English : Writing
We are so proud of the wonderful writing that goes on at Handcross!
Throughout the school day, the children have lessons which give them opportunity to learn, practise and embed all the key skills needed for writing including spelling, grammar and handwriting.
English lessons are linked to the children's topic and the writing is purposeful so that children know WHY they are writing. Children have opportunity to explore writing different genres and styles of text, including narratives, non-fiction pieces and poetry.
We explore high quality texts that the children can take inspiration from and make sure that learning is engaging and multi-sensory; children may watch videos, have hands-on experiences of use drama to influence their writing.
The children are taught to think like authors. They are encouraged to take risks and explore writing. They experience the whole process from planning, drafting, re-drafting (by proof-read and editing in collaboration with their teacher) and finally 'publishing' a final piece.
As well as daily spelling or phonics lessons, children all have access to an interactive programme called 'Spellodrome'. It is an exciting, effective programme which engages even those children who find spelling difficult. The children each have a personalised account which they log into at school and at home to play games designed to help them with their spellings.
Celebrating Writing at Handcross
Our ‘superstar writer’ award is given to one children in each class roughly once a month. The focus is on creativity and authorial intent, rather than perfect spelling or grammar. The work of the winners is celebrated and shared in assembly. They receive a superstar writer pencil and their work and photo is displayed in the corridor to inspire others.
Throughout the year we hold 'Writing Days' whereby all the children from Year R – Year 6 engage with the same broad writing task. The days are designed to spark engagement and creativity in our writers and to give them a greater period of time to write an extended piece of writing; within one day they may engage with the stimuli, explore, plan, write, redraft and even publish their piece! Here are some quotes from the children about recent writing days:
"I woke up at 5am this morning because I was so excited to write!" - Willow
"My favourite day of Year 2 so far was writing day!" - Sofia
"I feel really happy because I have so many ideas for the my story and I get to share them." - Sophie
We often tie the day to a competition or external stimulus to excite the children. We were so proud of one of our most wonderful writers, Odilja, who won a national story writing competition run by MOTO. Odilja won some wonderful prizes, including a workshop with the author Maria Farrer who came to school to announce her big win! Well done Odilja - we are so proud of you!