Writing is centered on high quality, diverse and inclusive texts ensuring children are exposed to a range of literature that reflects the local community in the school as well as the wider world.
Writing in EYFS
Fine and Gross Motor Skills
In the EYFS, writing begins with movement.
Learning to write is a key part of a child’s physical development.
Before teaching children to hold mark making tools, it is essential for the children to develop their fine and gross motor skills.
Gross motor skills are essential for the development of fine motor movement.
Gross motor skills help children to develop:
- control and coordination of their large and whole body movements.
At school, the children have an opportunity to develop these skills by:
- Learning to ride a tricycle and scooter.
- Climbing, sliding, crawling on our outdoor climbing frame.
- Weekly ballet sessions to explore balance, control of movement and learning various ways of moving (e.g. skipping, trotting, hopping).
- Running, controlling speed and avoiding obstacles when exploring the outside space.
- Building and constructing using large wooden blocks outside
- Digging using a spade
Fine motor skills involve the development of the muscles that control the hand, fingers, thumb and wrist. At school, the children enhance their fine motor skills by:
- Holding cutlery to feed themselves.
- Zipping and unzipping their clothing.
- Using playdough to explore rolling, patting, squashing and poking.
- Malleable and sensory based activities using corn flour, rice, pasta, jelly and bubbles.
- Water play to explore pouring, squeezing and stirring.
- Painting and exploring the correlation between movement and mark making.
Mark Making and Writing in Nursery
Mark making is an essential part of the writing process in nursery. Mark making is a physical and sensory activity that supports the children’s hand-eye coordination and develops their creativity.
The children explore the link between movements and marks using a variety of malleable and sensory methods. They have access to mark making all around the indoor and outdoor classroom on a small and large scale.
When a child is ready and shows an increased interest in writing such as giving meaning to their marks, drawing in detail and copying letters or numbers. We ensure every child has exciting and meaningful opportunities to embed their writing skills. We also aim for every child to be able to write their own name by the end of the nursery year as we believe this is an empowering skill for a child to have before they enter Reception.
Writing in Reception
In the Reception year, fine and gross motor skill development continues to be a central part of our continuous provision.
The children will learn how to correctly form letters during their daily Phase Two phonics lessons. As they progress, they will also learn how to apply their phonic knowledge when writing independently. The children’s learning experiences will provide them with rich and meaningful opportunities to embed their writing skills.
The children have opportunities to write in a variety of contexts such:
- Writing a shopping list
- Labelling items
- Writing a letter and address or name on an envelope
- Writing a story with a focus on narrative structure
- Writing cards or postcards for special occasions
- Writing captions for small books
Through these types of writing opportunities, the children are able to make purposeful links between writing, their imagination and the real world. As the children approach the end of Reception, we expect every child to use their phonics skills to write a sentence containing irregular common words that can be read by themselves and others.
Writing at Marlborough is centered on:
- high quality
- diverse and
- inclusive texts
ensuring children are exposed to a range of literature that reflects the local community in the school as well as the wider world. The books have diverse themes, authors and characters allowing our children to ‘see’ themselves in the texts.
- invest in the characters
- have a deep understanding of a text
This allows for more opportunity for extended pieces of writing with a core focus on purpose and audience and enables children to draw on what they have read as models for their own writing.
Our aim is for the children to understand the importance of:
- writing purposefully
- demonstrate an awareness of the audience through their language selection
- explore and learn new vocabulary in both reading and writing
Children make links with known and new vocabulary allowing them to have a rich and varied bank of language to apply to their writing. Children manipulate and use a range of grammar and punctuation to enhance meaning and reflect the formality of the writing task.
We also ensure that pupils have frequent opportunities to write more independently.
Summary of Writing at Marlborough:
- 5 writing (English) lessons per week
- Handwriting once per week (following the Nelson scheme)
- Spelling taught explicitly twice a week (following the Spelling Shed scheme)
- Knowledge organisers are completed and in books for each writing unit
- The writing process is followed and evidenced in books and planning
- Grammar lessons are linked directly to the National Curriculum statements
- Core texts are used systematically
- Children have a range of extended writing opportunities
Each writing unit includes the text, writing outcomes and the grammar that is explicitly linked to the writing unit.