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Title: Reading%20and%20Writing%20for%20the%20Workplace


1
Reading and Writing for the Workplace
  • Maxine McCormick
  • Contemporary MH

2
Needs in the Workplace
  • 7000 students leave school per day
  • 93 million adults score lower levels of national
    assessments of functional literacy skills
  • Not ready to master training to gain family
    sustaining employment
  • 65 of 2020 workforce will be below the academic
    requirements

3
Examples of Reading Concerns in the Workplace
  • Factory Workers who cannot read warnings can
    jeopardize safety
  • Hospital food-service workers with reading
    deficiencies cannot head instructions for
    critical diet or fasting requirements for
    patients
  • Difficulty following oral and written
    instructions and can cause costly mistakes

4
2 Main Types of Reading Related Skills for the
Workplace
  • Reading For Information Memos, Letters, Memos,
    Bulletin Boards, Manuals.
  • Locating Information Use graphic Information,
    Charts, Diagrams, Tables
  • Problem Solving. Listening, and Communicating

5
Reading for Information
  • Memos
  • Letters
  • E-mails
  • Bulletin Boards
  • Manuals and Procedural Documents
  • Employment Ads
  • Diagrams, Forms, Charts, and Graphs

6
4 Components to Reading
  • Comprehension asking questions, clarifying
    meaning, making connections, rereading
  • Vocabulary synonyms, antonyms, multiple meaning
    words, context clues
  • Alphabetics - phonics, word analysis, prefix,
    suffixes, base words, roots
  • Fluency- read aloud, echo reading, partner
    reading, collaborative, assessing fluency, timed
    readings

7
Instruction
  • Direct Explain, Model, Guided Practice
  • Explicit Workplace Skill Activities
  • Differentiated Learning without feeling
    pressured, Language Development
  • Relevant Engaged, Active, Real-World
  • Fluent Reads smoothly and pauses at the
    boundaries of meaningful phrases and clauses

8
Writing For Work
  • Forms, Reminders, Communicating News
  • Writing Instructions and Guidelines
  • Summarizing Information
  • Making Requests, Expressing Opinions, Raising
    Concerns, Preparing Reports, Proposing Ideas
  • Expressing Gratitude, Requesting Payment,
    Informing Customers, Complaints

9
Writing for Work Cont.
  • Personal Fact Sheet, Online Profile, Resume,
    Cover Letter, Job Application, Thank You Note,
    Follow Up Letter
  • Responding to Queries, Requesting Meetings,

10
Keys to Teaching Writing for Work
Writing for Work
4
  • Focus on Audience Establish the importance of
    audience in writing instruction / workplace
    writing
  • Promote Writing Give students a voice for
    personal and professional expression
  • Write to Communicate Understand writing as a
    soft skill how what we say and how we say it
    impacts how we are perceived
  • Create Authentic Experiences Develop strategies
    for creating authentic writing experiences for
    learners that are contextualized to the workplace

Details Tone Clarity
Organization
10
11
Focus on Audience
The Importance of Audience in Writing
Instruction
11
12
Why Focus on Audience?
Focus on Audience
  • How does who youre writing to affect the way you
    write?

12
13
Audience Reality Check
Focus on Audience
  • What does our demographic need in terms of
    writing instruction?
  • Focus should be on
  • Product We do not write 5-paragraph essays in
    our day-to-day lives
  • What is being communicated We typically
    communicate small amounts of information
  • How it is communicated We write in various
    formats for various audiences

13
14
Writing in the Real World
Focus on Audience
  • Does not involve the 5 traditional steps (plan,
    draft, edit, revise, publish)
  • Is rapid and responsive the typical employee
    sends/receives 115 emails per day 2.5 billion
    text messages are sent each day in the U.S.
  • Requires understanding of audience beyond just
    one instructor by 2014, the number of social
    networking accounts worldwide (consumer and
    business) is expected to reach 3.7 billion

Radicati, S. 2010 E-mail Statistics Report
Microsoft Exchange Server and Outlook Market
Analysis, 2010 - 2014
14
15
When we teach writing in the workplace, we must
focus on
Focus on Audience
Topic Purpose Audience Format
What information do I want to communicate? What is my reason for writing this? Who will read what I write? What is the best way to communicate my message?
15
16
Promote Writing
The Power of Writing to Establish Voice
16
17
Power of Voice
Promote Writing
  • What motivates people to write in non-academic,
    everyday life scenarios?
  • We write to share / communicate news
  • We write to persuade
  • We write to share our beliefs
  • We write to inform / instruct
  • We write to be heard
  • We write TO PARTICIPATE

17
18
How do we Write in the 21st Century?
Promote Writing
  • What motivates people to write in non-academic,
    everyday life scenarios?
  • Write to Share / Communicate News Wall Posts,
    e-mails, text messages, Twitter
  • Write to Persuade / Share our Beliefs Blogs, Web
    site comments/feedback
  • Write to Inform / Instruct / To Be Heard Text
    messages, e-mails

