Planning a knowledge-based scheme of work. Part 2: Writing

Robert Peal

“The amount and quality of writing students do in your classroom are two of the most important determinants of their academic success.… By having students write more, we cause them to push their ideas from vague notion (developing idea) to complete thought.”

Doug Lemov

Over the summer holidays, I read Chapter 8 of Doug Lemov’s Teach Like A Champion – ‘Building ratio through writing’. It was a revelation. Coming back to the classroom after a year away, I knew that the aspect of my practice I most wanted to improve was pupils’ extended writing.

I teach history, so pupils had always written a lot during my lessons. But the writing tasks tended to be a bit of an afterthought, and were too varied and ill thought through. A historical explanation here, a bit of source analysis there, maybe a ‘historical empathy’ task to mix things up: ‘Imagine you were an Anglo-Saxon…

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