We believe that all children should leave primary school as confident writers.
To help develop writing skills we use a range of techniques. English is taught in blocks of work that last for roughly 2 to 4 weeks. We use ideas from the ‘Big Write’ system to support our teaching. Before the unit starts the children often produce a piece of writing (known as a cold task) in the form that is going to be taught to allow teachers to identify the skills the children need to develop. The Big Write is a system that has been developed that focuses on children developing their spelling, grammar and creative writing skills in a systematic way. Spellings and grammar are discretely taught and include extending vocabulary, sentence starters, punctuation and connectives. Each year group builds on the learning of the previous year and the VCOP (vocabulary, connectives, openers and punctuation) games and activities are taught in short, manageable sessions. At the end of each block of work the children then use these skills in a final piece of writing (known as a hot task) where they are asked to use all the skills they have been taught.
We also draw on other successful techniques such as ‘Talk for Writing’ where children learn and rehearse key texts learning the feel and language used, discovering the tools used make the text, before imitating this with the teacher modeling how writing is put together and finally the children use this to create their own writing. It is a powerful way of developing language and grammar skills.