Each day I sit and do some research on how to teach English. I am a member of a few websites where teachers post and discuss current issues so I can keep up with current trends in schools. Slow writing is often mentioned, what is it?
Phew! I already use “slow writing” (or a similar technique) and have for many years. It’s a very sensible support for reluctant writers. Slow writing is when you specifically tell a child what you want to see in their creative writing.
For example, this illustrates how slow writing can be used in KS2:
- Your first sentence must starting with an ing
- Your second sentence must contain only three words.
- Your third sentence must contain a semi-colon
- Your fourth sentence must be a rhetorical question
- Your fifth sentence will start with an adverb
My format tends to be something like this:
Colour: use 2 sentences
Tension: use 2 sentences
Rasping, Grasping, Eventually
Suddenly, Terrified, Panicking
? question mark
! exclamation mark
“ “ speech marks
Use 2 lots of level 3:
( ) brackets
: colon and ; semi colon
– Dash or hyphen
This template was made for a story I teach called the Citadel (available from Exam papers Plus https://exampapersplus.co.uk/papers/eleven-plus/the-complete-guide-to-11-plus-writing/.)
When teaching children creative writing they need to be “tethered “ to good writing practice and this is a great way of doing it – and it changes habits!
Does slow writing work? Yes- I think it can make a big difference. Some children freeze at the thought of creative writing – or write very bland stories. Slow writing (as the name suggests) slows down the thought process and writing – it tells a child WHAT and HOW to write. If this can become a habit, then it makes the writing process much more enjoyable and the writing is improved. I have to say I’m a big fan of slow writing.