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How to get children to write creatively??

Discussion in 'Primary' started by mobile2, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. Hi everyone,
    I am a NQT in Yr3 and I am struggling to find ways to inspire my chn to write creatively using interesting adjectives. Please could anyone tell me how I can inspire them?? I have been given ideas to use Art in my Literacy lessons? But how?
    I want to do a lesson or two on just inspirational writing (by doing something different) so I can get them to use those adjectives? However, I am not sure what I can do in those 2 lessons? Maybe an activity where that they can touch, smell, feel etc.
    All ideas welcome,
    thanks all
  2. greta444

    greta444 New commenter

    Yes, you need a stimulus for creative writing. I always get the best results from this, particularly when I used a really busy picture of 'hell' as a focus. Not suitable for everyone but my Y6's really loved this. Just watch out for religious concerns.
  3. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter

    I agree with greta. A stimulus is what gets my lot off and running. A range of different 'inspiring' pictures can be found
    online. I guess it could depend on your topic, but it shouldn't be too hard to find a pic that relates well. Have a discussion with the class before to generate ideas. Maybe you could model how to do it with one picture and then give the class a different one to try it themselves.
  4. Teach them what an 'action' sentence is and a 'description' sentence is. Use an action sentence to start a paragraph, and the rest should be description. I'm trying this with my class at the moment. It's starting to work. It might be that they have to do one action, one description until they get the idea. Action tends to use the simple past tense, description tends to be past continuous, or past perfect (as a rule of thumb).
  5. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Sorry to be a pedant.
    Past continuous is past imperfect.
    The simple past tense is the past perfect.
  6. smiley786

    smiley786 New commenter

    Get chn to create a setting before they write sentences about settings.
    Make characters using plasticine, this will help with describing characters.
  7. Is it? I thought it could be called either past continuous or past imperfect. What is the difference? And what's the difference in simple past and past perfect? I'm no expert on this, only on what I can find out through the powers of Google.
  8. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Imperfect is the same as past continous:
    I was walking. It was raining.
    A continuous action that is not complete.

    Simple past tense is the same as the perfect.
    He got up. I walked to school.
    A completed action.
    I only know this because my background is languages! We don't spend much time thinking about this sort of thing in this country. The French, as an example, are obsessed with it all. I've sat with friends in France listening to them having an involved, lengthy debate about the correct usage of a particular archaic tense. They're not academic types, particularly, either. That just wouldn't happen in the UK.
  9. So I was right then?
    I spend time thnking and talking about it. I am fed up with people saying that they are 'sat down', or 'stood up'. I haven't got a background in languages, but I'm trying to find out as much as possible in order to teach it.
  10. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    Past perfect = "It had rained."
    Present perfect = "It has rained."
    (It's simply because "had" is past tense and "has" is present tense. Strictly speaking past and present are the only two tenses that English has.)
  11. This is how I understand it:
    Simple past: It rained. (action)
    Past perfect: It had rained. (description of what just happened)
    Past continuous: It was raining. (description over a longer period of time)

    Right or wrong?
  12. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    More or less correct.
    Past perfect - It has rained
    Pluperfect - it had rained
    I apologise for a slight error I made earlier on the thread (blame the wine!) where I confused the simple past with the past perfect - it's because in French, the past perfect (the passe compose) is usually used in place of the simple past as well for the past perfect. As an example, j'ai mangé means I ate and I have eaten. The listener can discern what is meant by the context. The simple past exists in French but is rarely used.
    But, the past continuous is what is known as the imperfect, which was my original point.
  13. Getting back to the OPs question, we use images, objects and films to help inspire. The free animations on aniboom.com are great for this. THere is also a fab animation called Wild Jungle ride (just google it) which my children have loved. We watched it a third at a time and it led to some great creative writing.
  14. Thanks for the help, I found the wild jungle ride video. However, I would like to know that once I have showed it to the chn, would I then ask the chn for some adjectives, then maybe get them to make a collage of it and then get some writing done?
    What do you guys think?
  15. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    Sounds good. You might bear in mind, though, that you don't necessarily make good description by liberal addition of adjectives. Often the nouns and verbs are the most effective "describing words" and so they need attention as well (perhaps more attention).
    Re the tense thing:
    "It had rained" is a form that might translate into what they call "pluperfect" in other languages but in English we just call it "past perfect".
    The English tense system is very different from French. E.g. we have no conditional tense and no future tense.
  16. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Yes. Specifically, we use an auxiliary verb to denote modality or the future tense.
  17. ecawemma

    ecawemma New commenter

    There are lots of ideas on how to use films on the units on www.emmarogers.org.uk. Don't limit yourself to just looking at the Y3 units - there are lots of ideas to inspire your children in the other units there too. For example, some Y3 teachers have used the Y4 Hoverbike unit for ideas and been really happy with the outcomes. Hope you find it useful.
  18. I didn't ever go off topic. I am teaching this to my class at the moment. The problem that I have found is that children write narrative using action after action. That is why their stories are so boring! I have spent a lot of time analysing published stories and have come to the conclusions about action being simple past and past continuous or past perfect is used for description. It's all very well using images, objects and film clips (don't we all do that?), but if they don't know how to structure action and description, you will end up with the same old tripe over and over.
  19. Ok thanks for that. I'm gradually getting my head round this sort of thing. The more accurate information I can get hold of, the better.
  20. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Do you think my life would be somehow richer if I had the faintest clue what you people were talking about?

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