Skills that Work – Workforce Materials for Literacy Programs
This project of Literacy Link South Central resulted in the formation of a manual that provides skills-based activities that were developed through surveys with area employers. Identified skill sets are articulated with the coinciding Essentials Skills. Review a 15-page sample document at ( The manual is available for $35.

Tools for the Trade
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Developed by Cypress Hills Regional College in Saskatchewan, this workbook of authentic workplace materials provides guided learning activities focusing on ES levels 1 through 3. Occupational activities can be adapted for learners with independence goals.


ABC Life Literacy – Math Literacy
ABC Life Literacy has produced a series of math literacy tip sheets that can be downloaded at Who Needs Math? provides a useful list of the many ways we use math skills every day. Literacy practitioners who are looking for ideas to help them develop Numeracy focused learning activities and demonstrations should check this site out.

Information on Document Use
Document Use has been identified as one of the most important Essential Skills in today’s information age. The following are helpful resources that can be ordered through SkillPlan (

Evetts, Julian. Document Literacy: A Guide for Workplace Educators and Instructors (1996). SkillPlan, BC Construction Industry Skills Improvement Council.

Fownes, Lynda. The Language of Documents: A Guide to Information Display in the Workplace (1999). SkillPlan, BC Construction Industry Skills Improvement Council.

( This site hosts a lot of information. The Libraryor Tools links offer comprehensive information on programs, publications, and ES tools.

New Zealand Literacy Portal
( This comprehensive site offers international links to a variety of adult literacy resources and research reports. The New Literacies link will direct you to ES and ES equivalent resources. Definitely worth surfing.

Taking it to the Street: Incorporating Essential Skills Into Your Training Agenda ( Western Canada Workplace Essential Skills Training Network (WWestnet) produced this final report and resource guide following their 2002 training session. It includes PowerPoint slides from each session, as well as helpful information for teaching. The Navigating Workplace Documents chapter is particularly interesting. There are several other useful WWestnet publications worth exploring.

Waterloo Region District School Board – Essential Skills Resources Order Form
WRDSB’s Office of Partnerships and Innovation contributed to the development of several ES resources that the folks at Literacy Link South Central highly recommend. The BIG Picture: Essential Skills for Life, Learning, and Work (Ontario Version).( is geared for secondary students; however, offers useful activities in pdf format. TheConstruction Zone, and On the Way to Work resource binders can be ordered by calling 519-570-0003 ext. 4220.

Vocational Information Center
( While this site is not ES specific, it does offer a long list of sites that relate to reading, literacy, time management and organization, critical thinking and problem solving, communication, and employment skills.

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