ESL SCOPE AND SCALES
EARLY YEARS & PRIMARY YEARS
Scales 1 – 9
Model
Text
of in
Language
Context
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Tenor
Field
Mode
Field Continuum
everyday fields……..specialised fields……highly technical fields
Tenor Continuum
equal status ……………….…………..….. great difference in status
familiar …….………………………………...……………..very distant
great deal of emotional expression……..little emotional expression
Mode continuum
most spoken………………….…………….....… most written
Model of Language
Text in Context
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Language
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Tenor
Field
Tenor
Mode
Field
Mode
Text in Context
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Tenor
Mode
•broader strand
Language
•more specific
strand
•resources in the
English
language
Text in Context
Language
•range of genres
•purposes
•structure
language choices •structure texts
•build cohesion
•expand sentences
Field
•informational element
•everyday to technical
vocabulary
•verbs
•noun groups
•nominalisations
•circumstances
•topic specific vocabulary
Tenor
•interpersonal element
•formality to familiarity
•modality
•evaluation
•speech functions
•idioms
•non-verbal elements
Mode
•textual element
•spoken to written
•multimodal texts
•foregrounding
•coherence
•voice and tense
•print conventions
Sociocultural
Context
Genre
Situational Context
Text in Context
Sociocultural
Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Language
•range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure
•cohesion
choices range of genres language
•structure texts
•cohesive
purposes
structure
•the ‘what’, or content
•word groups and phrases
•its informational elements
•range from everyday to
technical vocabulary
•the verbs
•participants
•circumstances
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality, familiarity
and attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
Text in Context
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Language
language choices •structure texts
•expand sentences
•build cohesion
•the range of language
genres
choices
•purposes structure texts
•structure
-
build cohesion
•the ‘what’, or content
•word groups and phrases
expand
•its informational elements
•the sentences
verbs
•range from everyday to
technical vocabulary
•participants
•circumstances
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality,
familiarity and attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices organise texts
•focus foregrounding
Genre: Scale 1
•(towards) copying very
short groups of words
S: Good morning, good
morning everyone.
Genre: Scale 2
All: Good morning
everyone
•participates in basic
spoken exchanges
depending on
memorising segments
S: My mum buy for me a
gun
T: A gun? What do you do
with that?
S: and Barbie and car
T: Whoo! Do you enjoy
playing with those?
S: nods (goes and sits
down)
•responds in basic
spoken exchanges
involving two or three
turns
•uses one or two
examples of pronoun
reference
Genre: Scale 3
•constructs elementary
examples of basic
genres by speaking
and writing with a high
degree of scaffolding
•demonstrates an
understanding of the
structure of several
basic genres
•uses basic pronouns:
I, my
Genre: Scale 4
•organises the meanings
in brief written texts in a
logical order
•writes several pieces of
information about a living
thing
•topic words at the front of
sentences in a report
•begins to expand
information using linking
conjunctions: and, but
•uses a limited range of
cohesive resources:
possessive pronouns, third
person pronouns,
demonstrative pronouns
ORAL RECOUNT
Teacher: You can say good morning to everybody.
Johnny: Good morning everyone.
Everyone: Good morning Johnny.
Johnny:
My name is Johnny and I am 10 years old… and…
Sunday I woke up I had breakfast…I had breakfast..
then I…I play…with my brother… cricket and my
friend… next I…had my dinner. I ate fries… and…
meat… round… like a thing.
Teacher: What colour is it?
Johnny:
It’s green.
Teacher: Green peas. Is it a vegetable? Yes? Green peas,
vegetables?
Johnny:
Yes. After that I went to bed.
Genre: Scale 5
•constructs short spoken exchanges relying on
memorising initiating moves only
Genre: Scale 5
•phrases of time
and place to
structure
recounts
•linking
conjunctions: and
then, but, or, so
•binding
conjunctions:
because
•small range of
reference items
3. tad p o le
– 4 w eeks o ld
3. yo ung fro g w ith fro nt and b ack leg s
- 9 w eeks o ld


3. tadpole with back legs
- 6 weeks old

Include details about the changes that happen at each stage
of the life cycle of a frog.
Y ou should write in senten ces and use paragraphs to help
organise your writing.
P ay attention to spelling and punctuation.
Genre: Scale 6
•reads explanations and begins to write
brief examples
•use conjunctions to organise texts
•a range of linking conjunctions: then, but,
or, so and
•a range of binding conjunctions:because,
when, before, after
•reference items
Genre: Scale 7
• reads longer more
complex sequential
explanations and
simple charts and
begins to write short
examples
•organise meanings
in short simple
paragraphs
•use conjunctions to
organise texts:
Second, Next
•linking
conjunctions: and,
but, or, so, then
• binding
conjunctions:
when, if, while
Genre: Scale 8
•uses a limited
range of
features that
organise a text:
-phrases of time
and place
•begins to use a
small range of
relative
pronouns
•reference items
Genre: Scale 9
•more than one
complication
•binding
conjunctions:
as, as if, since,
because,
because if
•reference items
•synonyms,
antonyms
Task:
•Look at your text and using the criteria from the
previous slides or the criteria in the Scales, determine
an approximate ESL Scale for genre.
