of Northern Ireland/Ireland/UK etc. or does it carry out most of its work
locally? Does the organisation advertise? If so where? Does it have a
website? Describe it and give the web address? Does the
organisation have a logo? What is it and what does it stand for?

Your Role Within the Organisation
Say how long you have worked for the organisation? Give the title of
your job and talk about your work in a typical day. Has your work role
changed over the time you have been with the business? What were

your responsibilities when you started with the organisation and what are
they now? Are you responsible for helping to train new members of staff
in, for example, health and safety issues? How many people
are in your team? What are the jobs of the other team members? Give
details of the types of contracts / jobs you have helped to carry out (Do
not give confidential client information). Have you had any interesting or
unusual experiences while working for the company?

Qualifications / Training
What kind of qualifications and training do you need for your job? What
training have you had so far? What training are you undertaking at
present and what qualifications do you hope to gain when
you finish your training? Talk about workplace training and college
training and give the titles of the qualifications you have and the
qualifications you are working towards. Give details of the training within
your organisation. Do you have regular training sessions? Are you
required to wear protective clothing at work? If so, say when and why?

What are your views about the organisation? What do you enjoy about
working there? Where would you like to see yourself in 5/10 years time?


Writing Task 13 Writing an Essay / Article

Audience and Purpose
The two most important things you need to think about with any written
activity are:

1. Who you are writing for (audience)
2. Why you are writing (purpose).

Audience and purpose will affect what you write and the way you write it.

Research and Make Notes on Topic
Gather information to use in your article from e.g.:

Course Books and Handouts
Internet (some websites are listed at the end of this book)

Mind Map your ideas OR list points FOR and AGAINST if you are writing
a balanced argument.

Essay / Article Structure
Essays or articles have:

1. An introduction - or opening paragraph

2. A main section or middle paragraphs - where all your points are

3. A conclusion

With a good essay structure you catch and hold the attention of your
reader as your writing will be easy to follow and understand.


Writing Task 13

Introduction (Opening Paragraph)
This is your first opportunity to catch the attention of your reader. If you
make a good first impression the reader will want to continue reading; so
make sure your introduction is interesting and engaging.

Here are some ways to make your opening paragraph interesting.

Rhetorical Question
Rhetorical questions engage the reader by making them think about
what is being asked e.g.

Are we meeting the needs of older people in the community?

Rhetorical questions also directly address the reader giving the
impression their opinion is important.

A quotation from an expert in the topic you are writing about will help
persuade the reader round to that point of view,
e.g. Health Minister, Mr Poots stated: Smoking still kills almost 2,300
people each year in Northern Ireland and thousands more are living with
debilitating illnesses as a result of their addiction.

Dramatic Statement
Dramatic statements immediately grab the attention of the reader.
The Health Service is failing the Elderly!

Balanced Argument
A balanced argument looks at the different views on a topic and will
encourage the reader to see your writing as even handed and unbiased
e.g. Many people argue that services should be delivered to people in
their own homes whereas others believe we still need hospital and
residential care.


Writing Task 13

Writing an Essay Balanced Argument

Is Global Warming a Result of Human Activity or is it a Natural

Opening Paragraph - 1 - Introduction
In the opening paragraph you will need to address different views about
the topic and provide more detail, perhaps giving your own point of view
or the issues you intend to address. Many people argue that global
warming is a result of human activity while others believe it is a result
of the earths natural processes. I believe that the scientific evidence that
global warming is a result of human activity is now too strong to be

Main Section
The middle section of a long piece of writing is made up of paragraphs.
A paragraph is a series of sentences on the same topic. Each paragraph
deals with a different aspect of the main essay subject.

1. Say what the paragraph is about in a topic sentence (a sentence that
introduces the topic)
2. Explain the point in more detail.
3. Give an example to illustrate the point

Paragraph 2
Topic sentence: Former Northern Ireland Environment Minister, Sammy
Wilson thinks that man-made climate change is a con.

Explanation: He believes that climate change is a result of natural
processes and that the billions of pounds spent worldwide attempting to
reduce carbon emissions will not solve the problem of climate change.

Example: Mr. Wilson is convinced that the money spent on reducing
carbon emissions is depriving developing countries of vital funds to
tackle famine, HIV and other diseases.


