To achieve Step 5, individuals will be able to listen effectively and then be able to identify and record key information.
This builds on previous steps that focused on how to listen effectively to simple instructions, to be able to recall longer speech and to understand the different purposes of communication.
The building blocks of this step are learning how to:
In education, important information will be shared by many different people. It might be a tutor, a lecturer, a senior leader, or even a friend or peer. Important information could relate to a new topic, an exam or task, an opportunity for development or an upcoming event.
You will often listen to longer pieces of speech in school, college or university and there may be multiple points of interest within it. Effective note-taking is an important technique to develop because in some lessons, lectures or seminars you might not be given supporting documents. Therefore, being able to select the most important information will be crucial to your understanding. You will also need to return to your notes in the future when revising or revisiting certain topics so ensuring they are presented in a clear way is key.
In the workplace, instructions and plans are often discussed so that everyone understands what to do. Whether it be in a shop, building site or hospital, everyone needs to work together and follow the same procedures to ensure correctness and a consistent standard of work. Therefore, when listening to an update from your manager, a formal presentation in a training session or notes from a colleague, it’s important that you can select the key points and record them in an effective way. You might find that you have to return to your notes in the future if, for example, it’s not a task you do on a daily basis or if a colleague asks you for help.
In our wider lives, we might listen to a set of instructions, an explanation of how to do something or information about a specific activity or event and we need to ensure we have clarity around what was shared. If you and a group of friends were planning a surprise party, during discussions about the event it would be important to record important information so that you are able to correctly follow through on the tasks you have been given. If you are unable to make effective notes or they are not structured in a sensible way, you won’t understand what you need to do and it could cause disagreements with others.
To best practise this step of Listening, apply what you have learnt to a real-life situation. Choose one or more of the activities below, remind yourself of the key points and strategies in the step, and have a go!
To teach this step:
This is a step that lends itself to regular practice in the classroom setting, and once mastered will support learning. It also lends itself well to assessment. The teacher can:
This step lends itself well to being assessed through a simple exercise: Give learners the challenge of listening to a sustained presentation on a relevant topic and set them the challenge of making notes as they listen.
Afterwards, the teacher can check whether they have secured the step by reviewing the quality and accuracy of the notes they have made. Alternatively, learners could be given a short test of the key facts, with access to their notes so that if they have recorded the information appropriately then it will be available to them.
This step is relevant to everyone who is working with others in the course of their work, whether colleagues, customers or partners.
To build this step in the work environment, managers could:
There are plenty of opportunities for building this skill in the workplace:
For those already employed, this step is best assessed through observation. For instance:
During the recruitment process, this step could be assessed by:
We work with a wide range of organisations, who use the Skills Builder approach in lots of different settings – from youth clubs, to STEM organisations, to careers and employability providers.
We have a lot of materials available to support you to use the Skills Builder Universal Framework with the individuals you work with, including:
We also do a lot of work with organisations who join the Skills Builder Partnership to build the Universal Framework into their work and impact measurement systems. You can find out a lot more using the links below.
As a parent or carer, you might be thinking about how best to support your children to build their essential skills. The good news is that there is lots that you can do that will have a big impact, including:
We’ve developed a whole series of tools and resources to help parents to build these skills, including:
There is also content for older children and young people, including short activities and reflections that they can complete alone, or with you.