Out & About Mark Hancock & Annie McDonald

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Out & About

Mark Hancock & Annie McDonald

1st Bachillerato

Teaching Programme


1 Teaching Methodology

1.1 Theoretical Basis

1.2 What Out & About offers

1.3 Components

2 Objectives

3 Competences

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Out & About's contribution to acquiring competences

3.3 Competences in Out & About

3.4. Learning styles
4 Contents

4.1 Contents blocks

4.2 Minimum contents
5 Learning standards
6 Assessment

6.1 Presentation

6.2 Assessment criteria

6.3 Assessment in Out & About

6.4 Assessment tools in Out & About

6.5. Qualification criteria

7 Educational needs
7.1. Introduction to the concept of attention to diversity

7.2. Attention to diversity in Out & About

8 Development of teaching units
8.1 Contents

Block 1. Comprehension of oral texts

Block 2. Production of oral texts

Block 3. Comprehension of written texts

Block 4. Production of written texts

  • Linguistic knowledge

- Communication functions

- Vocabulary

- Syntactic-discursive contents

- Graphic patterns and sounds

- Classroom language

  • Learning strategies

  • Sociocultural and sociolinguistic aspects

8.2 Competences: Descriptors – Activities

8.3 Social awareness

8.4 Cross-curricular links

8.5 Assessment criteria

8.6 Contents - Assessment criteria - Competences



1.1 Theoretical Basis

Out & About is a Bachillerato teaching course for English, designed with two objectives in mind as set down by the syllabus at this stage of education and to ensure appropriate preparation by students for the tests they will have to do at the end of this stage, Evaluación Final de Bachillerato and Prueba de Acceso a la Universidad (PAU). This course provides students with not only solid linguistic training and help in terms of preparing for their exams, but also assists them in their transition into the adult world.

Designed for the Bachillerato and its final exams, Out & About offers a clear, thorough grammar syllabus which students have numerous opportunities to practise actively as well as reference sections for studying and revising. The questions which come with the texts have also been designed in line with the models used in PAU until present and the (writing) activities come with a detailed, step by step guide for students to be able to successfully develop the types of texts they are asked for in those exams (e-mails, essays…) As if that were not enough, at the end of one of the activities (see below) there is a selection of mock exams for further practice.

And, bearing in mind students' needs to prepare for the adult world, great care has been taken with the subjects which the units are based around. So difficult and dangerous situations are dealt with, technology is talked about and the implications of using it are discussed, the media are looked at… Clearly, these are all subjects with our young people are interested in and we invite them to analyse different issues, to give their opinions about them, to develop a critical and self-critical spirit and to debate openly and respecting others. The Life Skill section in each unit is of particular interest. In this section students identify real problems, suggest solutions and try to make use of them in their own lives. Without forgetting that the adults of the future will have to deal with numerous situations, both personal and professional, in spoken English. For this purpose, the course is balanced between the development of reading and writing) skill and oral skills (listening and speaking). So while some pages concentrate on specific work on each skill, there are also opportunities to work on skills in a combined fashion: oral comprehension and expression activities on reading comprehension pages, oral expression activities on oral comprehension pages and reading activities on written expression pages.

Out & About is designed to satisfy students' and teachers' needs by combining rigour and flexibility, on the one hand, and dynamism and motivation, on the other. It should also be borne in mind that this is a propedeutic stage designed to help students to go onto university or professional training. In both cases it is assumed that students will have solid training in English by the time they arrive: consolidate grammar contents; wide vocabulary; sufficiently developed ability to communicate. Which does not mean that the students should see this course as the end of the line in terms of learning the language but rather part of a process which will go on all their lives (this is one of the bases of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages)

The method's most important facets include:

  • Presenting objectives clearly: students know what they are going to learn in each unit.

  • The youthful design presents the carefully chosen subject matter, making an attractive package which motivate students.

  • Plentiful work material and practice material for students.

  • Equally plentiful material for teachers which will make dealing with diverse students, on the one hand, and the demands of the educational stage, on the other, considerably easier.

  • A holistic, integrating approach to linguistic skills.

  • Numerous opportunities for practice are provided, emphasising the idea that students are responsible for their own learning, in other words, they are invited to deduce grammar rules for themselves, develop wide vocabulary, work on processes for writing different types of text, etc.

  • There is plentiful complementary material for assisting learning (Tips, Get it right!...) which enable the identification of nuances to be taken into account and typical mistakes to be avoid.

