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Elmhurst School

An Academy of the Great Learners Trust


"Writing makes me feel complete, it is a door to your wildest dreams, writing is an opportunity to express your feelings and show your true colours of what you can do." - Year 4 Child

Curriculum Intent

Writing is an essential life skill.  We want our children to aspire to become authors, columnists, bloggers, reporters and screenwriters as well as being able to enjoy the skill of writing as a way to express ourselves and communicate with the world around us.  We want our children to think, be thoughtful and to have an informed opinion about what they read and experience and are able to respond to this.   


We unlock our pupils' writing potential through by inspiring them with high-quality, aspirational texts.  Through the Talk for Writing process we provide our pupils with the tools they need to become creative authors.  We are continuously developing their writing skills whilst instilling a love of reading and writing.


We are preparing children to be successful communicators and writers so they can achieve their aspirations throughout their education and beyond.

Curriculum Implementation

At Elmhurst School we teach writing through the Talk for Writing approach. Talk for Writing is powerful because it enables children to imitate the language they need orally before reading, analysing, innovating and then writing independently.  ​


​‘Talk for Writing’ was developed by the author Pie Corbett.  It is a fun, creative, yet rigorous approach to develop writers.​

There are 3 stages to the Talk for Writing approach:



A text is introduced and read to the children; together the class learn to tell the story. To help the children remember the text a multi-sensory approach is used:

  • A visual story map

  • Actions

  • A focus on lively, animated expression


As children learn the stories word for word, they develop the use of specific sentence structures, which they can then use in their own writing.  The principle is that if a child can tell a story, they will be able to write it.



In this stage the original text is adapted with the children using shared writing.  This could start with a simple change of character or for the older children it may involve telling the story from a different viewpoint.  Children can make changes to their story map and rehearse retelling their innovated story orally.  Following shared writing, children then write the innovated story in manageable sections working in guided groups with the teacher or LSA at least once in the week.  Pupils then receive feedback and have an opportunity to respond to this before writing the next section.  It is a very supportive and structured approach to allow children to gain confidence and know what they need to do to improve.


Independent Application

This is the final stage where the children use all the skills they have learnt to write an independent piece.  There is the freedom to draw upon their own ideas and experiences, or they can ‘hug closely’ to the shared text should they need to. 

If you would like further information on our writing curriculum or how to help your child at home then please get in contact with our Writing Leader, Miss Mel Harper on 01296 481380 or

Page last updated: 13/07/23