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Come and tell me how you inspire writing...

(15 Posts)
SmileAndPeopleSmileWithYou Sat 29-Mar-14 19:40:40

I teach year 5 and I am searching for inspiring prompts for writing.

I have just done our descriptive poetry unit through the film Avatar, the children watched certain parts of the film that focused only on the scenery (the film is a 12 rating).
They loved it.

They also completed some fantastic writing after going on the ipad app Epic Citadel which lets you explore a deserted medieval world. They feel like they are playing a game.

I would love to know if you have any unusual ideas that will inspire children to produce amazing writing, instead of sticking to the usual stuff that seems to be regurgitated.

MrsKCastle Sat 29-Mar-14 20:20:03

I've used Avatar as well- the scenery is fab, isn't it? I love video clips. Picture books, which can be read in one session, but can be discussed for days, are great as well. Chris van Allsburg, David Wiesner, Sean Tan, Jeannie Baker spring to mind. Also poetry - 2 or 3 poems on a particular theme.

'Real' audiences are also vital imo. A letter which is actually sent to an author, a speech presented in assembly, or to the HT or school governor, an article for the school website. Why bother doing your best writing if only your teacher will ever read it? I also use my visualiser very often, both for providing an audience and for providing a model of high quality writing.

mrz Sat 29-Mar-14 20:57:52

Unusual /interesting objects can be a good stimulus for writing as can illustrations/photographs/paintings etc.

agree having an audience for your work is a great motivator and improves expression in reading

Feenie Sat 29-Mar-14 21:14:26

Agree with all posts so far and would add giving children real experiences - trips and visits, but obviously not using them to reproduce death by recount. smile

Real audiences are vital, I agree - Lend Me Your Literacy is great for this.

mrz Sat 29-Mar-14 21:15:47

We use the MakingWaves site

RueDeWakening Sat 29-Mar-14 21:23:53

DD's school put an unidentified object in the playground before the start of school, covered with a tarp with incident tape and cones all round it, nobody was allowed near it and it was there all day long but gone before they went back to school the next day. The whole school spent the day discussing what it might be, writing a news report about it, infants made a model of what they thought it was.

The ideas were very varied - from a satellite that had fallen to earth, to a half-melted snowman (not sure why that would need the tarp & tape though!) grin

Feenie Sat 29-Mar-14 21:28:22

Ooh, not seen that

luvmy3kids Sat 29-Mar-14 21:32:13

My school had the kids make picture poster - bring in photos from home of their family and then write about. It was really cute.

Parliamo Sat 29-Mar-14 21:34:49

Shoes? Create a character based on the shoes (takes them past facial descriptions)

A bag full of possessions could work the same way eg set of keys, an item of food, make up, diary, birthday card with cryptic message...

mrz Sat 29-Mar-14 21:39:54

I've used lunch boxes - who would eat this for lunch?
Letters from characters in books

MrsKCastle Sat 29-Mar-14 21:48:22

When studying WWII an old battered suitcase, complete with teddy bear etc. Kicks off evacuation stories nicely.

A mysterious parcel arrives from a museum, complete with 'fragile' 'this way up' 'open with care' stickers.

Google image searches are great as well- images of secret doors, or mythical creatures for instance.

FanFuckingTastic Sat 29-Mar-14 21:51:22

The thing that has always inspired me is a seriously good book. I loved literature essays or writing in a certain authors canon, and I found words seriously inspirational. I guess it depends on the type of learning the each child works best with.

teafor1 Sat 29-Mar-14 21:52:02

These are all great ideas, I wish I had you all as teachers when I was a kid! I am/was a terrible writer. Coming up with ideas is tough. My son told me today he can't think of what to write when at school. I told him he has some really great ideas when he is playing and to try think like that when he is going to write something.

SmileAndPeopleSmileWithYou Sat 29-Mar-14 22:38:05

I love all these, it helps to discuss it and take a different point of view sometimes.
I really like the shoes or possessions, I'm going to use that.

We're organising a writing week where an unidentified creature has got into school. A bit like the object under the tarp idea. We intend to trash a couple of classrooms smile how fun!

mrz Sun 30-Mar-14 07:54:09

We printed dragon footprints from the art area where the creature had knocked over the paint through the room and up a corridor before exiting into the playground SAPSWY

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