•Decide on some teaching priorities for this student,
to develop genre.
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
language choices •word groups and phrases
•structure texts
•the verbs
•informational
element
•expand sentences
•participants
•build cohesion to highly technical
•circumstances
•everyday
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality, familiarity and
attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
•verbs
•the verbs
•informational element
•noun groups
•participants
•everyday to technical
•nominalisations
•circumstances
vocabulary
•circumstances
•topic specific vocabulary
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality, familiarity
and attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
Field: Scale 2
S: Good morning, good
morning everyone.
All: Good morning
everyone
S: My mum buy for me a
gun
T: A gun? What do you
do with that?
S: and Barbie and car
T: Whoo! Do you enjoy
playing with those?
S: nods (goes and sits
down)
•uses vocabulary that is
mainly commonsense but
chooses isolated concrete
technical vocabulary
•understands small range
of vocabulary expressing
immediate interest:
•common noun groups
•common actions
Well the story was about
Field Scale 3
as a little fish and one...
boy to go to school and he
walk in the jungle and he
•uses very basic
pass in the big tree and he phrases of location
sit, he, he, he...sit on the
thing on the ground and
he look to the water and
•expands vocabulary
he see some fish and
by describing
when he come to school
according to size
he.. he make some boat
and when he come into the
jungle too, he put some
fish on the boat and it the
boat and the little boy the
boat on the water
Field Scale 3
•uses vocabulary
that is mainly
commonsense but
chooses some
concrete technical
vocabulary
•expands
vocabulary using
numbers,
describers,
classifiers
Field: Scale 4
•uses vocabulary
that is
commonsense but
begins to use some
technical
vocabulary
•uses very basic
phrases expressing
circumstances
Field: Scale 4
•uses technical
vocabulary for
educational fields
such as science
•uses very basic
circumstances
•expands
vocabulary using
numbers,
describers,
classifiers
Field: Scale 6
•verbs
•actions
•mental
•circumstances
•location
•manner
•noun groups
•describers
Field: Scale 6
•noun groups: number, qualifier
•technical vocabulary
•direct and indirect speech
Field: Scale 7
•noun groups:
-describers
-classifiers
•verbs:
- action
- relational
•circumstances:
- location
- time
• technical
vocabulary
Field: Scale 8
•common
nominalisations
•noun groups:
describers,
classifiers,
prepositional
phrases as
qualifiers
•circumstances:
manner
•technical
vocabulary
Field: Scale 9
More delicate
choices
• noun groups
•verbs:
- action
-relational
- mental
•circumstances:
- manner
•nominalisations
Task:
•Look at your text and using the criteria from the
previous slides or the criteria in the Scales, determine
the Scale for Field.
•Decide on some teaching priorities for this student,
to develop Field.
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Tenor
Mode
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
•the ‘what’, or content
•its informational elements
•range from everyday to
technical vocabulary
•word groups and phrases
•the verbs
•participants
•circumstances
•the ‘who’
•the language choices
•interpersonal elementselement
•who questions or commands
•interpersonal
•deal with formality, familiarity •how degrees of certainty
•familiar
and attitude to formal
expressed.
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Tenor
Mode
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
•the ‘what’, or content
•its informational elements
•range from everyday to
technical vocabulary
•word groups and phrases
•the verbs
•participants
•circumstances
•the ‘how’
•its textual elements
•deal with the range of spoken,
written and multimodal texts
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
•modality
•non-verbal elements
•interpersonal element•appraisal/evaluation
functions
•formality, familiarity•speech
and •speech
functions
•modality
attitude
•attitudinal lexis
•idioms
•idioms
•non-verbal elements
S: Good morning, good
morning everyone.
Tenor: Scale 2
All: Good morning
everyone
•responds in socially
appropriate ways
S: My mum buy for me a
gun
•chooses common
formulaic expressions
T: A gun? What do you do
with that?
S: and Barbie and car
T: Whoo! Do you enjoy
playing with those?
S: nods (goes and sits
down)
•pronounces most words
comprehensibly
Tenor: Scale 3
•expresses
statements in
basic ways
Tenor: Scale 4
•uses a narrow range of evaluative language
Teacher:
Johnny:
Everyone:
Johnny:
Teacher:
Johnny:
Teacher:
Johnny:
You can say good morning to everybody.
Good morning everyone.
Good morning Johnny.