Paragraph 3 (Opposing View)
Topic sentence: However recent scientific studies of the Antarctic and
Arctic have shown that changes to the climate are due to human activity

Explanation: The new study of the North and South Poles by the
Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia shows that
temperature increases to Antarctica in the past 60 years cannot be
attributed to natural variations.

Example: The coastal areas of the Antarctic has been most affected by
global warming which has resulted in the disintegration of ice shelves
and the speeding up of the flow of glaciers to the sea.

Conclusions are just as important as introductions. In your conclusion
you will want to sum up your arguments into an effective ending for the
reader to consider.

Conclusions should:
Address the original question / topic
Briefly summarise the main points of both arguments
Not introduce a new idea

In the final sentence you might want to:
Ask a rhetorical question
Request some sort of action
Present a warning
Give your own personal view
Consider what might happen in the future


Last Paragraph - 4
In conclusion, many believe that man-made global warming does not
exist. They believe that the billions of pounds being spent worldwide in
an attempt to halt global warming are diverting vital funds from
developing countries where they could be used to address health and
education. However, recent scientific studies indicate that global
warming is, indeed, a result of human activity and that immediate action
is needed to reverse the damage that has already been caused. Can we
really afford not to listen?


Writing Task 13


Write a four paragraph essay giving a balanced argument on the topics

Writing a four paragraph essay will give you practice at writing:

an effective introduction
a paragraph on the first viewpoint
a paragraph on the opposing viewpoint
an effective conclusion


Work related stress
Choose a barrier to communication and discuss how to overcome it
Are we meeting the care needs of the Elderly in our local
Reflective Practice does it make a difference?


Writing Task 13

Linking Words and Phrases

When writing an article we use different words and phrases to link
together our ideas. We use them to help build an argument, compare
and contrast ideas and to sum up what we have said.

Firstly Also Therefore No one can
In addition As well as this Moreover Some would
It might be said Consequently As a result Convincingly
What is more For that reason Besides Importantly

In comparison As well as Just as Also
Similarly At the same
Equally Likewise
In the same way Both Despite Those who
disagree may
But Although However In contrast
On the other
Though Although Nevertheless
Conversely Opponents of
this view would
On the contrary Still
On the other
In opposition to
All the same Nonetheless

In conclusion To conclude In summary To sum up
To summarise Finally To outline the
main points
To recap On balance I
Lastly To finish


Writing Task 14 Formal Letter: Letter of Complaint

Letter of Complaint

Effective complaints are more likely to produce better outcomes. Letters
are the most reliable way to complain although complaints may be made
using emails or phone calls.

The most effective complaints are:

Brief short, sharp letters can be quickly read and understood.

Professional Well written and professionally presented letters will
command respect and will be taken more seriously.

Factual they give the reader all the facts they need to process the
complaint (names, dates, times, what you want to happen etc).

Constructive Even if you are angry they should contain positive
statements and suggestions. A positive approach is more likely to
have a positive outcome.

Cooperative No matter how aggrieved you feel it is important to
remember that aggression will not encourage a positive response. A
positive letter will encourage the reader to respond positively.


Writing Task 14

Letter of Complaint


Your address
Telephone number


(of the person you are writing to)

Dear (name of person or Dear Sir/Madam if you dont know the persons name)

Heading alerting the reader immediately to the main issues of the letter, briefly
outlining the problem and relevant details or reference numbers)

Introduction State the facts simply

Main Section of Letter Give relevant details. Let the reader know what you would
like to happen (make a positive request for help in sorting out the problem) to which
the reader can respond.

It is best to end by including positive comments about the organisation (such as
previous good service).

Even if you are very angry it is best to end on a complimentary note.
Even if the complaint is long and complicated, the letter should still be short and to
the point. Further explanations, notes, should be attached.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely (if you know the persons name) Yours faithfully (if not).

Your signature

Your name printed clearly


Writing Task 14
Letter of complaint - example

24 Anystreet
BT29 6AB
Tel: 0161 349812

March 2012

Mr Joe Bloggs
Customer Services Manager
Bakery Supplies
Thistown Industrial Estate
BT29 4WR

Dear Mr Bloggs

Supply of Bread to Thistown Residential Home Order Number 1234

Supply of Bread to our Residential Home as per order number 1234, has been
arriving later and later over the past month.

The most recent delivery on 16
March 2012, didnt arrive until nearly 9.00am.
Could you please follow this up for me as it is important that we receive our supply
by 7.30am in order to prepare breakfast for the residents.

