Learning writing strategies

Mark Torrance and Raquel Fidalgo explain how to provide late-primary pupils with strategies to guide their writing

CHILDREN’S FIRST AND DEFAULT MODE OF communication is speaking – their audience is present and can provide an immediate indication as to whether they are making sense, as well as prompts that help them decide what to say next. In written communication this external feedback is absent. Becoming a skilled writer therefore requires more than just proficiency in spelling and handwriting. Beginning writers also need strategies for generating ideas, and for transforming these ideas into effective written communication. They need to cease to rely on the external regulation provided by an immediate audience, and instead develop their own ways of regulating what they say and how they say it.

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February 2011