Real Writing Year 6, Unit 2
The Workings of the Human Heart, by Anita Loughrey
Curriculum links: Science (The Human Circulatory System)
Writing unit overview
This writing unit for Year 6 is built around an original model text by Anita Loughrey - an explanatory text about the human heart. The example text is available as a PDF in three versions (plain, illustrated and annotated); annotated and non-annotated PowerPoint presentations are also included.
In this two-week unit, pupils will read an explanation text about the heart and learn about how it works as part of the circulatory system. They will look closely at the features of an explanation text, including organisational devices such as headings and diagrams, and how to punctuate bullet pointed lists. At the end of the unit, pupils will have the opportunity to write their own explanation based on their learning in science.
Key curriculum skills
Two fully-resourced lessons are included for the following Year 3 English objectives, which can form part of the unit or be taught discretely:
1. Vocabulary: To use organisational devices – headings and diagrams
Pupils will: revisit how headings and diagrams are used in explanation texts; pair information cards with appropriate headings; create a labelled diagram explaining how materials can change from solids to liquids and gases, and vice versa.
2. Grammar: To punctuate bullet points to list information
Pupils will: revisit punctuating simple lists with commas; understand how bullet points can clarify information; learn how to punctuate bullet pointed lists; correct incorrectly punctuated lists; rewrite a list with bullet points; write bullet pointed information about solids, liquids and gases.
Additional objectives to teach or revisit:
- using parenthesis
- devices that create cohesion including pronouns, prepositions, conjunctions and adverbials
Additional year 6 curriculum teaching points
Year 6 vocabulary
Year 5/6 statutory spelling words: muscle, rhythm, system
Tier two words: contract, dispose of, function
Tier three words: artery, atrium, blood vessel, carbon dioxide, cardiac, circulatory, oxygen, pulse, valve, vein, ventricle
What is an explanation text?
An explanation text explains how or why processes occur or why something is the way it is. Explanatory texts includes information about causes, motives or reasons rather than simply giving a description of what happens (this would be a report).
Examples of explanation texts include explanations of processes in science, explaining how something works (such as an invention), explaining phenomenon such as volcanic eruptions, or the water cycle or question and answer style articles.