Words worthy

4th May 2001 at 01:00
I have proof that the literacy strategy really does raise standards if the objectives and format are approached rigorously.

Last September, one Year 6 boy, who always came unwillingly to school, and had a rather unusual home life, wrote: "I went out and I saw some flowers. It was windy. It was near a lake."

Eight months later, after intensive teaching, he wrote the following Level 5 poem. I have listed the work we have covered which empowered the lad to do this.

"I wandered (powerful verbs) lonely as a cloud (peronification and similes) That floats on high o'er (use of archaic language) vales and hills (noun opposites), When all at once I saw (extended sentences) a crowd, A host, (synonyms) of golden daffodils (adjectives); Beside the lake, beneath the trees (prepositions), Fluttering and dancing in the breeze (rhyme)."

Is it not amazing what these children can write in 20 minutes? Tomorrow I teach adverbs so I expect him to add examples to his poem and improve it further.

Jenny Smith 22 Dringthorpe Road York


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