At Exning Primary School, we teach writing using a variety of strategies to inspire children's work. We take many principles from the Talk for Writing philosophy, as laid out by Pie Corbett, but combine these with techniques and ideas from the Power of Reading philosophy. We also use Jane Considine's The Write Stuff for our longer pieces of fiction writing across the school, which focuses on vocabulary and  the use of textual convention. Children use drama and text-interrogation techniques, as well as spending time unpicking the technical features of the text type and investigating language and structure. With all of these tools and techniques at their disposal, children are able to use high-level, quality literacy texts to inspire high quality writing.

Children are encouraged to edit their work by "Purple Polishing" and redrafting, using a range of tools to support them in their work. We use a range of peer, teacher and self-marking where children use structured marking ladders and success to assess their work.

Assessment is both formative and summative, with children being given a combination of written and verbal feedback to inform their improvements and next steps. Teachers will assess children's writing against the objectives of the National Curriculum and use these to inform their planning for each written topic.


Spelling and Grammar


Spelling is taught discretely throughout the whole school, using resources from EdShed's Spelling Shed. Please see long term plans for details of which specific spelling patterns and rules are taught in each phase.

Word lists, games and practise ideas are sent home with children to complete at home and are linked to the word-types, patterns and rules that they have been learning that week. Some children need additional support with spelling and they work in intervention groups to fill gaps, many caused by COVID interruptions. Children may also engage in specific literacy interventions (e.g. Morph Mastery) if phonetic approaches to spelling have not worked for them. 


In Key Stage 2 (Years 3-6), we teach whole-class Grammar sessions in-line with the National Curriculum. Please see long-term plans for exact coverage of each phase.

Grammar will be taught discretely a minimum of 3 times per week and will be revisited during Do It Now tasks and Talk Tasks at the beginning of lessons. Some English lessons will have a grammar focus when teaching writing skills, particularly when looking at advanced punctuation, which impacts on the meaning of sentences. Children in year 6 will revise concepts from all previous year groups, as well as learning new grammar and punctuation as specified by the National Curriculum. Children will have a termly grammar assessment, which will allow teachers to focus their teaching sequences on the needs of each specific class.