In short, Out & About enables a exhaustive revision of what has been learned in previous stages, which helps to consolidate that knowledge, and also introduces new linguistic features which, combined with intensive practice, enriches students' use of English and helps them to see its immense potential in both personal and professional terms.

1.2 What Out & About offers
The materials in Out & About have been put together with the attitude that the students are not mere language learners. The students are taken to be, at all times, explorers who are investigating every facet of the process of learning.

As mentioned above, Out & About is an English course with a highly practical orientation: students learn through use and what is not used becomes forgotten. It is for this reason that we offer students numerous opportunities for study in formats which are sufficiently open for each student to be able to go as far as he/she chooses to or as far as his/her abilities permit.

We have paid a lot of attention to motivation, being aware that it is the best way to drive learning. And, to this end, care has been taken with the topics which will be looked at in each unit:

    • Unit 1: communication technology.

    • Unit 2: dangerous situations.

    • Unit 3: the family.

    • Unit 4: sports.

    • Unit 5: clothes and fashion.

    • Unit 6: crime.

    • Unit 7: social issues.

    • Unit 8: the media.

    • Unit 9: music.

Care has also be taken with the design, the format of the pages, the contents of the pictures, the drawings, colours, etc. Students work hard but almost without realising it, in a natural, comfortable way.

At the same time, the methodology used is clear. Units are structured with a dynamic which is repeated but, as mentioned, this does not become a routine thanks to the inherent diversity in each unit, which also makes it easier to deal with the students' diverse interests, their different styles and/or rhythms of learning. The Classroom Programme which comes with this Teaching Programme is of inestimable assistance to teachers for planning lessons.

In fact, teachers are essential when it comes to guiding learning. This means that they have to know the contents and opportunities provided by the course well: in this way they will be able to choose the most helpful things at each moment. When students see that their teachers know what they are doing and why they are doing it, they feel secure and, in addition, motivated. Teachers must also try to achieve a suitable atmosphere for studying: this involves providing work activities, etc, which are adapted for different rhythms of learning and also an atmosphere of respect, which is basic in terms of the different types of production, both oral and written, in group classes. Teachers are not asked to be psychologists, but they should have good knowledge of teaching methods and put them into practice.

Likewise, teachers become guides and facilitators for learning during work in pairs, groups and role plays. This type of communication activities give students the chance to work independently, without the teacher. During this type of activities, the teacher stays to one side and only supervises and intervenes as necessary.

Out & About provides a greater number of productive activities with which students can develop their competences with written and oral expression (speaking and writing competences), as the same time as they continue developing their oral and reading comprehension (reading and listening competences).

Another important feature of Out & About is that is it designed for Spanish-speaking students. In this context, the following characteristics and materials must be mentioned:

    • Common Mistakes at Bachillerato: this booklet accompanies the Student’s Book and points out typical mistakes made by Spanish-speaking students when learning English such as double consonants, confusing vocabulary (eg. why instead of because, the difference between all and everyone), etc. It includes practical exercises for consolidating corrected mistakes and tests for checking what had been learned.

    • False friend: these are text boxes which draw students' attention to words which are often confused between English and Spanish: the exercise is to translate sentences in English which have those words in Spanish. The Student’s Book includes various pages which bring together things which have been learned throughout the units.

    • Get it right: these text boxes focus on typical mistakes about grammar and vocabulary.

    • Pronunciation: the tasks in this section are specifically designed for working in an original, fun way on pronunciation and prosody which make cause particular difficulty.

Furthermore, Out & About includes a series of clearly differentiating features:

    • Vox-pop videos: video recordings by young English-speakers talking about their lives and thoughts, and short documentaries. The former provide a very enriching way to work on oral expression while the latter enable students to learn more about certain subjects and hold interesting debates.

    • Life Skill: as mentioned about, this section appears in every unit for students to develop their skills and the right strategies for facing more or less critical situations which can arise at any time of life. In order to work in greater depth on the skill in question, the matter is presented in the unit along with a page for developing the work with three blocks of tasks (Understanding the skill, Thinking further and Skills for life) and a box with ten ideas (tips) which are suggestions or advice.

    • Streetwise: text boxes with focus on natural or colloquial language in the texts and which is not usually looked at in such depth. These make up an excellent learning resource as colloquial language always motivates students especially.

    • Tip: text boxes which provide students with specific strategies for improving their language abilities while giving the opportunities to put them in practice.

    • Idioms: a section on the Listening pages for learning common English expressions.

    • Phrasal verbs: special attention is paid to phrasal verbs, which are complex if not practised intensively, which is done on the Vocabulary page.

