Writing Intent Statement
At Parc Eglos we aim to for our children to become writers who are alive to the power of words. In striving to communicate through writing we aim to develop children’s understanding of how to engage the reader when writing for a range of purposes.
We aspire for our children to be curious, creative and imaginative writers, who draw on first-hand experiences and the world of their reading, when crafting pieces of writing. In developing resilience as writers, we feel strongly that children need to understand that writing is a process, in which writers journey over time. From playing with and exploring language, to refining their work using their knowledge of language features, grammar and punctuation, they strive to communicate clearly and in an increasingly engaging way. We want children to aspire to be the best writers they can be, drawing on all the Parc Eglos Virtues in the process of their writing so that they can feel proud not only of their published piece but also the journey they have been on to achieve it.
Please click here to see our Writing Intent, Implementation and Impact Statement (curriculum statement)
Parc Eglos Writing Key Concepts
At Parc Eglos we have introduced the following seven key concepts for writing. These key concepts focus on approaches to writing/writing strategies that we feel it is essential for children to develop in order to become confident writers able to engage their reader. Our key concepts are progressive starting in our school Nursery (EYFS1) and continuing through to Year 6. By using these key concepts to structure our approach to writing the aim is that, by the time children leave Parc Eglos, they are (in the words of our writing intent statement) ‘the best writers they can be….alive to the power of words’.
This is our ‘Parc Eglos Writing Map’ (click here) showing the different genres/text types covered by our children as they journey through the school. Many of our units are based on the ‘Talk 4 Writing’ approach to writing – as developed by Pie Corbett and his team (see further information here). We are also currently trialling the approach used by Jane Considine (click here). The key aspect of all approaches used, and one that we feel is key to our children becoming successful writers, is the emphasis placed on teacher modelling. Teacher modelling is a specific strategy which allows the teacher to explicitly demonstrate the process of writing by ‘thinking aloud’ as they records their thoughts; for example, planning what they intend to write, talking about the impact they are aiming to have on their reader and how this impacts on their choice of words. In this way, teacher modelling of writing becomes a powerful vehicle for demonstrating writerly behaviours we would like the children to develop (see our ‘Writing Key Concepts’). We believe that, by modelling the complicated process that writing is, teachers will be supporting children to become (in the words of our intent statement) ‘curious, creative and imaginative writers who are alive to the power of words’ and who understand ‘how to engage the reader when writing for a range of purposes’.
In order to help children develop a growing wider vocabulary, teachers model an interest in words and their meanings, engaging in conversations with children around vocabulary from their class and individual texts. Teachers model the process of collecting and then choosing the best words for the writer’s intention. Teachers aim to develop a love of words and an understanding that the greater a person’s vocabulary the more able they are to express shades of meaning. All texts used in class are seen (by teachers and children) as opportunities for magpie-ing vocabulary to use as writers and recording them in their ‘Writer’s Notebooks’.
Rehearsing ideas (either orally or mentally) before writing them down is a crucial writing strategy. Writing is inexplicably linked to oracy. Through ‘Talk for Writing’, collaborative discussion, drafting and redrafting, children are encouraged to rehearse (through speaking, doing and recording) their writing – with an awareness of audience and purpose.
Purple Polishing (and editing)
Writing is a craft/process. As part of understanding this, children will be explicitly taught how to purple polish their work and be given time to do this. As children progress through the school they will increasingly be taught/expected to purple polish their work in light of reflecting against success criteria.
Writing is a process of exploration and experimentation – with words, sentences structures, punctuation, ideas and language features. In any writing unit children will be given opportunities to play with elements of their writing and reflect upon how effectively what they have created fulfils their intention.
Writing needs to be thoughtfully structured with an awareness of reader and purpose. Children should be taught how to construct phrases, sentences, paragraphs and texts but also encouraged to play with these structures. In order to support children developing awareness of structure children will be scaffolded by models and images – for example story mountains, mind maps and paraburgers. Different approaches to planning will be introduced to children and modelled in order to support children’s ability to organise their thoughts prior to starting to write.
Writers are collectors of words, ideas, language features, information, life experiences (their own and other people’s). In any writing process, children need to be given opportunities to immerse themselves in experiences and texts from which they can collect elements to help them write.
Writing requires fluency on a number of different levels.
- Transcriptional fluency – for example handwriting and spelling
- Grammatical fluency – first orally and then in writing, becoming fluent with elements such as verb tenses, sentence construction etc.
- Text fluency (Does my text flow?) – Children need to become fluent in presenting ideas, events and information sequentially. This will require lots of re-reading and redrafting.
- Genre fluency – children need to become fluent in using the features of different genres/text types. This will develop as they progress through the school