This teaching sequence has been designed to help children revisit and recall a key grammatical concept from the National Curriculum programme of study for Year 6.
The session provides a motivating and memorable image to stimulate discussion, before introducing the grammar element, which is ‘colons and semicolons’ (pt 2). Children have time to practise using this feature, before undertaking a short writing task to apply what they have learnt in the context of creative writing.
This primary resource includes:
- Trainee witch
Look at this picture of a trainee witch reading her spell book in one of the classrooms at witch school and see how many magical objects and spell ingredients you can spot
- Colons and semicolons grammar challenge
List the items you have spotted, beginning with a colon and each item demarcated with a semicolon
- writing challenge
Invent one spell from the trainee witch’s spell book and write a list of ingredients she will need for the spell. Remember to use a colon to introduce your list and semicolons to separate each item
- Teacher’s notes
What is a colon?
A punctuation mark that is typically used to introduce a list of items, a direct quotation or some form of explanation.
- Mrs Jones said: “This was not supposed to happen.”
- They talked about three things: the weather, what they’d had for lunch and how noisy it was.
- The pain was bad enough to make one thing clear: he’d really hurt himself.
What is a semicolon?
A punctuation mark that indicates a pause, typically between two closely related clauses, that is more pronounced a comma but less pronounced than a full stop.
- I had a huge meal; however, I am already hungry again.
- I saw a large bird; it was eating a worm.
- Let’s go to the library; there is a book I need to borrow.
- I know you don’t like muesli; nevertheless, it is healthier than sugary cereals.
National Curriculum English programme of study links
Pupils should be taught to indicate grammatical and other features by using semicolons, colons or dashes to mark boundaries between independent clauses [and] using a colon to introduce a list.