And, of course, Out & About pays special attention to cultural, linguistic and ethnic diversity at schools in our country because of its importance and influence on learning English.

1.3 Components
The main materials for Out & About are a Student’s Book, an Activities Workbook), and a Teacher’s Book) but, as we will explain below, there are many more materials and resources too.

  • Student’s Book.

The Student’s Book has 160 full colour pages and is divided into 9 main units, each of 12 pages. Each unit opens with a cover explaining the objectives put forward; a photo taking up almost the whole page helps to put the unit subject in context, involving an openly motivational activity. Videos are also available to assist teaching each unit.

The following sections appear in each unit:

  • Two pages for reading comprehension (Reading) including a specific section for working on phrasal verbs.

  • A page for working on oral comprehension (Listening). A section for learning expressions (Idioms).

  • A page for working on oral expression (Speaking) to the right of which the previously mentioned Life skill section is positioned.

  • Two pages for working on written expression (Writing) including specific activities for improving this skill (Writing builder and Improve your writing) and a specific step by step guide for writing different types of texts.

  • Two vocabulary pages (Vocabulary); one of these includes a section for working specifically on areas of pronunciation (Pronunciation).

  • Two pages of grammar (Grammar). A Pronunciation section in some units.

  • The last page is for revising everything learned in the unit (Review).

The book also includes:

  • Every three units there are two pages for revising what has been learned throughout these units, which is usual done every term and is called, for that reason, Term Review.

  • Nine pages developing the contents from the nine Life skill sections.

  • 16 pages summarising all the grammar and vocabulary contents.

  • Two pages with the contents of False friends in alphabetical order.

  • Nine pages for working more on written expression (Writing guide) as developed in the units. This provides students again with all the contents on a single page.

  • Two support pages for developing some activities in pairs (Pair work).

  • Two pages with an extensive list of irregular verbs.

It should also be pointed about that the Student’s Book includes the Common Mistakes at Bachillerato booklet which, as said above, provide practice for working on typical mistakes made by Spanish-speakers learning English. It also includes tests for assessing learning and answers which mean that students can use the book by themselves.

  • Workbook.

This material consists of 144 pages in black and white for students to work by themselves on the contents of each unit. Each unit has 10 pages, nine of them providing exercises for practice and the tenth page for revision (Review).

The Workbook also includes:

  • Sample exams (Exam practice): two different sample exams (A and B) for each unit with a text or various questions and tasks connected with it (one always being writing a text or a specific type worked on in the unit (essay, e-mail…)).

  • Nine pages for practising oral skills (Listening & Speaking practice) as studied in each unit. The audio recordings can be downloaded from www.outandabout.es and the transcriptions are included at the end of the book. [The other audio recordings from the exercises can be downloaded from the same page]

  • Nine pages, one per unit, to work further on vocabulary acquisition/consolidation (Vocabulary builder). Extra vocabulary is provided and worked on in the Extension section.

  • A page and a half with an alphabetical list of phrasal verbs and their meanings.

  • Four and a half pages with an alphabetical list of words, unit by unit, which students have to study hard for PAU.

  • An extensive list of irregular verbs.

  • Augmented Reality App.

An app which, after scanning the cover of each unit, allows access to multimedia resources on mobiles or tablets.

  • Teachers' materials.

    • Teacher’s Book: teaching notes for each unit, including suggestions for carrying out optional activities. This includes transcriptions of the audio recordings and answers to questions.

    • Class Audio CDs: with all the recordings from the Student’s Book. Let us repeat that the audio recordings from the Activity Book can be downloaded from www.outandabout.es.

    • Teacher’s Resource Disc: provide numerous complementary resources such as worksheets with two levels of difficulty for working on grammar, exercises for practising oral expression and comprehension, exercises for working on written expression, translation practice, sheets about literary contents, PAU-type exams and two-level end-of-term and final exams.

    • Teacher’s DVD: includes all the videos in the course and comes with an Activity Book with orientations and photocopiable sheets for using the videos for teaching.

    • Online PAU Test Generator: allows teachers to create PAU sample exams. This will be updated will changes to university entrance processes are introduced in 2017.

    • Digital Out & About: consists of the Student’s Book and the Workbook which are digitalised so that they can be used in class using technical resources for projecting (digital board, computer and projector…) Includes the videos, audio recordings, solutions, interactive activities, the Teacher’s Book in digital format and the materials from the Teacher’s Resource Disc.

  • Website.

On www.outandabout.es teachers and students can find extra resources, recordings, videos, activities and the ‘tips and tricks’ section (designed for students to be able to use English in the real world).

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