I know this isnt normal practice as we have been receiving break from you since
2009 and it was always delivered on or around the agreed time of 7.30am.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

Jane Brown



Writing Task 14

Activity 1 - Writing a letter of complaint

You are a self-employed trainer, providing moving and handling training to care
homes. A recent invoice you sent was ignored as was the reminder you also sent.
Write a letter of complaint to your customer outlining the issues and reminding him of
your policy to pursue outstanding debts through the courts.

Remember always be professional, concise, factual, constructive and co-operative.


Writing Task 14

Complaints Letter Proofreading Check List

1 I considered my audience.
2 I considered the purpose (my reason for writing).
3 Letter was written in formal letter format with proper
spelling, punctuation and grammar.

4 It was clear and concise. Any extra information was
attached rather than included in the letter.

5 It contained all the relevant facts and information
needed to resolve my complaint.

6 It included positive statements and suggestions.
7 The tone of my letter was thoughtful and co-operative.



My parents taught me how to listen to
everybody before I made up my own mind.
When you listen, you learn. You absorb like a
sponge-and your life becomes so much better
than when you are just trying to be listened to
all the time.
Steven Spielberg


Speaking and listening

Speaking and listening are vitally important parts of your everyday
communication within health and social care.

In your day to day work, you are required to speak with a range of
people, including your line manager and colleagues; clients / service
users and their families; other professionals or workers from other
organisation and visitors who may be with your client / service user.

You are also required to provide others with important information and
respond to information given to you by others, either in written or verbal
form, for example recording notes, attending team meetings, making
phone calls, contributing to case reviews or sharing information with
other professionals to support the assessment or review process.


Speaking and Listening Task 1 - How Well do I Listen?


Do this self-assessment exercise to see if there anything you would
change about the way you listen. Think carefully about your

PAYING ATTENTION Often Sometimes Hardly
Do you not bother to listen carefully
and pick out relevant information?

Are you inattentive when others are

Do you forget to show you are
listening e.g. by providing feedback
such as Yes I see?

Do you stay focused or are you
easily distracted by things that are
going on around you?

Do you show irritation when
someone is speaking to you?


Do you only bother to listen properly
if you are speaking to a friend or
someone you like?

If you do not find a topic interesting
do you stop paying attention to the

Do you need to like a speakers
appearance before you will listen to


Does the way a person speaks
sometimes put you off?

Do you get bored if someone talks
for a long time?


Do you allow others time to finish

Do you assume you know what
others are going to say next?

Do you interrupt if you think
someones conversation is boring?

When others are speaking, do you
interrupt and start talking about
something else?


Speaking and Listening Task 2 How Well do I Speak?

RESPONDING TO OTHERS Often Sometimes Hardly
When you are asked a question do
you mumble a reply?

If you think a question is silly do you
give a silly answer?

Is your non-verbal communication
(body language) stand-offish or
aggressive when you do not like the
person you are talking to?

Do you just cut in when others are
speaking rather than say excuse me
or use other appropriate phrases to

Do you speak over the top of others
rather than taking turns to speak?

Do you ignore the opinions of others?


If you are asked for information about
your job do you only give enough
information to get the manager off
your back?

Do you think it is not worthwhile
trying to speak clearly because
nobody ever listens to you anyway?

Do use an aggressive tone?


Do you not bother to ask questions
when there is something you do not


At a meeting or in a discussion do
you let others do all the talking?

Do you think it is not worthwhile
taking the trouble to research
information to prepare for
discussions or meetings?

Do you think it is a waste of time
putting ideas and information into its
proper order?


Speaking and Listening Task 3 - Speaking to Others

Chatting to friends or friendly people in a relaxed atmosphere is usually
fairly easy.
However, speaking to people in a formal or work situation, or speaking
to someone we do not know very well, or who is angry or upset, or has
different ideas from us, can sometimes be very difficult. In these
situations it is important to plan what we want to say.

One to One

Look at the situations below and jot down some notes on how you
would go about planning for these.

Meeting and looking after a visiting

Speaking with an angry client /
service user or a family member

A colleague is acting in a manner
that is discriminatory towards the
client / service user

Explaining the use of personal
protective equipment to a new
employee / student.


