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Click here to see our long term plan for writing.

writing (1)

At Burley St Matthias we teach writing through Pie Corbett's Talk for Writing approach. 

The Talk for Writing approach enables children to read and write independently for a variety of audiences and purposes within different subjects. A key feature is that children internalise the language structures needed to write through ‘talking the text’, as well as close reading. The approach moves from dependence towards independence, with the teacher using shared and guided teaching to develop the ability in children to write creatively and powerfully.

We underpin our English work with our core reading spine of quality fiction, poetry and non-fiction that all children experience and draw upon. Imaginative units of work are developed to create a whole-school plan that is constantly being refined and adapted to suit our children's needs. For  more information about the approach see the Talk for Writing website.


In Reception Class, we have just started to use the Drawing Club approach to writing. Based around the Golden Blend of picture books, tales and animations, it involves a short period of Time Together as a whole class followed by time with children exploring their ideas and creativity that can be adapted to how the teachers believe is best. 

Drawing Club is an approach designed by Greg Bottrill that immerses children into a world full of imagination. At Burley we fully embrace drawing club and can see the joy it brings to our children. It is through drawing club that we open up the magic world of tales and story to children whilst at the same time enriching their language skills, developing their fine motor skills and sharing a really special time with them. Drawing Club is a fantastic place to start a child’s experience of school ‘Literacy’. 

Drawing Club is based upon the 3M principle. These are making conversation, mark making and mathematics. We use a book, traditional tale or an animation as a portal for the week. Children learn new, exciting vocabulary that we revisit each day of the week. We draw characters on a Monday, settings on a Tuesday and we ‘wonder’ on a Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. 

We add maths to our drawings by talking about shapes, doubling, halving, addition, subtraction etc… We might be drawing a troll with a spherical shaped head, 2 strong, wiry hairs on his chin and double this amount coming out of each ear. He has one more than 4 buttons on his filthy, ripped shirt.  Children observe as the teacher models drawing club each morning and then get the opportunity to complete their own drawings. They can borrow ideas from the teacher or create their own amazing ideas to share.  One of the most exciting parts of Drawing Club is adding secret symbols and passwords to our drawings. We always draw a secret symbol that can make anything happen! Sometimes we press them and aliens or unicorns become three times bigger, pencils turn into chocolate or hair turns multi-coloured! We then add a password to make the secret symbol work. This can be a mark, letter, digraph (2 letters that make one sound), a word or a sentence. As children make progress and become more confident with their phonics, their passwords develop and move towards phrases and sentences.  

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