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Writing

Writing Intent:

 

Our Writing curriculum aims to immerse the children in a range of high-quality texts to provide exemplar models to support and motivate the children in becoming published authors. Through working as authors, pupils develop a rich vocabulary, growing knowledge of grammatical and spelling structures and fluent transcription, which they creatively and precisely apply to a variety of text types. As they progress, pupils develop an increasingly sophisticated writing style which is skilfully adapted for the purpose and audience.

Writing Implementation:

The core of developing writing across Puss Bank is that writing has a purpose, an audience, and a text type. Children study the four main purposes of writing; to persuade, to inform, to discuss and to entertain. Through our curriculum, we integrate memorable learning experiences, in order to provide the stimulus for writing for real audiences and for specific purposes. This motivates the children by answering the all-important question of ‘Why write?’ In addition, all children create a motivational message; its main purpose is to develop positive attitudes towards the writing process.  Pupils’ motivation and engagement in their writing journey is crucial in building their resilience and perseverance. Progression of the skills of writing are built upon in each year group to ensure the fundamental skills are secure. Key to our approach is empowering children to self-regulate their writing. They use a range of strategies to enable them to identify their strengths, and areas for development, to improve their own learning, and to bridge back in order to activate their prior learning to ensure skills are maintained in their long-term memory. The strategies are described and modelled before pupils practise them with feedback. Teacher support is then gradually reduced as pupils take increasing responsibility for their writing.

Nursery:

In Nursery, writing is developed through rich mark-making opportunities, which adults explicitly model throughout the provision. These early mark-making opportunities are provided through sensory and physical experiences, which create the foundation to the development and progress of children’s mark-making.

The focus of writing for the children as they enter Nursery is to distinguish between the different marks that they make. In preparing for Reception, they learn to ascribe meanings to marks they see in different places, and to give meaning to marks they draw and paint.

Role-play plays a significant role in providing numerous and regular mark-making opportunities. For example, ‘I’m writing a shopping list.’ Adults scribe what children are saying in our ‘big writing books,’ such as what activities they did at the weekend, or what they heard and saw during outside learning activities.

In the Spring term (before Reception year), children begin phase 2 phonics. Adults model writing graphemes and children rehearse these with a multi-sensory approach (application in sand, through play-dough, and use of chalk). Children participate in environmental print hunts and actively discuss what symbols and signs represent and ascribe meanings to what they see in a range of places.

Throughout the Nursery provision, we heavily focus on the physical side of children’s development and progress in their mark-marking and writing. Our day-to-day provision, ensures children strengthen their core muscles through ‘lying down’ play. In addition, gross motor activities, which strengthen children’s arms and shoulders and fine motor activities, which build strength and control in their hands and fingers have a significant place in the provision. This is further developed through the introduction of ‘Write Dance’ and ‘Dough Disco’ in the Spring term.

Reception:

Writing in Reception is taught through high quality texts on topics linked to ‘self’ and the local community ensuring that all writing has a purpose. All children have an independent writing activity directly linked to the teacher input and text response. In addition, each child has a ‘focussed write’ every week. The first half-term focus is on children mark making, distinguishing between writing and pictures and explicit teaching of what is a word. The second half-term progresses to children understanding the concept of two words- adjective noun, for example, big box. All key writing foci is consistently embedded in the continuous provision. In Spring, teaching and learning focusses on children progressing from writing and applying two words to constructing a sentence. Talk for writing is weaved through all areas of reading and writing with constant repetition of the high-quality text, ensuring children’s vocabulary and understanding of story structure is strong. In the summer, children are applying their ‘deep’ knowledge of sentence structure to innovate and write a simple story.

 

Key Stage One:

In Years 1 and 2, writing is taught through a clear and structured approach, encompassing both narrative and non-fiction units, based on age appropriate and high-quality texts. For every unit of writing, the purpose, audience and text type (PAT) is actively discussed with the children. The children carry out an independent write in order for the teacher, and the child, to know their strengths and next steps in this text type. These pieces of writing are effectively used by the teacher to inform the teaching and learning of the writing process, and, as a result, to ensure the children’s learning is constantly moving forward.

The first phase centres upon the exploration of the high-quality text(s), focussing on the purpose, structure and language features. We believe it is vital that children experience several examples of the genre in order to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the text.

We understand that children need to be explicitly taught the processes of writing. As a result, the second phase of the process moves to the children completing a scaffolded write with the teacher becoming an ‘author in action’, showing the children how authors work and think, and explicitly modelling and teaching the writing strategies of the planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising and editing components of the text type. This is essential in revealing the reflections of an effective learner to the children, and enabling pupils to develop their metacognitive skills. Through this modelled and shared writing, the key language and grammatical features of the year group are explicitly taught to the children through the text type. Repeated modelling is then used to embed key skills that the children need, in order to enable them to take increasing responsibility for their learning.

The final phase centres on the children taking ownership of their learning and independently writing in the text type which has been analysed and modelled. As a result, teachers clearly and explicitly model the seven components of writing (planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing and publishing) and how to use the strategies to achieve them through each unit of writing.

To develop a secure foundation of writers’ knowledge, Y2 use the Talk for Writing approach. This facilitates immersion into the structure and language of a text using methods that are appropriate for the age group. It also lends support to less able writers or those with EAL.  