Speaking and Listening Task 4 - Using the Telephone

Telephones play an important role in you communicating with others in
the organisation and for the organisation to communicate with other
employees, the clients / service users and other professionals and
organisations. Phone calls at work are mainly formal and it is important
that the message you put across t is that you and your organisation is
professional, respectful and competent.

Making a Telephone Call
It is important when making a telephone call to speak clearly and use a
pleasant tone.

Give your own name and the name of your organisation [when
appropriate] and say why you are calling. Keep your message brief and
to the point. Include all the relevant information and do not include a lot
of unnecessary detail that will confuse the person you are calling.

Task 1

Which of these greetings do you think is correct?

1. This is Mary whos that? The rota is wrong today and I wont be
finished on time.
2. Good morning. This is Mary from Home Care Services. Could I speak
to the Home Care Manager about todays rota please?

Task 2

Which of these greetings would you use to receive an incoming call in a
nursing home when you are on the evening shift?

1. Hello
2. Good Evening, Daffodil Care Home, Mary speaking, how can I help
3. Hello, were really busy at present; please call back in half an hour


Speaking and Listening Task 5 - Following Spoken

It is important to listen carefully to instructions so that work is carried out
properly and in a safe manner.

Instructions are not pieces of advice or suggestions about how to carry
out a task.

Instructions are about how a task MUST be carried out so that the end
result is a task completed safely and to the proper standards.

Instructions use words that give orders e.g. do, or do not etc.


Which of these are instructions?

1. It is better to encourage a client / service user to do as much as they
can for him / herself

2. Do not dispose of sharps in a house hold waste bag

3. Wash hands thoroughly before engaging in food preparation

4. Report any concerns you have about a clients well being

5. Judith prefers to work in the area in which she lives


Speaking and Listening Task 6 - Listening for instructions


Food Safety

Often instructions are given along with other information so it is
important to listen carefully and pick out the actual instructions from the
other information.

Jennys manager is talking her through some food safety issues that are
relevant to her role in preparing food for clients / service users in their
own home.

Read the information given to her and underline or highlight the
instructions (i.e. the things she must or must not do).

First of all I want you to think about the health and safety issues you will
need to bear in mind. For example, did you know that food
contamination can occur in a number of ways and can cause illness,
injury or make food unfit for consumption? So you need to be very
careful in all aspects of food preparation especially when working with
high risk or vulnerable groups, such as older people or those who may
be ill and have a reduced immune system.

In order to prevent cross contamination, your personal hygiene must be
of the highest order wash hands thoroughly, ensure your uniform is
clean and always cover cuts with a highly visible waterproof dressing.
Use utensils such as spoons or tongs, rather than hands, to handle food.
Cooking food thoroughly to a minimum core temperature of 75c will
ensure most bacteria are destroyed. Do not reheat food more than once
and any uneaten reheated food should be thrown away. Hot food should

never be placed in a fridge without having cooled significantly, as this
could raise the temperature of the fridge.

Ideally, raw and cooked foods should be stored in separate fridges. If
this is not possible, remember raw below cooked always. Most food
packages are labelled with a use by or best before date. It is not
acceptable to serve food that has exceeded its use by date. Such food
should be discarded. Best before dates are often an indication that the
food will be at its premium quality if stored correctly until that date.


Speaking and Listening Task 7 - Team Meetings

Sometimes you will need to take part in meetings:

Team Meetings - with your own team discussing your work with your

Informal Meetings with some members of the team to discuss
something that is of concern to you.

One to one discussions with team members to discuss some
concerns regarding a client or how to address an issue that you face.

Team meetings can be formal or informal. Formal meetings will have a
formal agenda, given out before a meeting, to let you know what is being
discussed. Good speaking and listening skills will help you to take part
in formal and informal meetings.

Good speaking and listening skills are:
Knowing what to say know what the meeting is about.
Knowing when to say something everyone should have a chance to
Knowing how to say something i.e. use appropriate formal /
informal language.
Maintain good eye contact with others.
Speak clearly in order to be heard by everyone.

It is important to listen carefully to what has already been said and think
about how you can add to what others are saying.

Responding to another person when they have different ideas:

It is important that any response you give to another persons point of
view is polite and considerate.
Everyone has the right to hold a viewpoint, even if you do not agree
with it.
It is important too, to look out for what is fact and what is opinion.
Someones point of view is just their opinion and you are as much
entitled to your point of view as they are.

