"Stefan completely revolutionised my teaching of writing - not an understatement!"
Sarah, Deputy Head & Literacy Leader, Leeds

"I believe I have seen a genuine correlation between children involved in the ARTiculate workshops and target children making Age Related Expectation (ARE)...Every child benefited with progress, clearly evident in their school books."
Simon, Y4 Teacher, Leeds

"Very inspirational and creative - lots of new ideas to improve writing and unlock children's imaginations."
Nadia, Year 4 teacher

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

ARTiculate Bulletin wc 14.3.16 Have you tried Bambert's Book of Missing Stories?

Buy this book!
Image copyright by the owners.
ARTiculate Bulletin wc.14.3.16
Bambert's Book of Missing Stories

This story is not just a book of writing. It is a book about writing. Bambert lives a lonely, detached life with only Mr Bloom the greengrocer and the characters in his stories – The Book of Wishes - for company. Not convinced he knows enough of the world to make his writing believable, he sets his stories free on paper lanterns to find the characters and settings they deserve.

In brief: Have you tried? 
Ideas for talking and thinking: How do writers write? That is the question and this book gives you the starting point for a discussion about where ideas come from.

Ideas for writing: Collaborate as a class or with another school on creative story writing.

Ideas for art: Give your stories wings by building paper lanterns.      

If you try any of the ideas I'd love to see the work your children produce!

'Have You Tried?' ideas sheet for Macbeth can be found here

To request this in pdf format, please join the mailing list by clicking here and sending me a blank email with your full name and the word subscribe.




A galaxy far, far away... EPISODE IV

Turn your most wayward apprentices from scruffy-lookin’ nerf herders into Jedi Masters with this creative writing and illustration workshop.
Creative writing workshop -- six sessions -- fiction

*all spellings are the children's originals!

Before they were to start writing their drafts, I set the group some short writing tasks: one short piece describing the setting and two pieces to describe the main characters that appeared in their story. We watched the first twenty minutes of Episode VI and discussed the different features of the settings. What would it be like to be in the desert of Tatooine? What would you see there? What would the Death Star be like? What could you hear, smell, see? I wrote a short description as an example which included some model sentences. The children analysed it and then used it to help structure their own
descriptions. Here is one example for a story set in a junkyard....

This fiery place, full of destruction, was a swollen junkyard. The dusty land was covered with broken machinery. The sand dunes in the distance were high and it was scorching under the two suns. This was a place of battle.
Wizzing across the surface of the planet was the most brave and loyal hero in the whole universe: Luke Skywalker.

By Mohsen

We set this aside and followed it up with two character descriptions. Again, I wrote a model text to set the expectation and the children used it to write their own. This is where the vocabulary profile posters became valuable. The words were already there for the children to use leaving them to focus on the sentence structure, including getting to grips with a semi-colon! Here are two examples, one for Darth Vader and the other for bounty hunter, Boba Fett.

Standing in the middle of Jabba’s repulsive palace, with his straight faced Stormtroopers behind him, was the most grim, forbidding villain of the entire universe: Darth Vader. The abominable sith lord looked like an obsidian shadow. His monstrous black military armour hid his unforgettable wrinkly face; he is more machine than man. He holds his luminous lightsaber carefully in his metal hand. All who see him fall to there knees and beg for mercy. 
By Aman

Legendary and cunning, he started like as a clone but now he is one of a kind. His armour was strong and green; his wrist rocket and flame thrower are deadly. One shot is enough to blast you to pieces. He is not to be messed with for money.
By Nayshawn 

Now, although their descriptions were energetic and full-blooded,  I am really not suggesting this was easy! The children were eager to get started on writing the juicy action they had read in the graphic novels and they were a little frustrated with taking a step-by-step approach. “When are we going to write the stories!?” they demanded. “You’re already writing it, kid,” I wish Harrison Ford had been on hand to reply. But taking it slowly would pay it’s reward later on!

Next time... Drafting a story stars in EPISODE V: THE HIGHLIGHTERS STRIKE BACK