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Primary English - How We Teach

The blog that's packed with advice, tips and inspiration for improving literacy across the curriculum (tell your colleagues!)

WAGOLL – Teaching what a good one looks like with KS1 and KS2 example texts

Use great exemplification with model texts to improve children's writing skills...

Books for topics

With around 10,000 new children's titles published every year, how can teachers choose the best for their classroom?


Ensure children's writing holds firm by building a deep understanding of how ideas can be joined together

Storyboard templates

Discover how this simple planning technique can help children with inspiration, sequencing and more...

Spelling words

Try these smart spelling strategies to boost children's skills and confidence, every time they write

Non-chronological reports

Support children as they get their facts straight, with this guide to presenting information clearly and accurately

Creative writing ideas

Inspire sophisticated stories with these cross-curricular ideas to get children's imaginations active...

The Ofsted Deep Dive: Writing

Make sure you are fully prepared to show your best side, should the inspectors decide to investigate writing in your school...


The ability to use speech clearly and with confidence is crucial for successful literacy outcomes

The Ofsted Deep Dive: Reading

Waiting for 'the call'? Make sure you're ready to demonstrate intent, implementation and impact for your school's reading curriculum

KS2 Poetry

From limericks to sonnets and everything in between - poetry has so much to offer for primary classrooms...

Emotive language

Support children towards greater depth writing by teaching the responsible use of powerful language

Diary writing

Revisit the features required for an effective first person recount

Word classes

Brush up your subject knowledge with this comprehensive guide to vocabulary categories

Setting descriptions

Use these strategies to give children the tools they need to create powerful settings for their stories

Explanation Texts

Teach children the key features and conventions of an important - but potentially tricky - writing genre

Story Sacks

Try this simple and effective strategy for helping children write more powerful stories

Teaching phonics

Suddenly found yourself in Year 1? This back-to-basic guide will help you support pupils in their first reading steps...

Poetic Techniques

Try these tips for teaching children to spot rhetorical devices in others' work - and use them in their own

Story Mountains

Careful story planning doesn't mean children have to squash their creativity - quite the opposite, in fact...

Handwriting Resources

Well-formed, clear handwriting doesn't just look good - it's an indicator of improved outcomes, well beyond the end of KS2...

World Book Day Ideas

Celebrate World Book Day, the annual event championing reading for pleasure, with these easy, no-stress activity ideas and resources...

Greater Depth

Follow this advice to make sure you are encouraging every pupil to produce their very best writing possible

KS1 Teacher Assessment Framework

Sound advice to make sure the TAF is working for you and your pupils - as well as those pesky Powers That Be...

KS2 conjunctions

Using a sophisticated range of sentence structures is an important element of greater depth writing

7 ways to get children reading

Few things have a more positive impact on children's outcomes than how often they read for pleasure - so here's how to encourage it...

Formal letter writing

Pupils may be more used to pinging a DM than penning a missive - but they still need the skills required for the latter...

Tricky words

Nine simple strategies to support pupils in mastering CEWs, SSWs and other non-standard spelling challenges!

Lesson plan templates

Take the stress out of planning with tips and resources to make life easier...

Tarsia puzzles

Explore how a simple game can help children make leaps of literacy progress...

Shakespeare for KS2

Can primary school children really make sense of the Bard? Absolutely...

Spelling strategies

Give every pupil the skills they need to become a master speller, from day one!

KS2 reading comprehension

Bring every child up to speed with the key skills they need to get the most out of any text

Working walls

With a little time and a healthy dash of creativity, your classroom walls can become invaluable learning tools...

Effective story starters

Make sure children can grab readers' attention from the start, with these powerful strategies...

Spelling games

Just follow these tips and 'Bingo!' - learning is fun once again...

KS2 imagery

Draw on your pupils' imaginations to help them paint a picture with their words

Sentence starters

Open the door to more fluent writing from your pupils

Persuasive writing

Can you afford to miss out? Read on to discover the best tips ever, absolutely free!

