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Questions around writing

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Mr363, Oct 29, 2018.

  1. Mr363

    Mr363 New commenter

    Thanks to people who have responded to my posts with questions previously.

    I have two questions, I hope some people can give some thoughts.

    Firstly, where I am teaching, the writing sequence is that children write a small part of a piece each day. For example, in a story, over two weeks, the children would write the setting, describe some characters, write a build-up, a dilemma and a resolution. They would do each of these on a different day, and correct according to my marking.

    They then do a 'final draft' where they go back and copy over everything they have done, corrections included.

    I am wondering if anyone can give any insight as to whether this is standard practice? My query around it is, if the 'final draft' is just a copying exercise, how do I ever have the opportunity to assess the children for 'independent work'.

    My second question is just a general one - I am trying to model the writing I want the children to produce in the lesson, but finding it hard to feel like I am striking the correct balance between showing them what to do and them having the opportunity to be creative themselves - especially as some children are practically copying the model. Although again, is this just what has to happen in LKS2?

    Thanks in advance for any thoughts.
     
  2. madeline_varian

    madeline_varian New commenter

    I find that if you break down the story elements students respond between to this. I am currently teaching Grade 5 and breaking these elements down, especially when teaching them about narrative and persuasive writing this helps. I have not done a writing sequence where it is over a two-week block, and breaking down each story element each day. This could be effective if put in place correctly. I will give it a try.

    An alternative, which I have also done throughout the year, which may or may not work based on grade level, is do a lot of modelling for students.
    At the moment we are doing explanations and I will provide students with a topic. As a class we will brainstorm as many ideas as we can for that topic. Students will then be provided with websites to note take to gain as much information as they can through the form of both written text and videos. Once students have completed this, as a class, we begin the writing process. We come up with an introduction and the first paragraph together.
    I find that if some students feel confident enough to get started after the modelling of the introduction, I let them start. If other students are struggling they stay on the floor until they feel confident enough to independently write on their own. The modelling then stays on the board as a guide for students to refer back to. I find that not many, if any at all, of my students copy what we wrote on the board. They may take some ideas but they make the paragraphs all their own writing.

    I find that only modelling the first two paragraphs with students then allows you to assess them in their writing in the later paragraphs. This can provide you with an insight into how their writing is progressing throughout the piece they are producing.

    I hope this helped in some way.
     
  3. hammie

    hammie Lead commenter

    I'd agree about the independent work issue. The old "Big Write" approach seemed to solve that and I would be more than happy to see that used more widely again. 3 or 4 days of input followed by a chance to write something in the style seemed to tick all the boxes.
     
  4. NingenEmpi

    NingenEmpi New commenter

    "I find that if some students feel confident enough to get started after the modelling of the introduction, I let them start. If other students are struggling they stay on the floor until they feel confident enough to independently write on their own."

    I really like this idea and will try it out. Thanks for sharing!
     

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