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Clowne Infant & Nursery School

‘We take our children on a journey of discovery, giving them aspirations and engaging them in lifelong learning’

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Writing

Writing at Clowne Infant and Nursery School

At Clowne Infant and Nursery School we aim for children to communicate through writing and become independent writers.  We teach writing skills in specific ways throughout our curriculum, along a progression of skills.  We see writing as cross-curricular with strong links to reading and speaking and listening as well as all other subject areas and aim to give our children as many exciting experiences, purposes and opportunities to write as possible so they see writing as part of everyday life and enjoy writing.

How do we teach writing? 

In Foundation Stage one (FS1/nursery) and Foundation Stage two (FS2/reception) writing is currently taught following the Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework 2017 and to support the implementation of this teachers also use the non- statutory guidance Development Matters 2012.

See documents below.

In Key Stage one (year 1 and year 2) writing is taught following the National Curriculum for English.

See document below.

We teach writing in specific ways throughout our curriculum, along a progression of skills and writing is included in our English Curriculum Intent. See the documents below for further information.

Writing has two key elements which are transcription (spelling and handwriting) and composition (saying ideas and then structuring them into speech and writing).  We teach transcription through phonic based letters and sounds lessons, spelling, grammar, punctuation and handwriting and provide opportunities to practice these skills throughout other areas of the curriculum.   See our phonics web page to find out what phonics is and how we teach this.

We teach composition skills through role play, a wealth of activities we provide for children to experience, speaking and listening and vocabulary development, class discussions, listening to stories, guided reading, specific topic writing lessons, and throughout all areas of the curriculum.

Foundation Stages 1 and 2 (nursery and reception)

 

In the foundation stage activities planned to support the development of pupils writing are contained within literacy, communication and language and physical development. 

 

In nursery topics are planned around the children’s interests and a wide range of pre-writing (including spoken language) and mark making activities are on offer as part of the rich continuous provision for children to independently explore daily.  Teachers and teaching assistants observe and interact with children during their self-initiated activities to develop and accelerate their language and writing skills.  Children are encouraged during small group adult-led letters and sound sessions to first hear and say and afterwards write letter shapes for sounds they have been learning.  Children who are ready are encouraged to recognise and begin to write the letter sounds in their name.

 

Reception have a wide range of writing activities planned as part of the rich continuous provision for children to explore daily during exploring time when children engage in self-initiated activities and teachers and teaching assistants observe and interact with children to develop their writing skills.  Specific writing areas are set up to encourage and motivate children to write.  Reception children take part in adult–led dough disco sessions to strengthen and develop children’s finger and hand muscles in preparation for writing.  Reception children have a daily letters and sounds lesson in which children practice hearing, reading and writing letter sounds. 

Reception children have focused writing sessions most weeks in which they can practice skills learnt in a small adult-led group.  The writing focus for each writing session is based on the reception curriculum topics to give children a clear purpose for their writing.  Children in reception have adult-led communication and language and physical development focused tasks which also develop writing skills.  See our curriculum page for more information about specific topics in reception.

Key Stage one (KS1) – year 1 and year 2

 

 

Writing in KS1 is taught though daily letters and sounds sessions in which children learn to use phonics to write sounds, words, captions and sentences as well as learning handwriting, punctuation, spelling, grammar and English vocabulary.  Children in years 1 and 2 have writing lessons following our topic focus each term to give children a purpose for their writing.  See our curriculum web page and year 1 and 2 web pages for curriculum topic plans.  We cover a wide variety of writing genre in KS1 including writing, lists, recipes and instructions, character descriptions, stories, non-fiction, reports, recounts, reviews, postcards or letters, poems.  We also write throughout other curriculum subject areas to explain our ideas, thinking, knowledge and learning.

How to help your child with writing at home

 

  • Create lots of opportunities to listen to your child and talk with them about everyday experiences to develop vocabulary and language for writing.
  • Plan a variety of experiences for your child, even going on different walk or to a different place because ideas for writing can come from our experiences in life.
  • Read regularly with your child as reading a wide variety of stories and books leads to better language, vocabulary, writing ideas and knowledge of written texts. 
  • Provide role play dress up or character figures  so that your child can explore their imagination which feeds into ideas for writing.
  • Make writing a part of everyday life at home and make it fun by playing little word games or writing alphabetical lists of names, animals, toys, food or shopping lists, writing cards or letters to friends or family. 
  • Provide different materials to write with pencils, chalk on paths, fun pens, brushes and paint all helps to develop fine motor hand eye co-ordination and develops mark making. 
  • Give young children activities involving using large tweezers, threading beads or cheerios onto spaghetti, using playdough to develop small motor movements for gripping and controlling a pencil and developing the hand strength needed to write. 
  • Create a quiet comfortable writing space with a clipboard or a desk so you child can practice their writing without too many distractions. 
  • Find worksheets that show children how to trace over or form their letters correctly, beginning and ending in the correct place and going in the correct direction.
  • Model writing, let children see you writing or write short silly rhymes together.
  • Provide children with a special writing journal or diary they could write in every day which also helps children explore their own thoughts and feelings as well as developing writing fluency too.
  • Practice spelling key words in a fun way and don’t worry if they are not always correct first time, making mistakes is all part of learning.  Just encourage your child to look carefully at the letters in order and have another go maybe write it in different colours each time. 
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