Turn Taking
It is important to respect the turn taking rights of others at meetings and
during discussions. We must allow time for others to speak.

Remember To Prepare for Meetings:
Know what the meeting is about.
Think about the questions you are likely to be asked?
Think about the questions you will want to ask?


Which of the following points are important to remember when taking
part in a discussion?

Important Yes / No
Listen carefully to pick out the main

Have some cool jokes you can tell
to impress the Manager

Ignore all other distractions that
may occur.

Watch out for body language,
yours and others.

Look at the person who is

Take note of important details such
as names, places, dates, times and
so on.

Have a smart answer ready for
anyone who does not agree with

Respect other peoples right to
express their points of view.

Ask for clarification if there is
something you do not understand.

Give reasons why you hold a
certain point of view.


Speaking and Listening Task 8 - Group Discussion:

Topic: How important is good communication in the workplace?

Types of Communication
Interaction with clients, supervisors, clients families and other
members of team
Care plans, domiciliary care record of visit books
Instructions written or verbal
Emails internal and external
Memos within organisation
Notices / Posters

Good Communication (examples)
Effective interaction with clients and colleagues
Co-operating effectively with supervisors and others
Giving and receiving information effectively
Pleasant and helpful telephone manner
Accurate records kept up to date
Information passed on promptly to relevant people
Good non-verbal communication (body language, eye contact)

Results of good communication
Staff will work well as a team
Work will be completed correctly and on time.
Clients receive a high standard of care.
More contracts

Consequences of poor communication
Without effective workplace communication the machinery of an
organisation would break down
Clients suffer
Staff will feel dissatisfied and leave
Business may fail

Good communication and the sharing of information are essential for the
success of an organisation.

Without it a business would become disorganised, clients and their
families would become dissatisfied and workers would become
demoralised and the company would fail.


Choose a topic and question to discuss. Arrange a time to have your
discussion. The discussion will take 15-20 minutes.

Research the topic and make out a set of notes. You will want to include
relevant issues you would like to explore and questions you would like to

Some Topic Suggestions:
1. Why is it important to make sure that clients have input into their
2. What are the implications for social care workers of the Governments
plans to reduce the number of hospital beds and residential care beds?
3. Why is training and development important for social care workers?
4. Work related stress
5. Choose a barrier to communication discuss your experience of it in
working with clients / carers / colleagues and how it could be overcome.

You will be assessed on:
Speaking clearly
Keeping to the point
Giving relevant information
Listening and responding to others
Using positive body language
Keeping the discussion going.

Think about:
What the issues are
How they are being addressed at the moment
What I think should happen to improve the situation
Questions I would like to ask the group


Speaking and Listening Task 9 - Group Discussion: Rate
Your Performance Checklist

(1 = very weak; 10 = very strong)
No Skill Grade 1-10
1 I researched and made notes on the topic for

2 I listened carefully to others to identify relevant

3 I followed and paid careful attention to longer
explanations, instructions, etc

4 I answered detailed/extended questions
5 I dealt appropriately with criticism noting the
points made and accepting that others will not
necessarily agree with my point of view

6 I offered constructive criticism i.e. I suggested
ways that others might make improvements.

7 I spoke clearly and confidently to suit the

8 I asked questions to obtain detailed information.
9 I expressed facts clearly.
10 I made sure the information I provided was in the
proper order.

11 I developed, clarified, or confirmed information
provided by others

12 I made relevant contributions & helped move
discussion forward

13 I adapted my contributions to suit the audience,
context, purpose, situation

14 I used appropriate phrases for interruption or to
change the topic.

15 supported my arguments and opinions with

16 I made sure that my attitude was reassuring to
others e.g. I used appropriate body language,
phrases etc.


Speaking and Listening Task 10 - One Minute Talks

To practice for your 4 minute short talk, identify a topic you have chosen
yourself - and speak for one minute on it.

Plan your talk use mind mapping to help you plan

Remember your audience and purpose

Will you use formal language, informal language a mixture of both?

Have an introduction - a main section where you develop your ideas
and a conclusion.

Support opinions and arguments with evidence e.g. facts / quotes

Clarify information e.g. technical terms

Speak with enthusiasm.

