The kit is based on the short story of the same name by author Andrea Levy. The story was first published in ‘The Independent on Sunday' and later in the anthology ‘Underwords - The Hidden City' published by Maia Press Limited.

It concerns a woman, the narrator, seeking change for a ten pound note in the National Portrait Gallery in London who strikes up a reluctant conversation with a young woman whose plight gradually becomes revealed. The narrator is plunged into a moral conflict, and the reader is drawn into the hard realities of the life of refugees and how they are treated.

This kit was produced by teachers who attended the first international BritLit course at NILE in Norwich, UK in 2007. These teachers are:

Liliana Russo

Laura Campagnone, Lucia Zarelli, Silvia Minardi

Manuela Gamero, Umbelina Lima, Carmo Rodrigues

How to use this BritLit kit

The material is divided into four sections: Pre-reading, Context, After Reading and Word Work

  • Pre-reading (pdf) examines the background to the story, and asks students to think about the possible narrative the story will follow.  This section starts with a map and listening exercise, introducing us to one of the characters.  Following this we get to know a little about the other characters in the story. Students are then asked to speculate on the interaction of the elements they have been introduced to create their own story.
  • There are some activities in Context which look at some of the issues that can be explored from the story: immigration and emigration; living in a big city; webquest and diary construction.
  • After Reading asks students to summarise the characters and the events of the story as a way of rounding off the reading activities. 
  • Word Work takes some aspects of language in use from the text – must have and should have.
  • You can find the answers to activities and exercises plus some suggestions in Loose Change Key. 

The materials in this BritLit Kit are available to download below. 



Submitted by nadine tamisier on Tue, 06/15/2010 - 08:24


Actually I would be interested in having some answers for all the activities concerning the short story "Loose Change"

Dear Nadie,

You can find the answers to the exercises in the pdf file 'Key'.

Best wishes,


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