Creative Writing - Vocabulary and language activities

Creative Writing

Slow writing

Slow writing is a great way to progress the skills of:

  • writing;
  • punctuation;
  • writing meta-cognition; and
  • self-assessment.

You can use slow writing in many formats. The Fight - A planning sheet resource uses a fight between a spider and a mantis as the stimulus to cover a range of slow writing opportunities. The stimulus video is called Kung Fu Mantis Vs Jumping Spider - Life Story by the BBC.

You can use a series of images or a short video as the stimulus for a modelled or shared writing session, where you prepare the writing prompts, then ask the class to think of examples.

Stimuli for Slow Writing

Nature programmes provide short, dramatic clips that can give your pupils effective stimulus material to practise slow writing strategies. Images from wild life programmes can be very effective as starting points for descriptive writing and character development.  For example, the BBC clip Sengi racetrack (elephant shrew) lives life in the fast lane.

Classroom Activity

Slow motion is used very effectively to create drama. This idea is useful for creating setting. In this clip from the BBC, called Drip drip drip, we are transfixed by the fate of a rodent stuck in a rainstorm. Use this clip with your pupils to explore the effectiveness of slowing things down. Then, ask your pupils to write up the clip, in pairs, using the slow writing tool. You can also use it to look at perspective.

Classroom Activity

Ask your pupils to watch the clips with or without audio. You could assign different characters to different pupils. For example, in this clip called Meals on wheels, ask your pupils to take on the role of the cat, the owl, the insect, the agouti and the marmoset, who watches it all.

Classroom Activity

This clip called David and Goliath shows a battle between a rhinoceros beetle and a crow.  Ask your pupils to write their own commentaries for the clip, from a first person perspective, rather than David Attenborough’s third person narrative. Try a similar approach with this clip called the Chipmunk duel.