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What does Writing look like at South Wonston?


At South Wonston, the teaching of writing is of paramount importance within a broad and balanced curriculum. We believe that writing is a key skill for life both inside and out of education. We intend our children to have developed a love of writing and to be able to express their thoughts and ideas clearly and creatively throughout all subjects and when there is an opportunity to write. We also intend to create writers who can re-read, edit and improve their own writing, and enable pupils to be able to confidently use the essential skills of grammar, punctuation and spelling. We encourage every child to achieve their personal best, applying all their writing skills across the curriculum.

Our aim is to ensure that every child within our school leaves as a capable writer with an understanding of Standard English and when to use it effectively; as well as the ability to write with confidence for a range of purposes and audiences. This ensures that children leave fully prepared and ready to achieve their aspirations and to thrive in their adult lives.

The writing curriculum encourages children to immerse themselves in different high-quality text types, understand the features and impact of these, and realise the importance of them beyond education. We provide children with a range of engaging hooks to capture their imagination! We aim to provide the children with varied reasons for writing and believe that this not only produces higher quality writing but allows our learners to apply their skills to a range of different contexts.

We strive to create a classroom environment and language-rich curriculum where children are exposed to high quality language in varying form in a meaningful, deliberate, and engaging way, involving the pupils as active participants. Language acquisition and its use is at the core of all the reading, writing, and communication we expect of our pupils. We want children to make well-informed and considered word choices to produce confident creative writers, who can compose, edit and improve their writing. A secure knowledge of spelling and grammar and an understanding of how to edit writing is taught throughout the school in a systematic and progressive way. The content of writing lessons is planned to build on children’s previous knowledge as well as introduce new learning in an engaging and memorable way.


The National Curriculum and EYFS Framework is used to inform the planning and delivery of the writing curriculum. Writing is evident in every aspect of our curriculum and varying text types are taught throughout the school. Writing is taught explicitly in daily literacy lessons and skills learnt are regularly reinforced within lessons across the curriculum. Using a combination of novels, films, poetry and relevant real-life events, learning is fun, meaningful, and memorable. Lessons are carefully planned so that skills are taught, embedded, revisited, and then developed in a sequential way which promotes learning and retention of knowledge and skills.

The National Curriculum states that spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing. We use a variety of drama strategies and group work to inspire our writers. Children have opportunities to orally explore a text type before they start to write.

Teachers demonstrate high quality modelling within each Literacy lesson and encourage children to include key vocabulary, structure their work appropriately into coherent paragraphs and use the grammatical skills taught at their year group level.

The use of a WAGOLL (what a good one looks like) is used as an example of how to be successful at the start of each unit of work. This provides children with an end goal. Children are encouraged to use this as a structure but also innovate their writing to make it their own.

We use the CUSP writing structure to plan and deliver our lessons. Each sequence begins with connecting prior learning, explaining a lesson objective, exploring it deeper then applying the learning skill to their own writing. When appropriate, we use the STRONG START modules to revisit objectives and lay the foundations for positive writing outcomes. These focus on sentence composition and manipulation.

We ensure children are aware of their strengths as well as the areas for development in writing, so that learners can take ownership of their progress. Teachers use our marking code to show children where they have met the learning objective (green for growth) and where they can work with the teacher on the learning objective (pink to think). This ensures that children know exactly what they need to do next to make progress in their writing. Children are encouraged to self-edit and respond to feedback (in purple polishing pen) and to support their peers with buddy marking (orange for others).  Children understand the importance of the editing and redrafting process.  All children follow the editing process throughout their work; this allows them to focus on their targets and maintain high expectations of themselves. 

This writing process begins in EYFS with mark making, leading onto letter formation and sentence construction. Children’s fine motor skills are developed through appropriate provision and activities, which allows for children to develop their writing journey.

Spelling is an important skill both in and out of school. Spelling rules are explicitly taught through either Little Wandle or Spelling Shed lessons and within English lessons through modelled/shared writing. There is an expectation that children will spend time at home learning their spellings.

Grammar is explicitly taught across the school as well as integrated into our writing sessions. We use examples of writing to identify how language is used to achieve a desired effect. It is important to understand how different sentences are used for purpose and effect. With this knowledge, we need to link a text together cohesively for effect and purpose.

We expect and encourage children to present their work neatly so handwriting and fine motor skills are taught throughout the school. It is vital for EYFS children to develop strength and muscle control to develop their handwriting skills. Pupils are expected to start using a joined script in Year 2 and continue to develop this into KS2. Handwriting is taught and practised regularly in separate books but is expected to be evidenced throughout all work produced. 


Children enjoy writing within a range of genres. Across the year groups, all children are successful learners as the work is appropriately scaffolded. High level writing models (WAGOLL) are always used to promote effective writing outcomes.

Pupils use oral rehearsal successfully before writing their sentences. They use the editing process to make revisions and improvements to their writing after peer to peer conversations and verbal/written feedback from an adult. Pupils are becoming confident in analysing a text to support their own writing. Following each unit of writing, teachers and pupils evaluate their outcomes using success criteria and assessment for learning checklists. Any gaps in writing are identified and carried forward to future units where necessary. Individual next steps in writing are shared between teacher and pupil to ensure progress.

Writing moderation takes place at least termly and the Senior Leadership Team/Subject Leader monitor the progress of writing throughout the year. Staff have opportunities to discuss pupils’ writing across different year groups and within their phases. Writing books are continuously shared and discussed within each year group to ensure parity between classes. SEN children and vulnerable groups are tracked throughout the year and suitable interventions are put in place to promote accelerated progress.

Opportunities are provided to give greater depth writers the chance to write from a range of view points and to develop a writing style that shows an ability to imitate and experiment with different styles of writing and language

In Year 6, as well as continuous assessment, Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling tests are administered half-termly to assess the impact of the teaching of these areas and identify gaps.

At South Wonston, our teaching of writing not only promotes a love for writing but also develops the children’s imagination and creativity where they are proud of their published purposeful pieces of work.