BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English – Reader 4
This reader contains nine original stories about human rights written specifically for adults who read at the grade 4.5 to 6 reading level.
BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English – Reader 4 is a part of the B.C. Open Textbook project. Open textbooks are instructional resources created and shared in ways so that more people have access to them. Open educational resources (OER) are teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others. The book is openly licensed using a Creative Commons license, and is offered in various e-book formats free of charge.
This reader contains nine original stories written specifically for adults on the topic of human rights. Each story mirrors a chapter in the accompanying course pack. New vocabulary terms are set in bold throughout each story, and then summarized and defined in a Glossary found in the appendix. Font size and line spacing can be adjusted in the online view, and have been enhanced for the PDF version for easier reading. This reader has been reviewed by subject experts from colleges and universities. This reader is one of a series of six readers, is roughly equivalent to grades 4.5 to 6 in the K-12 system.
The first story is about the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the ninth is based on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s quote: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The remaining seven stories are about Canadian historical figures.
This reader adds a valuable tool to the kit compiled by all effective ABE instructors. Low-level adult readers and their instructors face difficult challenges finding reading materials that attract the interest of adults while being written at levels that they can cover independently. Adding to the value is that BC Reads readers hold the most open Creative Commons license allowed. That means that learners can modify any of the content to adapt to their interests, and instructors can freely copy, paste, and also modify content to meet the needs of their learners. Passages in the stories are simple to read but they invite natural adult reading rhythms that keep them from sounding “childish” or mechanical.
Significant in this product is the always-timely theme it covers: human rights. Students not only read about the topic from individual characters in each story; they are also invited to write about human rights and how it applies to them, using helpful organizers in the reflection process. There are skills-development exercises for each chapter to increase ability in word-recognition, reading comprehension, writing (through summarization), vocabulary knowledge, grammar and world knowledge. Besides usefulness for classroom instruction, the resource could be used in professional development/ study circles, for example on how to use isolated skill questions in a creative and interactive way in the classroom.
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