Writing DNA at Wick
At Wick we believe that learning to write is one of the most important things that a child at primary school will learn. Children use their writing in almost all other subjects of the curriculum. Good writing also gives children a voice to share their ideas with the world. Writing makes a significant contribution to the development of children as thinkers and learners and independence, creativity and individuality is encouraged.
How is Writing taught at Wick?
At Wick, children are given regular opportunities to write to inform, persuade and entertain through daily lessons. These are based around a key text, which can, where appropriate, be linked to the term’s topic or Science work. Whilst studying these texts, they will write fiction, non-fiction and sometimes poetry. In each of the units, children will be introduced to a model of excellence (WAGOLL) to show the expectation for the piece of work. Within the unit grammar and spelling objectives will be introduced. As part of each unit, new vocabulary is also introduced through spelling lessons and the Model of Excellence. The meanings are investigated and the children are expected to use it in their writing. Each classroom has a Literacy learning Wall where key learning examples are displayed as a tool for the children to use. All types of writing taught are practised at appropriate opportunities in other areas of the curriculum. IN EYFS children are taught to form their letters using pre-cursive so that in year 1 they are ready to join. Handwriting is practised in all classes to ensure presentation is of a high standard.
All planning follows 3 plans and depends on the genre you are teaching. They are delivered through flip charts. These plans can be found below.
As well as being taught through the writing teaching sequence and the new vocabulary, spelling is taught through explicit lessons twice a week in Years 2-4 through the Read, Write, Inc. scheme. A new spelling rule is taught every fortnight and children are tested on the rule at the end of the sequence. Further drip feed lessons and tests are given at the end of the term to embed the rule. At the start of each term copies of the rules and lists of words are sent home via Google classrooms and the class website page.
Grammar is taught in years 1-6 through the writing teaching sequence and practiced and used within the writing produced. SpaG.com is used to support years 5-6 and is used as part of their homework jigsaw.
All writing displays in all classrooms follow the same format. They will display the book cover and give the title of the book and author. There will be an area for vocabulary and then the rest of the wall will have the ARE's the children are covering in the unit of learning will examples. The idea of the wall is that it is used by the teacher to model excellence but also for the children to constantly use to support them in their writing. See examples below.
How is Writing assessed at Wick?
We assess writing throughout each lesson and mark the work completed according to our marking policy. When we find that children have not achieved the expected outcome for a lesson, they are given extra support, either during assembly time or the next lesson. Children who are above the standard are given extra goals and encouraged to attend a lunchtime writing club. They are also given the opportunity to apply their skills in other areas e.g. writing items for the newsletter.
Writing is also assessed using the school’s ‘Age Related Expectations’ (AREs) 4 times a year. From this, we can see any gaps in progress and we can prioritise support for individuals for the following term.
Children are assessed at the end of Years 2 and 6 for the end of Key Stage Statutory Assessments (SATs).
If you would like any more information, please speak to Mrs Bettridge, who is our Writing subject leader or our English governor.
500 word competition. Why not enter?
Children are welcome to write a short story at home and submit their entry to the competition for the chance to win the following: “As well attending a spectacular 500 Words Final at Buckingham Palace where superstar celebrities will read the winning stories live on the radio, six amazing illustrators: Tony Ross, Fiona Lumbers, David McKee, Sue Cheung, David Roberts, and Margaret Sturton – will each be set the task of illustrating one of the winning stories.
The winners in each age category will also receive:
Gold Winners - Chris Evans' height in books and 500 books for their school.
Silver Winners - HRH The Duchess of Cornwall's height in books.
Bronze Winners - Their own height in books.”
Have a look online to find out more!
We were so lucky this week to be joined by two local authors Chris Vick and Sophie Kirtley. They gave an inspiring whole school assembly where they shared their writing journeys and what inspires them to write. Later they gave two workshops to years 5 and 6. Here the children were given time to plan a story after choosing a mystery object, whilst being expertly guided to write. The children really enjoyed being given the freedom to write without limitations and all were sad to stop when the session ended! The rest of the school also wrote their own stories and shared some in assembly today. It was wonderful to hear them. Let’s hope this leads to more children really starting to enjoy writing and understanding the joy it can bring.