Talk4Writing at Sir Henry Fermor
At Sir Henry Fermor we have recently reviewed our approach to teaching writing. All members of classroom staff have received Talk4Writing training from experienced trainer Dean Thompson. This has led to teachers and support staff adapting this approach in order to enthuse children and create articulate and passionate writers.
Before any topic, children are assessed using what is known as a Cold Task. This cold task allows the teacher to assess the child’s current understanding of certain writing features and plan for individual and whole class targets. This should then inform the model text which can be adapted to meet the needs of the targets. After the cold task and planning, the Talk4Writing process follows three main stages.
The first stage of the three is the Imitation Stage. It is during this stage that the children will learn a text orally. The internalisation of a text helps children to learn the structures of different text genres and themes as well as imprinting exciting vocabulary and phrases into their long term memory.
During this stage children will also look closely at the structure of the writing and focus on the grammar of the text before creating a writer’s toolkit. This toolkit will aid children through the next two phases of learning and will scaffold the learning; ensuring progress is achievable by all.
Once the text is embedded and children have a clear understanding, we progress onto the Innovation Stage. This is when children will begin to think about writing their own stories using what they have learnt so far. During the innovation stage, teachers will model writing a story closely linked to the story that is learnt. Children will participate with learning through a process called shared writing in which the teacher scaffolds children’s ideas and models how to up level and form exciting and engaging writing.
After the shared writing has been completed, children plan their own adaptations of the shared writing before forming their own story linked closely to the model text. This is an opportunity for children to use the language and grammatical features they have learned as well as further internalising different text structures.
The final stage of the Talk4Writing process is allowing the children to be completely creative; this is called the Invention Stage but is also known as Independent Application. This is the opportunity for children to show everything they have learnt through the previous two stages and apply it to a piece of writing completely of their own making. The children will still follow a basic progression of planning the text before writing their own text and then editing and redrafting their writing. This give teachers the chance to assess learning and progress and plan for next steps.
If you are interested further in the Talk4Writing process, more information can be found at http://www.talk4writing.co.uk/.