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Year 1 Model Text Resource Pack 7: ‘Dear Father Christmas…’ (Letter (informal); Christmas)

image of Year 1 Model Text Resource Pack 7: ‘Dear Father Christmas…’ (Letter (informal); Christmas)
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Real Writing
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Real Writing Year 1 - Unit 7
Model text: Dear Father Christmas…, by Mike Davies
Curriculum links: Christmas

Writing Unit overview

This writing unit for Year 1 is built around an original model text by Mike Davies - a letter from a child to Father Christmas. 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 use the planning sheet to organise and compose their own simple letters to Father Christmas using simple conventions of letter writing (greeting and close) and the letter writing templates provided.

Key curriculum skills

Three fully-resourced lessons are included for the following Year 1 English objectives, which can form part of the unit or be taught discretely:

1. Vocabulary: to use the spelling rule for adding -s or -es to plural nouns

Pupils will: learn how to form plural nouns by adding -s or -es to singular nouns.

2. Punctuation: to use a capital letter for the personal pronoun I

Pupils will: practise forming the letter I before identifying where the capital I is needed for personal pronouns.

3. Punctuation: to begin to punctuate sentences using capital letters and full stops

Pupils will: compose sentences orally and begin to punctuate these using capital letters and full stops.

Additional teaching points to teach or revisit:

  • saying out loud what they are going to write about
  • composing sentences orally before writing
  • beginning to leave spaces between words
  • reading aloud their own writing

Year 1 words: featured vocabulary

Year 1 Common exception words: love I you to ask put are be my some the one once do of she
Tier 2 words: wrap, dear, joy, gift
Tier 3 words: Father Christmas

What is a plural noun?

A plural noun has the suffix -s or -es added and means there is more than one of the object. Some plural nouns do not follow this rule, for example mice. When there is only one item, this is singular.

I have eaten a cake.

The noun cake is singular (only one cake).

I have eaten all the cakes.

The noun cakes is plural (more than one cake).

When nouns end in x, sh, s, ss, ch, tch or z, the suffix -es is added and creates an extra syllable (or beat) to the word.

We opened the box.

The noun box is singular (only one box).

We opened the boxes.

The noun boxes is plural (more than one box).

What is a personal pronoun?

A personal pronoun is used when writing about people who are known. I, me, my, you, he, she, we and us are all examples of personal pronouns (taught in Year 4).

In Year 1, pupils need to learn how to write the personal pronoun I when writing in the first person, learning that this should always be a capital letter.

When are capital letters used?

Capital letters are punctuation marks used in sentences to make meaning clear. These letters are used at the beginning of sentences, for proper nouns, days of the week and months of the year. They are also used in abbreviations (for example RSPCA) and acronyms (for example AWOL).

When are full stops used?

Full stops punctuate the end of a sentence to show that it is complete.

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