 

Key Stage Two:

We understand that children need to be explicitly taught the processes of writing. Our non-fiction writing curriculum is taught through the six-stage approach of the IPEELL Writing Project (developed by the Calderdale Excellence partnership with the support of the Education Endowment Foundation), which is directly adhered to in Years 5 and 6. This is specifically adapted in Lower Key Stage Two in order to be age-appropriate and therefore, effective in impacting on their writing progress. This strategy has significant research behind its impact, and the evaluation from Durham and York Universities showed that the approach had a positive effect on children’s writing, with the greatest impact of any EEF-funded research project.

“Participating pupils made approximately nine months additional progress compared to similar pupils who did not participate in the intervention”

EEF, Using self-Regulation to Improving Writing (2014)

Our school participated in the DFE research into the IPEELL process in 2018-19, and it had a significant impact on our children’s writing progress. It is now integral to our non-fiction writing curriculum, in which we develop the skills of children to analyse the purpose, structure and language features of texts, taking ownership of the writing process through self-evaluation and goal-setting for improvement.

In terms of our fiction writing curriculum, we follow a clear and structured approach of children discussing and analysing high quality texts in the same genre. This is then followed by explicit modelling by the class teacher, which is partnered with the children’s next steps. The children then progress to their independent writing, involving the key skills of planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing and publishing, leading to reflective and skilled writers.

 

Years 3 and 4

In Years 3 and 4, writing is taught through a clear and structured approach, encompassing both narrative and non-fiction units based on age appropriate and high-quality texts. For every unit of writing, the purpose, audience and text type (PAT) is actively discussed with the children, and regularly referred to on the English working wall. The children carry out an independent write, in order for the teacher to know their strengths and next steps in this text type. These independent pieces of writing are effectively used by the teacher to inform the teaching and learning of the writing process, and, as a result, to ensure the children’s learning is constantly moving forward.

 The first phase centres upon the exploration of the high-quality text(s), focussing on the purpose, structure and language features. We believe it is vital that children experience several examples of the genre in order to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the text type.

In non-fiction writing, children are introduced (in Year 3) to the IPEELL mnemonic (Introduction, Point, Explain, Ending, Links, Language) and it is linked to the model text(s) in non-fiction units. In Year 3 the introduction of IPEELL is a highly scaffolded, modelled and teacher-led process.  

The second phase of the process moves to the children completing a scaffolded write with the teacher becoming an ‘author in action’, showing the children how authors work and think, and explicitly modelling and teaching the writing strategies of the planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising and editing components of the text type. This is essential in revealing the reflections of an effective learner to the children, and enabling pupils to develop their metacognitive skills. Through this modelled and shared writing, the key language and grammatical features of the year group are explicitly taught to the children through the text type. Repeated modelling is then used to embed key skills that the children need, to enable them to take increasing responsibility for their learning.

The final phase centres on the children taking ownership of their learning and independently writing in the text type which has been analysed and modelled. Teachers explicitly model the seven components of writing (planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing and publishing) and how to use the strategies to achieve them through each unit of writing.

To develop a secure foundation of writers’ knowledge, Y3 use the Talk for Writing approach to link across from KS1 to KS2.  This facilitates immersion into the structure and language of a text using methods that are appropriate for the age group. It also lends support to less able writers or those with EAL. 

 

Years 5 and 6:

In Years 5 and 6, non-fiction writing is taught through the six-stage approach of the IPEELL Writing Project using high-quality texts. For every unit of writing, the purpose, audience and text type (PAT) is actively discussed with the children, and regularly referred to on the English working wall. The children begin with an independent write. This enables the teacher and the child to identify the strengthsand next stepsfor this text type together. These pieces of writing are also used by the teacher to inform the teaching content needed to effectively ensure the children’s learning of the writing process is continually moving forward.  

The first phase centres upon the exploration of the high-quality text(s), focussing on the purpose, structure and language features. We believe it is vital that children experience several examples of the genre in order to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the text. This is then used to create a mark scheme based on features that the children have identified.

The second phase of the process moves to the children completing a scaffolded write with the teacher becoming an ‘author in action’, showing the children how authors work and think, and explicitly modelling and teaching the writing strategies of the planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising and editing components of the text type. This is essential in revealing the reflections of an effective learner to the children and enabling pupils to develop their metacognitive skills. Through this modelled and shared writing, the key language and grammatical features of the year group are explicitly taught to the children through the text type. Teachers effectively use these lessons to actively assess the children’s needs. Repeated modelling is then used to embed key skills that the children need to enable them to take increasing responsibility for their learning. This scaffolded piece of work is then scored collaboratively using the mark scheme, and both teachers and children set goals to further improve their writing. During this phase, the initial write is also scored, using the shared mark scheme. Both scores are then shared and charted with the children. This has a significant impact on their motivation for writing as they visually and numerically see their improvement.

The final phase centres on the children taking ownership of their learning and independently writing in the text type, which has been analysed and modelled. As a result, teachers explicitly model the seven components of writing (planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing and publishing) and how to use the strategies to achieve them through each unit of writing. The final piece of writing is then used to measure the children’s progress from the initial task.

Throughout each phase, pupils are taking ownership of the writing process through self-motivation, self-evaluation and setting goals for improvement.

In fiction writing, the same key phases and components are applied as in the non-fiction process. Children regularly self-evaluate and set goals for improvement. However, we do not use the IPEELL structure and mark scheme approach in our fiction writing.

At the end of Key Stage 2, children are reflective and competent writers, who can enthuse readers through the form of persuasion, informing and entertaining.

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