18
19
Open Forums for Written Communication
Promote Writing
  • Within 2 hours of this article being released,
    over 1,400 people had shared it in some way more
    than 8 people per minute

19
20
Write to Communicate
Understanding Writing as Soft Skill
20
21
Just as a picture is worth a thousand words,
your words paint a picture of you
Write to Communicate
  • WRITING is a SOFT SKILL TOO! Your writing
    communicates more than just information and
    ideas. In the workplace, writing demonstrates
  • your intelligence and understanding
  • your ability
  • your mood
  • your level of professionalism
  • your attention to detail

21
22
Intelligence and Understanding
Write to Communicate
validate
processes
leverage
synergies
strategic
facilitate
utilize
assets
transition
maximize
systematic
developmental
22
23
Professionalism Attention to Detail
Write to Communicate
  • When applying for a job, what you write and how
    you write it are often the first two things the
    employer knows about you.

23
24
Write to Communicate
mitch_rosin_at_mail.com
Interview
Dear Mr. Rosen, Yes, I can do a phone interview
for the editor position on Tuesday at 200. I was
hoping for an in-person interview, but this
should work. Call me at the number on my resume
and we can talk about the position.
24
25
Write to Communicate
department_admin_at_mail.com
Conference Call
Kyla, Please set up a conference call for a brief
meeting. Ive checked peoples calendars, and
both 23 pm and 45 pm EST work for all. Please
invite the entire Chicago team and include Sandy
and Bill on the invite. Thank you, Jeff
25
26
Create Authentic Experiences
Strategies for creating authentic, contextualized
writing experiences
26
27
Where to Find Authentic Scenarios
Create Authentic Experiences
  • Dont over think it! We write in the workplace
    every day when we
  • Make requests
  • Fill out forms
  • Provide updates
  • Summarize meetings and conversations
  • Identify and explain tasks
  • Look at both model examples and non-examples

27
28
Internal Workplace Writing
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
  • Examples
  • Completing forms (special instructions, etc.)
  • Communicating news and reminders
  • Making notes summarizing information
  • Writing instructions guidelines
  • Audience Colleagues, support staff
  • Tone Casual/professional
  • Skill Focus Clarity, details, organization

28
29
Communicating News Reminders Making
Announcements
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
  • Lacey is a human-resources assistant at a
    packaging company. She needs to create an
    announcement for an office fire drill. She
    decides an e-mail would be the best way to let
    all employees know about it. The examples on
    Handout 1A show how Lacey might do this.

29
30
Pre-Writing Plan
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
Topic Purpose Audience Format
What information do I want to communicate? What is my reason for writing this? Who will read what I write? What is the best way to communicate my message?
30
31
Example 1
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
  • Which of the following questions can readers
    answer using the information in Laceys e-mail?
  • A. When is the fire drill?
  • B. How do we get out of the building?
  • C. Can anyone stay in the building?
  • D. Where do we go after we leave the building?
  • E. Why are we having this fire drill?

31
32
Example 2
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
  • Which question cannot be answered based on this
    e-mail?
  • A. On which day will the drill take place?
  • B. Can anyone skip the drill?
  • C. Why is the drill being held?
  • D. Who can tell employees where the assembly
    areas are?
  • E. When was the previous fire drill held?

32
33
Why teach DETAILS in workplace writing?
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1A
33
34
Writing to Supervisors
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1B
  • Examples
  • Expressing opinions / raising concerns
  • Making requests
  • Responding to feedback
  • Preparing reports / presentations
  • Proposing ideas
  • Audience Supervisors, managers, foreman
  • Tone Professional
  • Skill Focus Clarity, details

34
35
Why teach TONE in workplace writing?
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 1B
35
36
Writing to Customers Clients
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 2A
  • Examples
  • Notifying customers of changes
  • Handling customer complaints / feedback
  • Expressing gratitude
  • Requesting payment or action
  • Audience External clients / customers
  • Tone Professional, friendly
  • Skill Focus Mechanics, details

36
37
Why teach CLARITY in workplace writing?
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 2A
37
38
Writing to Outside Organizations
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 2B
  • Examples
  • Requesting information
  • Offering feedback
  • Requesting meetings / introductions
  • Responding to queries
  • Audience Customers, potential employers
  • Tone Professional
  • Skill Focus Clarity, organization

38
39
Why teach ORGANIZATION in workplace writing?
Create Authentic Experiences Handout 2B
39
40
Writing for Work Rubric Handout 3
40
41
Writing for Work
41
42
Workplace Skills
  • Being Punctual
  • Being Cooperative, Respectful, Attitude
  • Practice Teamwork
  • Proactive, Positive Initiatives
  • Setting Priorities, Meeting Deadlines
  • Displaying Neatness and Organization
  • Respecting Communal Environment

43
Cont. Workplace Skills
  • Communicate Clearly and Appropriately, both
    informally and formally
  • Negotiating with Supervisors and Coworkers
  • Responding Appropriately to Criticism
  • Resolving Conflict
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