At Waterloo Primary Academy, we believe that if our children can’t ‘talk it’, then they can’t ‘write it’. We therefore teach our children to write through Talk for Writing, supported by ‘short burst’ writing activities.
What is Talk for Writing?
Talk for Writing is an engaging teaching framework developed by Pie Corbett and Julia Strong. It is a powerful, whole-school cumulative approach to the teaching of writing, based on the principles of how children learn. It enables children to imitate the language they need for a particular topic orally, before reading and analysing it, and then writing their own version.
The movement from imitation to innovation to independent application can be adapted to suit the needs of learners of any stage, so it is a completely inclusive approach to writing. We begin Talk for Writing in our Nursery. The teaching in each year group builds upon prior learning and lays the foundations for the year to come.
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. A key feature of our classrooms are the ‘washing lines’ on which the teachers display the shared writing which builds throughout the teaching phase.
This approach to writing is extremely popular with the children. It has not only increased attainment in writing, but also enjoyment and engagement.
If you’d like to know more about our approach, click the link to hear Pie Corbett sharing about Talk for Writing.