Stick to the topic

Vary tone of voice to keep the listeners interest

Use good body language open and relaxed

Maintain good eye contact


Speaking and Listening Task 10

One Minute Talk: Rate your Performance Checklist

(1 = very weak; 10 = very strong)
No Skill Grade 1-10
1 I used notes or PowerPoint slides to help structure
talk and to introduce each new section

2 I used appropriate formal and/or informal language
according to audience and purpose

3 I spoke clearly and was easily understood

4 My voice was at the right pitch and everyone heard

5 I varied the tone so that my audience did not get

6 I remembered all the points I wanted to make

7 I made the points in the proper order

8 I supported the arguments and opinions I made with
(e.g. facts, quotes, statistics)

9 I clarified difficult words or technical terms or phrases

10 I spoke at the right speed not too quickly

11 My body language was relaxed

12 I maintained good eye contact with my audience

13 I did not read from a script

14 Talk was completed within the timescale

15 I invited questions from the audience


Researching Information Using ICT

Be clear about the topic you are exploring.
Know the purpose of your research. For example, are you gathering
information to write an article or a report? What is your topic?
List the web addresses that are useful to you. Say why they were of
use. Use the proforma page provided which shows evidence of
your research.
List the web addresses that you explored but were of no use to you.
Say why this was the case. Again enter these on to the page
provided. Include title, author of document and date of publication.
Find two 500 word documents for L2 on your chosen topic.
Read and extract the main points from the documents for the
purpose you have intended.


Useful Websites
Web Address Was useful because


Appendix 1 - Relevance to QCF H&SC Qualifications

If learners are also working towards one of the QCF Health and Social
Care Qualifications listed below, they may be producing work which
could be used as evidence towards some of the required learning
outcomes. Where there is potential evidence from a task the unit will be

Relevant QCF Qualifications
Level 2 Diploma in Health & Social Care
Level 2 Certificate in Induction to Adult Social Care in Northern Ireland


Level 2 Certificate in Induction into Adult Social Care
Tasks Units Assessment
Reading Task 5 Principles of Personal
Development in adult social care
Writing Task 8 activity
Principles of communication in
adult social care settings
Writing Task 10 Understand person-centred
approaches in adult social care
Writing Task 12 Principles of Personal
Development in adult social care
Understand the role of the social
care worker
Writing Task 13 Depending on the topic chosen, the following units may
have elements addressed
Principles of communication in adult social care
Principles of Personal Development in adult social
care settings
Understand health and safety in health and social
Principles of safeguarding and protection in health
and social care

Writing Task 14 Principles of safeguarding and
protection in health and social

Speaking and Listening
Task 6
Understand health and safety in
health and social care

7.1, 7.2
Speaking and Listening
Task 7
Understand the role of the social
care worker
1.1, 1.2
Speaking and Listening
Task 8
Principles of communication in
adult social care settings

1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 3.1


Level 2 Diploma in Health and Social Care
Tasks Units Assessment
Reading Task 5 Intro to Personal Development in
health, social care and childrens
and young peoples settings
Writing Task 8 activity
Introduction to communication in
health, social care or childrens
and young peoples settings
Support effective communication
with individuals with a sensory
Writing Task 10 Implement person centred
approaches in health and social
Writing Task 12 Intro to Personal Development in
health, social care and childrens
and young peoples settings
The role of the health and social
care worker
Writing Task 13 Depending on the topic chosen, the following units may
have elements addressed
Introduction to communication in health, social
care or childrens and young peoples settings
Intro to Personal Development in health, social
care and childrens and young peoples settings
Contribute to health and safety in health and
social care
Principles of safeguarding and protection in health
and social care

Writing Task 14 Principles of safeguarding and
protection in health and social

Speaking and Listening
Tasks 1 & 2
Intro to Personal Development in
health, social care and childrens
and young peoples settings
2.2, 4.2
Speaking and Listening
Task 6
Contribute to health and safety in
health and social care

6.1, 6.2
Speaking and Listening
Task 7
The role of the health and social
care worker
1.1, 1.2
Speaking and Listening
Task 8
Introduction to communication in
health, social care or childrens
and young peoples settings
1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 3.1

Northern Ireland Social Care Council
Floor, Millennium House
19-25 Great Victoria Street

Telephone: 028 9041 7600

This resource is free to download as a PDF file from the NISCC website Material within this resource may be reproduced for training
and learning purposes only. Copies can be made available in a range of
different formats by contacting the Communications Team at the above

NISCC November 2012