At Saint Cecilia's, we love to write! We take our inspiration from many sources and stimuli including books, trips and days out, audio and video clips and our own experiences. We work on our sentence structure and vocabulary coupled with adding dramatic conventions such as tension and suspense with the aim of bringing our writing to life.
You can find out what we are up to by visiting out Twitter page @StCeciliascjs
And search for the following hashtag;
Writing Workshop for Parents and Children
On Thursday 6th of March 2020, we hosted our first ever writing workshop for parents and children. Fourteen parents came to school to work with their children to compose a piece of writing. Hosted by our English coordinator, Mr McCann, and ably assisted by the school's writing advocates, the workshop was modelled on the type of lesson that the children would be taught in school on a daily basis. The participants were welcomed with drinks and homemade baking by Mrs Morris before settling in to the session.
After matching some vocabulary with their definitions, a video was played as a stimulus before language was drawn out from the children as well as the adults, who were being transported back to their own school days. Having used some Alan Peat sentence types to compose sentences, the children and parents worked in smaller groups to produce a piece of writing from a range of genres. The session finished with the children reading out their finished pieces while applause and praise was offered from all present. It was a wonderful, enjoyable and educational afternoon. Thank you to all who were involved.
"It was fun and informative for both parents and children. A great insight into how writing is taught, thank you Mr McCann!"
"I really enjoyed the session with Mr McCann."
"Well thought out and planned, very entertaining and engaging for both parents and children."
"Very insightful. Good fun. I really enjoyed a bit of time with my child during school :)"
"Very well delivered. Pitched well without making anyone feel uncomfortable about contributing. Enjoyable session."
"I really enjoyed being part of Mr McCann's session. It really gave me an insight in to how English is being taught in the school, I am very impressed."
"Excellent session, really impressed by the content and the level our children are learning at! It definitely put my brain to the test and I have a couple of journalism qualifications!"
"This was a brilliant exercise involving the children and parents. Well done to all involved."
"The session was very informative. I really enjoyed the hour and it allowed me to see what my child is being taught. Thank you."
Each class has a Writing Ambassador who helps the teacher promote a love and enthusiasm of writing within the classroom and beyond. This year, we hope to achieve the Liverpool Writing Quality Mark accreditation and these fabulous children will play a huge part.
Writers of the Week
Every week, each class choose a Writer of the Week. The recipient will have impressed the staff with their attitude and effort in the writing opportunities provided for them. The winners are announced each week during whole school assembly and are presented with a certificate.
Below is a breakdown of what books each class will read throughout the year. Teachers will read, discuss and evaluate the texts and provide opportunities for the children to write based on themes brought up by each book.
"I really like writing; it gives me confidence. I'm going to become a writer when I'm older."
My favourite piece of writing this year was about the Stone Age - it's part of our History topic."
I get lots of praise for using good vocabulary. Teachers give us lots of ideas and tips to improve our writing."
- Corey (year 3)
"I like writing: it's interesting and it allows me to express my ideas."
I loved writing a newspaper report this year. I wrote it about The Three Little Pigs. I got to tell the story but in a different genre - I'd never really thought about writing that way before."
Teachers always explain tasks to us and they use different ways to inspire us such as books, sound clips, video clips, objects, feely bags and pictures."
- Meadow (year 4)
"I like writing a lot. This year, I loved writing a diary entry about a Victorian child. It was linked to our History topic and allowed me to step into the shoes of a Victorian child."
"Teachers help us in writing lessons by modelling a piece of writing of their own on the board. They always ask us how we can help them to make their work better. I think it's their way of getting us to think about how we can make sure our work is the best we can produce."
"I love co-operative feedback because it helps me improve my work; it's also an opportunity to see what others have written and maybe f=get some ideas for future writing."
- Caitlin (year 5)
"I like writing, it's an opportunity to be creative. My favourite piece of writing this year was my poem about the seasons. I used imagery and personification to describe and contrast between each of the four seasons."
"Teachers inspire us to write because they teach us in a creative way."
"We use co-operative feedback to up-level our work and help each other to make fewer mistakes."
- Grace (year 6)
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 1 - Why every child should have a pet
During lock-down, the children were challenged to write a persuasive text arguing that all children should have a pet. Have a read at some of these wonderful examples.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 2 - Instructional Writing & a challenge set by Frank Cottrell Boyce
This week's lock-down challenge was to use up all the remaining Easter chocolate creating sweet treats whilst also writing a concise set of instructions to follow. Some children got involved in a challenge set by Frank Cottrell Boyce. Have a read at their wonderful work.
Maisie (Year 6)
Maisie tuned in to Frank Cottrell Boyce's online lesson this week and got involved, her task was to write a letter to her future self. All children's work during lock-down is posted on our school Twitter account (@StCeciliascjs) and, when we put Maisie's work on Twitter, we tagged Frank Cottrell Boyce in. We were delighted when we noticed that Maisie's letter was read out on Instagram by actress Annabelle Dowler. This a fabulous achievement for Maisie, we are so proud of her.
Click on or copy the link into your browser to hear Maisie's letter.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 3 - Poetry
This week's lock-down challenge was linked to World Superhero Day on the 28th of April. The children were challenged to write a poem about someone they regard as a hero but without choosing sports stars, popstars, movie stars etc. The response was fantastic and our children produced some fabulous poetry. Mia (Y4) composed some excellent information texts about animals while Grace (Y4) had her book review published on Amazon. Have a read at their wonderful work.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 4 - Diary Entries
This week's lock-down challenge was linked to VE Day on the 8th of May. The children were challenged to consider what the original VE Day was like and transport themselves back there in order to write a diary entry of the day. All work submitted was wonderful giving a real flavour of what went on on that day. The emotive language used was outstanding; conveying a range of feelings from joviality to relief. Well done to all children who got involved. Have a read through some of their fantastic writing.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 5 - Biographical Writing
This week's lock-down challenge was linked to Art. The children were challenged to research and write a biography based on the artist they are studying in their year group; Georges Seurat (3), Andy Warhol (4), Leonardo DaVinci (5) and Claude Monet (6). Well done to all children who got involved. Have a read through some of their fantastic writing, I think you'll agree that the standard is exceptional.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 6 - Letters
The lock-down challenge before half-term was linked to PSHE. The children were challenged to write a letter to their future selves to describe lockdown life. Well done to all children who got involved. Why don't you have a read through their fabulous work?
Home Schooling Writing Challenge 7 - Explanation Texts
Last week’s writing challenge was a test of the children's know how and your patience! Linked with DT, the children were tasked with explaining a device or a modern invention to a grandparent or someone from the past. Have a read at yet more fantastic writing.
Homeschooling Writing Challenge 8 - Letters about Littering
This lockdown challenge involved writing a formal letter to the Environment Secretary appealing for help in relation to the littering problem we have in society. The children showed fantastic passion and emotion in coming up with such wonderful letters. Well done to all children who got involved. Why don't you have a read through their fabulous work?
Year 6 have been writing balanced arguments about the age-old debate, whether school uniforms should be banned.
The children have debated and planned their work and have come up with some wonderful pieces of thought-provoking writing. In writing, we use a co-operative feedback technique to help improve and appreciate all our efforts.