Adverbial phrases: top tips for teaching with confidence and creativity

Help children move towards greater depth, with this guide to understanding and teaching a key cohesive device

Grammar games – SPaG activities for KS2

Children learn best when they're really enjoying what they're doing – and that includes learning about conjunctions and fronted...

KS2 prepositions

Grammar teaching tips that will take year 3 pupils FROM confusion TO confidence in nine easy steps

Year 6 reading comprehension: building confidence for SATs and beyond

Ensure success in those end of KS2 assessments, with resources and strategies for better text analysis

KS2 Determiners: definitions, teaching advice and essential resources

Help pupils in Year 4 and onwards to identify, use and understand the different ways we can modify a noun...

Character description: tips and resources for bringing characters to life

Successful writers know how to create convincing and memorable characters - and here's how they do it...

Word families: advice and worksheets for teaching root words in KS2

Improve comprehension skills and develop more sophisticated writing by exploring etymology with your pupils...

The past tense: KS1 verbs to revisit now and then

A secure understanding of how to use different tenses is essential if children are to make good progress in writing

Personification – Making KS2 writing come to life

Help children write at greater depth, with language choices that really grab readers' attention

Writing newspaper reports in KS2: read all about it!

As non-fiction text types go, news articles provide opportunities to develop a whole range of key writing skills

Teaching onomatopoeia – make your English language lessons go with a bang

It's a tough word to spell – but a hugely useful rhetorical device for the greater depth writing toolkit in KS1 and KS2

WAGOLL: What good exemplification looks like

Great model texts, clear success criteria and plenty of aspiration will all help children produce their best work

The subjunctive: Y6 worksheets and resources to make it clear

If you were hoping to improve your teaching, understanding this often perplexing verb mood would be a great place to start...

FANBOYS: how to teach coordinating conjunctions in KS2

Understanding what makes a good compound sentence is an essential skill to help young writers make progress

Subordinating conjunctions – Making complex sentences simple

It’s a term children first meet in Year 2 – and understanding it will take their writing to the next level...

Common exception words: making them stick in Years 1 and 2

Tricky words are often the most useful for children's reading and writing - so here's how to make them memorable

Bossy verbs: how to teach the imperative from Year 2 onwards

Help children get to grips with sentence types, with these top tips for identifying and using commands

Introducing apostrophes in Year 2: tips to help children remember

Teach possession and contraction well from the start, and you could prevent a lifetime of confusion for your pupils...

Ambitious vocabulary: the pros and cons of ‘wow’ words

Encourage children to add sophisticated shimmer to their writing, with truly thoughtful and creative vocabulary choices

Homophones – Top tips for improving your/you’re teaching

End children’s confusion over words that sound the same but have a different meaning, with these clever strategies for Years 2-6

Inverted commas: getting speech punctuation right at KS2

Perfectly punctuating dialogue is something that can trip up even experienced editors - but this quick guide should help pupils get it...

Letter writing in KS1 and KS2 – 9 tips for delivering great lessons

No matter how convenient it is to tap out a text, the epistolary art is still a valuable skill for children to learn to improve writing...

Teaching alliteration – Top tips and pitiful pitfalls

Adding rhetorical flourishes will help children achieve greater depth writing – but only if they know why they’re doing it...

Year 5 relative clauses – 9 useful tips that promote confident teaching

Use these smart strategies to turn a challenging grammar topic into something that’s, well, relatively simple!

KS2 similes and metaphors – 9 ways to teach with confidence

The effective use of descriptive language is key for greater depth writing – so here's how to help pupils bring their ideas to life with...

Year 4 fronted adverbials – 8 teaching tips to make it easy

It’s a notoriously (and perhaps surprisingly) challenging topic – but it's time to take the fear out of teaching fronted adverbials...

KS2 modal verbs – 9 teaching tips you may/might/will want to follow

By the end of Year 5, children need to be able to identify and use modal verbs - but can you?

5 tips for stress-free homeschooling

Just a few small changes to the daily routine can really help keep children engaged whilst learning at home, suggests Charlotte Gater...

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