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Supporting groups in writing

Discussion in 'Primary' started by lillipad, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Hi all, am still on a mission to self improve this year!

    Am now thinking about writing- wondering what you do when working with groups during Literacy to support writing. I think i'm good at helping them, but not good at extending them. What sort of things do you ask to challenge them etc? Because often I end up marking their work but think I should be modelling writing and writing with them and things? Helllllp!
     
  2. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Hi all, am still on a mission to self improve this year!

    Am now thinking about writing- wondering what you do when working with groups during Literacy to support writing. I think i'm good at helping them, but not good at extending them. What sort of things do you ask to challenge them etc? Because often I end up marking their work but think I should be modelling writing and writing with them and things? Helllllp!
     
  3. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    That is what I do. I write and ask for improvements and make comments and challenge them through talk. It means they concentrate on the improving not on the actual physical writing.
    Today, I had no TA for the lesson, so my four groups were:

    Top: Writing a character description of Mrs Large (from our story telling sessions) with printed SC that I had gone through with them first.

    Upper middle: With me writing sentences that describe Mrs Large and improving them, using good vocab, and connectives. They came up with some fabulous ones in the end that they wouldn't have done by themselves. I scribed.

    Lower middle: They wrote their own brilliant sentence describing Mrs Large on a whiteboard, having done the above activity with me yesterday. All but one of them had a because or but in their sentence. Last week when describing themselves, they barely wrote proper sentences at all. (I photocopied their whiteboards to put their work on display.)

    Lowest (more or less non-writers): Drew the characters with printed SC. They had to make sure the characters were the correct size, wearing the right kind of clothes (pyjamas in our story) and be able to say which was which and why.

    OK this is just today, but it shows the kind of thing that targeted group work can achieve.
     
  4. In my mixed KS2 class this afternoon we were writing story openings in the style of roald Dahl, based on traditional tales. I worked with the lower ability doing a guided writing session, with each child focusing on one sentence at a time but all of us sharing ideas and helping each other out. that way I could frame what they were writing: they had to write one catchy opening sentence, one introducing Jack (our traditional tale was Jack and the Beanstalk), one introducing his mother, one telling the reader about how poor they were, and which introduced and described the cow.
    My middle ability group had a little extra TA input. They were basing their work on the Three Little Pigs, so she prompted them to think about who they would need to introduce, what they would need to describe, and what their predicament was. The TA then prowled the group as they wrote, asking them to improve words, check punctuation, edit for sense, etc.
    The higher ability were able to choose their own traditional tale, and they wrote independently with SC we generated as a whole class. Their extension was to try and include two examples of the Alan Peat sentence type we are working on at the moment.
    They enjoyed it so much, they asked if they could carry on for a bit longer after lunch! I've had a quick skim through their work so far, and there's some pretty good stuff been written.

     

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