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Inspiration for Teachers

In the programme, participating teachers shared their own narratives and evaluations of how they were able to use creative activities in the classroom to promote children’s writing.

Here we present a selection of these narratives, to inspire other teachers to use arts and culture in their own writing lessons.

Inspirations can be searched for or filtered by Key Stage, Artform, Writing Output or a combination of any of these. 

  • Art Form

  • Key Stage

  • Writing Output

Dance

Akram Khan Dance

Children watched Akram Khan’s opening ceremony piece from London 2012. They watched the dance twice and wrote words and ideas on large sugar paper. Children then circled all the words they had written which demonstrated emotional attachment to the dance they had seen and mapped an emotion arc. They then

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Dance

Dancing a Marathon!

Working with the topic ‘Anything is Possible’ and looking at Olympians in upper KS2 the teacher decided to use the marathon as a stimulus, to fit with wider themes of perseverance and determination. The teacher worked with the children on the qualities required by marathon runners and showed children a

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Visual Arts

Drawing mythical creatures

Children were asked to work with partners to creatively draw a mythical creature of their choice. The outcome of these sketches was inspiring and the children had used their previous knowledge of mythical characters to design their character well. Using art allowed the children to express their own thoughts well and allowed the

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Music

Exploring the Solar System with music

Children in a Year One class were learning about Explorers so a two-week unit of story writing using the Planets Music by Gustav Holst was planned.   The children were amazed by the music at the start of the unit and listened to it lots of times so that they had the opportunity to share their ideas. The week

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Drama

George’s Marvellous Medicine

As a class we read George’s Marvellous Medicine and focussed on the description of the items in his recipe. We then sat in a circle in the hall and each child wrote an item they would like to add to the pot/cauldron on a post-it note. As the children placed

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Visual Arts

In an English Country Garden

In this work, the teacher wanted to link visual arts with geography, in a way that also connected to the overall class theme of ‘An English Country Garden’. Children created their own ‘secret garden’ map using ‘The Secret Garden’ by Frances Hodgson Burnett as a model text for the children to take

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Drama

Night in the Museum

We started the activity with a tray of sand in the centre of the room and the children excavated bones, feathers and items belonging to an animal that is now extinct.  As a group they imagined and drew the creature as it may have looked and the traits of that

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Film

Snippets and Shots

Children heard three snippets of sound and guessed what the sounds could be. This was done through drawing, key words and sentences. Then children were shown a short film clip and asked to imagine details about the characters. Discussions about camera angles with focus on long shots and close ups

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Film

Storytelling through short film

As the topic was Africa the film Zahra – which has no speech – was chosen. In the first lesson, the teacher played the whole film with just music and did not show them the screen. Once children had listened to the sounds twice they had to draw what they thought they could hear.

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Music

Tim Peake’s Journey

As part of our science topic, we were looking at the journey of Tim Peake from Earth to space.  As a class we mapped the journey thinking about minute detail that Tim would go through on the day of the space launch. Next, we wrote details and words for stages

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