Skip to main content

Creative literacy workshop a success!

Hip hip hooray! The latest ARTiculate workshop running in school was a resounding success. The six Year 4 children made leaps and bounds forward in not only their creative techniques but also their attitude to writing. It was a pleasure to watch them explore deeper and deeper the mysterious island in Armin Greder's fantastic short story. They became absorbed in the roles of the islanders and the man, exploring their motivations, hopes and their fears.

All children made at least one sub-level progress during the workshop. One incredible girl (EAL, BME) made TWO sub-levels progress, from a 2C to a 2A in this time. An incredible achievement!

The outcome
The children produced a fantastic piece of writing. Going through the creative processes, they:

  • developed vocabulary banks
  • orally rehearsed their ideas
  • wrote an initial draft of their piece 
  • reshaped and edited their work
  • evaluated it against level-appropriate checklists
  • wrote their writing for presentation
Exploring artwork was also an integral factor in shaping our understand of the text. In this workshop, the children:
  • practised using pastels
  • mixed colours and studied the relationships between them
  • developed seascapes using mood-appropriate colours
  • drew themselves as an islander
  • understood how an author and illustrator work together 

See our gallery for more images of artwork and writing from this workshop!

Popular posts from this blog

Blood thirsty Macbeth posters

Macbeth
Creative writing workshop, KS2
Macbeth is a blood-drenched, gory and spooky tale. Too gruesome for little ones? Apparently not! The Year 4 and 5 children I have been working with this half term have become completely immersed in the Scottish play.  As well as getting the children to write short playscripts, developing the climactic showdown between Macbeth and Macduff (more on this at a later date), my groups have designed some concept posters for the play. The children chose a colour and symbol that represented some aspect of the play (bloody red, royal purple, a black cat for the witches, a chess piece for the king) and overlayed it with words that help tell the story. We used emulsion paint and big worn-out brushes (the ones at the back of the cupboard that nobody uses...) to achieve a battle-worn, scratchy effect. Gory blood splatters went down a treat too! Here are some fine examples!

ARTiculate newsletter: March 2018

Hello teachers!

Well this is embarrassing! 2018 is already three months old and this is my first newsletter. A combination of exciting creative work and house moving has stolen my time. But here is an update on everything ARTiculate and, as usual, resources and recommendations for you to use to add a creative spark to your literacy teaching!


Between the lines: a lesson in diversity from a bookshop in Cape Town
This month I am in South Africa’s most beautiful city: Cape Town. There are many issues in education here in South Africa, not least the massive disparity in opportunity and funding for children in many schools. After a visit to the fantastic bookshop The Book Lounge, I have been inspired by the interesting range of children’s literature on offer; crucially, it is literature representative of the diversity in the country.

A bit of a poke in the ribs for teachers like us in the UK: how much does the literature we use in our classrooms reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of th…

Jambo! Visit to Brookhouse School, Kenya

Our second week on our Kenya trip and an opportunity to visit the Karen campus of the Brookhouse School, Nairobi. And quite an experience it was too!

A private school, Brookhouse is regarded as one of the most prestigious schools in the country and it is hard to deny that the campus is stunning: a small farm with ostriches, secretary birds and guinea fowl, life size sculptures of safari animals in the playground, the library with the 'learning tree' that is also a staircase (and also the pride and joy of Jonathan, the school's librarian) and a computer lab that is decked out like a space station. These are facilities that most schools in Kenya - and, for that matter, the UK - can only dream of.

While this material investment may be out of reach for many schools, the schools commitment to creative learning is not.

Meeting the deputy headteacher and curriculum leader Andrew Kimwele and teacher Susan Bantu, it was interesting to hear the school's approach to creative, cr…