Open educational resources  and instructional materials

Supporting adult literacy and foundational learning programs  

Your search for free, reproducible and modifiable workbooks, lessons, activities, modules, slide sets, and even courses ends here!

With the guidance of a working group of educators from Ontario adult literacy programs, we've curated a collection of always free and reproducible and mostly open, quality instructional materials and content that tutors and instructors can use with adult learners. This is not another list of links leading you to sites and collections that you have to search. We've done the searching, reviewing, vetting and organization for you. All resources are ready-to-use and most have teaching tips and guidance.

Resources that can be modified are also available in a Google Drive collection. If you like this set-up, you can continue building your personal collection. If resources can't be stored in our folders, due to copyright restrictions or the use of online formats, we provide direct links to the resources

All items in the collection contain details about allowable uses (i.e. copyright or Creative Commons licensing information) and level of instruction. Read more about the development of the collection, allowable uses and how this collection fills a gap in the field of foundational adult education. 

We are continuing to build the collection. The resources below will be ready soon. 

Empowering learners

Educator resources

New resources added!

Reading instruction > Level 2

A Closer Read is a  reading strategies collection that could readily be used as a course. It includes a student workbook, teacher book, audio files and vocabulary practice using Quizlet  (added April, 2023).

Reading instruction > Level 3

Read Faster, Understand More is a comprehensive set of materials focused on developing reading skills and strategies to prepare for college entry. The workbook/textbook and accompanying Quizlets and Slides could be used as the basis of a course (added April, 2023).

Foundational digital skills and knowledge > Mobile devices

Metro Toronto Movement for Literacy (MTML) has developed a comprehensive, engaging and very useful set of learning modules to help learners use their smartphones. The resource also includes information for educators, trainers and services providers (added August, 2023).

General knowledge content > Canadian media, history and Indigenous knowledge

The Indigenous Cultural Education Toolkit produced by The Ontario Native Literacy Coalition (ONLC) will "provide understanding of Indigenous world views and promote cultural consciousness." It is filled with activities you can use with learners and for your own professional learning (added August 2023).

Foundational digital skills > Internet

Teach digital media awareness with some great resources from the Canadian organization Ctrl-F. "False and misleading information is rampant online, and people lack the skills and motivation to determine what to trust. To build the next generation of informed citizens, we need to adopt new ways to teach digital media literacy and source evaluation" (added September 2023).

We have colour coded copyright and Creative Commons (CC) licensing information for each resource. Read more on the About page.

Follow Fair Dealing Guidelines for content not specifically developed for instruction and content that must be purchased.A teacher can copy or post only one chapter per book in a single schoolyear or semester under the Fair Dealing Guidelines.” Permission to use more than one chapter must be obtained from the publisher. Consumable workbooks CAN'T be copied or digitized.

Copyrighted and free online content developed for instruction can be shared with students in its entirety. Some content can only be shared with a link. Many sites also provide the means for you to download, sync to an LMS or print. Look for icons and PDFs.

All Creative Commons (CC) licenses permit sharing and reproduction of entire works. But you can’t modify content when no derivatives (ND) is applied: CC BY-NC-ND and CC BY-ND.  

If you don’t see ND on a CC licence you can modify the content but there might be conditions.

NC = no commercial use

SA = share alike means you must apply the same CC licence on your modified materials. These licenses are CC BY, CC BY-SA, CC BY-NC and CC BY-NC-SA.

All creative commons licenses require attribution (BY).