Tag Archives: creative writing

Request a FREE copy of the Tips for Writing reference booklet!

How much support should you give your pupils for creative writing tasks?

Supporting pupils with creative writing tasks is something of a balancing act. Too much support and it affects pupils’ creativity. Too little support and it affects pupils’ writing. To add to this, each pupil is likely to need a different level of support – more so if you are teaching a group of pupils with mixed abilities.

Boost Creative Writing is a series packed with planning sheets to support primary school pupils with their creative writing tasks. They are particularly helpful for slower learners since they provide additional reinforcement of key skills and non-prescriptive writing scaffolds. The structured sheets cover a range of writing genres, from stories and poems to book reviews and newspaper reports.

Boost Creative Writing for Years 5-6 also includes a handy Tips for Writing section which can be copied and bound to make a useful reference booklet for each child. In fact, we are giving Tips for Writing away for FREE as a pdf – click here to request your free reference booklet.

We hope your pupils enjoy using their booklets.

It's fun to write - tip sheets

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, English, How children learn, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, National Curriculum, Primary school, Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND), Teaching Ideas

Why do we have creative writing?

The imaginative use of words within a story goes back to the earliest days of humanity.  And it still serves a purpose today.

Humankind has always told stories.  Everything from cave pictures to monuments like Stonehenge, from tales told around the flickering fire to the greatest cathedrals tell us about events, locations, and people that we cannot see.

Indeed it appears to be fundamental to our human psyches to want to hear stories, and as a result there is every reason for all of us to want to tell them too. 

For the ability to appreciate and explore this basic human instinct comes from our own experiences of making up stories of our own.   Indeed such invention allows us to share our experiences and entertain others as we seek to make sense of the mysterious world around us.

But, of course, storytelling does not come naturally to us all, and many children – especially those with special needs – require additional support if the skill is to be nurtured and developed.

For the storyteller needs to consider key issues such as where the story takes place, who or what is in this place, are there animals here that have human characteristics.  Or could it be an object that has feelings?

And in worlds where everything is possible, how can we express ourselves?  What new words and expressions do we need?  How does the story evolve?  What is happening around our central event or person?  What happens next?

Most children – irrespective of their needs and abilities – only come to understand the exploration of such issues through being prompted via their own story writing, which is why the “Boost Creative Writing” series exists. 

The activities here provide the support and help that children of differing abilities need, and you can see how we achieve this through the examples from the series on our website where you will also find details of how to order.

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, English, How children learn, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Primary school, Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND), Teaching Ideas

What is the easiest way to help and encourage children to write using varied sentence structures?

It is difficult to think of much in the English language that is more complex than a sentence.

It can be short.  It can alternatively be very long and involve all sorts of diversions along the way before reaching its final conclusion, which in this case might be that it is the sheer variety of sentence structures that cause the problem with teaching sentence structure.

And having written that sentence, we might then think it was too complex anyway.

But whatever way we look at it, by 11 pupils of all abilities are expected to be able to write using varied sentence structures.

Thus the question arises: what is the most effective way of helping children meet this aim of being able to write in this manner?

Answering this question is made all the harder to answer because many children do seem to pick up the concept of varied sentence structures simply from their reading and from hearing varied adult conversation.

So we’ve been working on this issue for some time, and we’ve come up with a series of ready-made 15-minute sessions that build on each other.

By completing the daily sessions, pupils will have at their fingertips a system for creating imaginative and interesting writing in as little as six weeks.  As a result attainment within all ability ranges increases.

And there is one added bonus. For most children exposure to the 15 minute sessions not only shows them how to write varied, meaningful sentences, but it also raises confidence and self-esteem, thus enhancing achievement in all school subjects that are language based.

There are more details on how the “Daily Sentence Structure” programme works here.

The programme is available as a printed book and an ebook and can be ordered from our website. www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/book/daily-sentence-structures-2nd-edition-667

If you have any questions please do contact us. Our details are on our website: https://www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/contact-us

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, English, homework, Key Stage 2, Primary school, Teaching Ideas

From one oxymoron to another

It could be argued that any creative writing that your pupils are required to undertake as part of the curriculum is something of an oxymoron. You must encourage your pupils to think outside the box whilst providing evidence that they can use fronted adverbials, adjective-packed noun phrases, and other grammatical structures.

Moving from one oxymoron to another, the Brilliant Activities for Creative Writing Series Pack will help pupils to understand how to plan their writing whilst allowing their imagination to run freely by encouraging them to talk about their ideas, try out sentences orally, and listen to others’ comments about their work. What could be more of an oxymoron than encouraging children to talk in a writing lesson!?

With meaningful discussion and careful questioning from yourself, your pupils’ writing skills will flourish.

Click here for more information and to see sample pages

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, English, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Primary school

We are GIVING AWAY a handy reference booklet for developing writing skills!

…from a dictionary and a map, to a ruler that I snapped! Continue reading

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, English, How children learn, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Primary school, Teaching Ideas

Can exams improve teaching practice?

A recent article in Singapore’s Strait Times, says that the Ministry of Education is changing the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) composition paper, to give more scope for creativity. Instead of pupils being asked to write a story on a given picture or scenario, they will be given three pictures offering three different angles of interpretation to guide them in their writing. Pupils will be allowed to choose to write a story based on one, two or all three of the pictures.

It is hoped that this will encourage teachers to allow pupils to be more creative in their writing.

http://www.straitstimes.com/forum/letters-in-print/schools-making-progress-in-nurturing-creativity

In announcing the new changes, Mr Ong, the Acting Minister for Education, said, ‘If we can produce a Singapore version of J. K. Rowling, the economic spin-off will surely be incalculable.’

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Filed under Assesssment, English, News

Developing pupils’ creative writing skills

How can structure and flexibility be combined to develop your pupils’ creative writing skills?

In developing pupils’ creativity it is, of course, essential that they are given the flexibility to explore ideas and avenues. But at the same time their creative writing needs to be structured and formatted. Indeed it can be argued that all creative work of value has some sort of structure, even if it is not always self-evident.
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Filed under English, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Primary school