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Year 4 Model Text Resource Pack 16: ‘Marcus’s Misfortune’ (Narrative; History - the Romans in Britain)

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Real Writing Year 4 - Unit 16
Model text: Marcus’s Misfortune, by Ross Montgomery
Curriculum links: History (The Roman Empire and its Impact on Britain)

Writing unit overview

This writing unit for Year 4 is built around an original model text by Ross Montgomery; an engaging story set in Roman Britain which follows the structure of a defeating the monster story. 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 3-week unit, pupils will explore adding the prefixes auto-, super-, anti- and mis- to words and how they change the meaning of the root words. They will also learn how to punctuate direct speech and investigate how the reporting clause can be used to show meaning and actions. In their final writing task, pupils are asked to write their story set in Roman Britain, following the structure of the model text. This unit could be used within a history topic about Roman Britain.

Key curriculum skills

Two fully-resourced lessons are included for the following Year 4 English objectives, which can form part of the unit or be taught discretely:

1. Vocabulary: To add further prefixes to words: auto-, super-, anti-, mis-

Pupils will: add the correct prefixes to root words; write sentences with words containing the prefixes taught.

2. Grammar: To punctuate direct speech

Pupils will: proof-read sentences, adding punctuation needed for direct speech in KS2; rehearse sentences to explore how speech could be said, thinking about the reporting clause; write speech, punctuating this correctly

Additional skills to teach or revisit:

  • Showing singular possession using apostrophes
  • Use apostrophes for contracted words

Additional Year 4 curriculum teaching points

  • Modifying nouns to create expanded noun phrases
  • Using fronted adverbials
  • The use of nouns and pronouns to avoid repetition
  • Describing characters and settings

Year 4 vocabulary

Year 3 / 4 statutory spelling words: appear, caught, enough, favourite, guard, quarters, separate
Tier 2 words: antisocial, culprit, lure, lurk, misfortune, plummet, pompous, ransack, sodden, stalk, superstructure
Tier 3 words: barracks, Britannia, Caledonia, centurion, legion, outpost, tunic

What is direct speech?

Inverted commas, or speech marks, are used when writing direct speech. The inverted commas go around what is said within a sentence. Other speech punctuation is also needed. Punctuation is needed at the end of the direct speech before the inverted comma and a comma is used after the reporting clause if this comes before the direct speech.

  • “We are going on an adventure,” said Travis.
  • Travis said, “We are going on an adventure.”

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