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Writing

Mrs Lewis Mrs Hughes
English Lead Practitioner Link Governor

 

Intent - What do we want children to learn?

At Carlton Colville, we believe that great writers emerge from great readers, so much of our wider curriculum is built around quality fiction and non-fiction.

We intend to give pupils the opportunity to:

  • Emulate quality authors in their writing;
  • Use the writing of quality authors as an inspiration or stimulus for their own work;
  • Reflect on what they have read in their writing (writing about what they have read).


We intend to enable all pupils to grow and develop their own authorship throughout their time at our school. We understand the vital importance of writing (and spoken communication) in providing children with a voice, so that they can share their ideas with the world. We know that it is especially crucial that disadvantaged and SEN pupils develop this “voice” and we intend for them to do so.

We want all pupils leave our school well-equipped for secondary education, with the ability to write effectively in a range of fiction genres and non-fiction text types. We understand the duality of writing: it is an invaluable life skill, yet it is also a means of self-expression (by committing words to a blank page we leave our mark on the world).

We also believe that writing should be taught using a range of pedagogical approaches that are challenging yet enjoyable for our pupils, so that our children want to write, recognising that a person can write for their own entertainment, which will then entertain the reader in turn. For this reason, our writing opportunities are often integrated into thematic work so that tasks are pertinent, contextual and for real purposes. Writing skills may be taught in isolation (eg. grammar, spelling and handwriting) but longer writing tasks are usually linked to our curriculum topics/units. Storytelling and Talk for Writing are other engaging and inclusive pedagogical approaches to writing that are sometimes employed - using the power of stories and storytelling/oracy to raise standards in reading and writing.

We strive to provide children with a wide range of writing opportunities in both fiction and non-fiction, writing in every subject across the curriculum. However, our intention is also to grant classroom practitioners the professional freedom to present the pupils in their class with unforeseen writing opportunities as and when these arise. For example, (in addition to planned writing opportunities) current affairs (including local, national and global events), trips, visits, special events, topical assemblies and other experiences may provide purposeful and fresh writing opportunities.
 

Implementation - How are we going to achieve our intent?

The Writing curriculum is led and overseen by our English Lead Practioner and our English Team. A regular programme of monitoring, evaluation and staff support takes place along with the celebration and sharing of good practice. There is an ongoing commitment to evolve and improve the quality and impact of writing on offer to all the children. 

Our School’s writing is driven by each year group’s Writing Spine, which provide pupils with a wide range of writing opportunities in both fiction and non-fiction, writing in multiple subject disciplines across the curriculum.

We know that children learn best when the curriculum is well-sequenced. (See more on the sequencing of writing lessons in section 2.3 of our Writing Policy). Children are taught new core knowledge, skills, understanding and vocabulary to deepen their conceptual awareness. However, our pupils are also given multiple opportunities to build on prior knowledge. Children of all abilities develop their skills, knowledge and understanding against each writing learning objective.

We carry out planning in writing alongside our topics/units planning and learning, as we move our children towards meeting “milestone indicators”, as exemplified in Chris Quigley Essentials Curriculum as well as the end of key stage standards. We aim for depth of learning. Teachers plan together in year groups and milestones using the Curriculum Long Term Plan, Year Group Curriculum Overviews and Year Group Writing Spines. Individual lesson plans for the teaching of writing are then produced but these may be adapted as the week progresses in response to the needs of the pupils, identified through continual ongoing teacher assessment (AFL).

Individual lesson plans list the specific learning objectives and expected outcomes for each lesson, and detail how the lessons are to be taught. They also include the different depths of learning and challenge that the children will encounter (paddling, snorkelling and diving). The class teacher keeps these individual plans, and the class teacher and English Lead Practitioner discusses them on an informal basis. Plans may also be examined during English monitoring cycle.

Our Writing Spines form the bedrock of our writing curriculum. Year group Writing Spines record the planned writing opportunities we intend to give our pupils and exemplify a broad range of writing opportunities in both fiction and non-fiction, writing in multiple subject disciplines across the curriculum. Pupils are given opportunities to write for a range of audiences and purposes, adopting the level of formality required to suit each task.

Writing Teaching Sequence
Most often, writing at Carlton Colville Primary School is taught using the lesson sequence indicated below:

When taught in depth, this lesson sequence can take 2 – 3 weeks to deliver. However, at Carlton Colville Primary School we understand that it is important for pupils to encounter the writing process frequently, writing independently more often than once every 2-3 weeks. We address this by providing our pupils with writing tasks in other curriculum areas. We also used Quick Writes as a way of ensuring that pupils encounter the writing process often. Quick Writes are writing opportunities where the pupils reach the point of writing after only 1 or 2 lessons. On these occasions, the different stages of the Writing Teaching Sequence may still be apparent, but are combined in order to reach independent writing sooner.  

Year group Every Time I Write statements and SPAG Progression Documents also ensure progression and high standards of writing. Both of these documents list aspects of writing for each year group, which most children should routinely use with accuracy and consistency and are applied in writing lessons, regardless of whether the writing unit is a Quick Write, in a foundation subject, or is following the 2-3 week Writing Teaching Sequence.
 

Impact - What will it look like when we have achieved our intent?

  • Pupils draw on their independent reading careers to inform their writing. This reading is reflected in their writing. E.g. Year 6 have written in the style of David Almond, after enjoying their class reader. On other occasions, pupils choose a particular author, text type or style to emulate in their writing.
  • Cursive handwriting is well-established, with pupils across the school achieving pen licenses each year across Years 2 - 6.
  • Pupils enjoy writing because they have a deep-seated love of reading that has been nurtured and fostered from their very first day in our school.
  • Pupils enjoy writing for a range of audiences and purposes, adapting their use of grammatical features, vocabulary and punctuation to suit the level of formality required.
  • Pupils write in most subject disciplines across the curriculum (lots of examples are available on the website).
  • Work evidences a tight writing focus, where knowledge, skills and understanding are being
  • Higher attaining pupils (and pupils showing potential of attaining greater depth in end of key stage assessments) receive appropriate challenge and opportunity to invent and write freely in their areas of interest (again, drawing upon their reading history as they do so).
  • Pupils regulary proofread, edit and improve their work, ready to read it aloud and share it with others.

Assessment

Through the explicit teaching of the Writing knowledge and skills, both the teachers and the pupils assess their learning continuously throughout the lesson. Our assessment systems enable teachers to make informed judgements about the depth of their learning and the progress they have made over time. 

Pupil Voice

Writing in Action

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