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SOS literacy

Discussion in 'Primary' started by chocoholic01, Oct 21, 2015.

  1. chocoholic01

    chocoholic01 New commenter

    So I have gone back into a classroom after three years out as a numeracy specialist and I have been put into a year six class. I am really struggling with literacy. Their writing I feel is really poor and they still write with sentences that don't make sense. Last week we did a big write diary and they turned itv into a story instead. I have gone to mark their newspapers today and it is horrific.
    Has anyone any advice on dealing with these problems as I have tried and to no avail. How much do you model?
    How do you look at sentence structure and how it is fit for purpose. Totally stressing.
  2. cally1980

    cally1980 Established commenter

    Proofreading and editing is big in the new curriculum so I would definitely be building this into my planning. They will need to have this modelled quite heavily at first I expect, possibly starting with editing the same piece of writing and comparing with each other, before moving on to their own work. Hopefully this will improve the grammar. If they are mixing genres I think I would err on the side of extra modelling to ensure they stick to the brief! This can be scaled back as they improve.
  3. Camokidmommy

    Camokidmommy Established commenter

    Have you tried using some of Pie Corbetts work on writing. He breaks it down into 3 significant steps and builds up through imitation and innovation. This could help if they are wandering off genre.
  4. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Modelling is still very important in Y6. Also, lots of daily sentence focus where they write sentences linked to some kind of prompt, then practice proof-reading and editing, maybe picking one of them to model how to do this. Visualisers are good for this and also for the proof-reading and editing process. A small point but proof-reading and editing are different things - the first is to correct errors and the second is to improve. Mixed ability learning partners are very good for peer editing and proof-reading.

    I'd also consider a small list of 'non-negotiables' in writing that are always displayed prominently or even stuck into books. A list of things that you absolutely expect to see - joined handwriting, appropriate presentation, accurate spelling, accurate punctuation and everything making sense as a bare minimum. You might differentiate this if a child has a special need but I refuse to mark pieces that don't adhere to the non-negotiables and expect children to remedy any errors in their own time if they don't do it in lesson time. In the majority of cases, if a child in Y6 doesn't use accurate punctuation or make sense in their writing, it's down to laziness or lack of care.

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