Touchstones 1

Touchstones 1

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Touchstones 1 - Textbook and Activity Book Set

Written by highly experienced and well-known English teacher Clare Madden, Touchstones presents a fresh and engaging new approach to Junior Cycle English.

Touchstones uses cutting-edge, classroom-tested methods to build up students’ knowledge of texts and skills in a carefully integrated way. Students are led on an innovative and exciting journey through the specification.

The Touchstones package includes:

  • A Student Textbook
  • A Student Activity Book
  • A Free Student e-book
  • Free Audio App
 Student Textbook
 
  • All 22 First Year Learning Outcomes are covered with emphasis on the three strands of the Junior Cycle English specification: oral language, reading and writing
  • The clear, simple design helps to focus students and prevent cognitive overload
  • Fresh, exciting and engaging text extracts, both traditional and contemporary, are used throughout from novels, plays, films, digital texts and multi-modal texts
  • Units are carefully structured around the recommended genre-based approach and cover the following genres: fiction, poetry, film, drama, Shakespeare and non-fiction
  • These sequenced units of learning begin by building a strong knowledge base for each genre, develop oral communication, reading and writing skills, and end with a project
  • They are designed to be either covered in sequence or to be dipped into and out, for ease of use
  • stand-alone Shakespeare unit, a first with this programme, introduces students to the world of Shakespeare and builds knowledge and understanding of the grammar and punctuation of a Shakespearean text
  • Each unit begins with a knowledge organiser of genre-based critical vocabulary and ends with a Test Your Knowledge quiz
  • Highly scaffolded tasks effectively support mixed-ability teaching in the English classroom
  • Retrieval practice opportunities that build on prior learning appear throughout
  • Oral language supports include a strong focus on using structured and meaningful group discussion

Reading supports include:

  • Effective reading strategies integrated into tasks to develop reading skills
  • A dedicated reading unit including over 40 books appealing to this age group as well as engaging group tasks to encourage and promote reading for pleasure

Writing supports include:

  • Scaffolded writing tasks (models and writer’s toolkits) that promote the craft of writing
  • A skills development approach for writing to analyse, beginning in first year with annotation, quotation and inference skills
  • A focus on development of high-level vocabulary throughout
  • A dedicated Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG) section at the
    end of the book
Engaging end-of-unit projects
  • Can be used to prepare for the Classroom-Based Assessments (CBAs)
  • Oral language and writing projects provide students with opportunities to develop a personal writing voice and to experiment with and enjoy elements of public speaking and performance
  • Clear success criteria are provided
  • Step-by-step instructions and tasks with complementary teacher mark sheet and whole class feedback sheet for each project, provided in the Teacher’s Resource Book

Student Activity Book

Touchstones 1 Student Activity Book provides additional material, questions and activities to complement textbook content, including:

  • Meaningful scaffolding to approach written tasks
  • Carefully designed graphic organisers to support thinking and writing
  • A range of retrieval practice templates to support students using effective learning techniques
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