My name is Johnny and I am 10 years old… and…
Sunday I woke up I had breakfast…I had breakfast..
then I…I play…with my brother… cricket and my
friend… next I…had my dinner. I ate fries… and…
meat… round… like a thing.
What colour is it?
It’s green.
Green peas. Is it a vegetable? Yes? Green peas,
vegetables?
Yes. After that I went to bed.
Tenor: Scale 5
•Chooses formulaic polite expressions appropriately
•Demonstrates a good awareness of intonation
patterns of basic spoken statements, questions
Tenor: Scale 5
•auxilliaries
•a small range of
evaluative
language to
express feelings
and attitudes
Tenor: Scale 5
•a range of evaluative language
•uses a small range of language elements expressing modality
Tenor: Scale 6
•uses a range of language elements to express feelings and attitudes
Tenor: Scale 7
•chooses
some
elementary
expressions
of modality
•evaluative
vocabulary
to express
feelings and
attitudes
•strictly limited
range of
colloquial and
idiomatic
language
Tenor: Scale 9
• uses a range
of simple
forms of
language
expressing
modality with
a greater
degree of
accuracy in
more formal
contexts
Task:
•Look at your text and using the criteria from the
previous slides or the criteria in the Scales,
determine the Scale for Tenor.
•Decide on some teaching priorities for this student,
to develop Tenor.
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
•the ‘what’, or content
•its informational elements
•range from everyday to technical
vocabulary
•word groups and phrases
•the verbs
•participants
•circumstances
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality, familiarity and
attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•the
‘how’ element
•textual
•its textual elements
•spoken
towritten
written
•range of spoken,
and
multimodal
texts
•multimodal
•the language choices -organise
texts
•focus foregrounding
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
Text in Context
Language
•the range of genres
•specific purposes
•structure and cohesion
•language choices •structure texts
•cohesive
•the ‘what’, or content
•its informational elements
•range from everyday to technical
vocabulary
•word groups and phrases
•the verbs
•participants
•circumstances
Tenor
•the ‘who’
•interpersonal elements
•deal with formality, familiarity and
attitude
•the language choices
•who questions or commands
•how degrees of certainty
expressed.
Mode
•textual element
•deals with the range of
spoken, written and
multimodal texts
• foregrounding
• •foregrounding
voice and tense
• print conventions
Sociocultural Context
Genre
Situational Context
Field
•voice and tense
•print conventions
Mode: Scale 1
•handwriting:
legible letters
•representing
sounds: some
attempt
Mode: Scale 3
•repetitive sentence
beginnings: I
•limited control of
primary tenses:
simple present used
instead of simple past
•print conventions:
spells with some
accuracy
Mode: Scale 4
•some control
of primary
tenses for most
common
regular verbs
but a strictly
limited control
of secondary
tenses
•experiments
with
punctuation:
fullstops and
capitals used
Mode: Scale 4
•repetitive sentence
beginnings
•some control of
primary tenses
•spells most
common words
and others on own
pronunciation
•experiments with
punctuation
Mode: Scale 6
•control of primary tenses, past tense form of common irregular verbs
•begins to control secondary tenses
•spells with greater accuracy
•legible and uses punctuation
Mode: Scale 8
•organises texts in simple, logically ordered paragraphs
•foregrounds simple, repetitive patterns most of the time
•demonstrates limited control, with support, of punctuation marks
beyond the basic: commas and apostrophes for basic contractions
Mode: Scale 9
organises texts in
longer, logically
ordered paragraphs
• foregrounds less
simple, repetitive
patterns:
-phrases of time
and place
foregrounded
more than once
•understands that
changes in
grammar may be
required when
using passive, but
doesn’t always
have control
Task:
•Look at your text and using the criteria from the
previous slides or the criteria in the Scales,
determine the Scale for Mode.
•Decide on some teaching priorities for this student,
to develop Mode.
GENRE
• structure
conjunctions:
Secondly,
Therefore
• cohesion
reference: us, they,
we, I, you, there
(their), the
• expansion
linking - and, so
binding -because
FIELD
•nouns: Lots of
people, the best pets
•verbs
action: help, fly, see,
brush, put, keep
mental: think
relational: are, have,
is
•where: high, in there
(their) hair
•technical: pets,
clouds, sun, brush,
ribbons, hair, Unicorn
TENOR
• series of statements,
mostly accurately
formed complex
sentences
• certainty, obligation: I
think
• feelings, attitudes:
like (liked), best,
beautiful
• colloquial language:
Unicorns are cool
MODE
• foregrounded: Lots
of people, Unicorn, I
think, They,
Secondly, Therefore
• simple present: have,
are, is, help, fly, can
see, can brush, put
• print conventions
Task:
•Look at the Scale levels for each of Genre, Field,
Tenor and Mode and determine the overall Scale of
the text.
•Determine what kind of additional texts you would
require to confirm the Scale level of the student.
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ESL Scope and Scales 1-9