Archive | September, 2012

Writing Observation

19 Sep

Diary Sheet when Visiting & Observing other Classrooms


Date: 19th September 2012                                            Term: 3                                                 Classroom:  Room O                          Observer: Alicia Kyle

What learning is going to happen during the visit: – Discussed prior to visit

A shared writing lesson with a focus of narrative writing.

Already completed a shared writing narrative plan and children have started to write their own pieces of writing from this guided lesson. This lesson is refocusing their attention to specific areas in their narrative writing e.g. the initial event and then to the problem.



Description of practice



Future Steps


19th Sept





Geoffrey started with the digital teaching station. He displayed the W.A.L.T and the success criteria to the children using this.


–          Develop characteristics of main characters.

–          Develop an initial event (lead to problem)

–          Develop a problem.

Children are told what the focus of the lesson is and what need to achieve.

Children go into buddies. Geoffrey used one of the children to show the class what they needed to do.

On teaching station Geoffrey shared a picture. The image showed a princess on it. The child and the teacher each said one word each to describe this character. This character was the VICTIM.

Words were said, such as, innocent, lovely, beautiful etc.

The children really enjoyed this part and had a lot of fun. I heard them discussing a lot of characteristics with their buddies.

The children, with their buddies, then had to do a similar thing by describing their own main character, from their narrative, using singular words.

Discussion on the mat. Geoffrey said “did your buddy get a good picture of your character?”

Another picture was then put up on the teaching station, this time the VILLIAN was displayed.

Children discussed this character (a witch).

Geoffrey said and referred to the children that it was NOT ONLY looks, but the personality of the witch that needed to be discussed.

The next image was a HERO and similar discussion was held on the mat.

Geoffrey gave the children a good time frame to discuss with their buddies and he roamed as the children discussed.

Geoffrey then gave the children a small quiz to see how much they had remembered about the layout of a narrative.

Showed the main features in white font and when children guessed it showed it in black.

Main parts of a narrative discussed:

Orientation/ initial event/ problem/ turning point/ resolution.

Game with the children, having to match 2 parts of stories together from narratives Geoffrey had read to the children over the last few weeks.

The class discussed each part and why they selected the certain match.

Children got to how if they agreed with the persons matching by raising their hand.

On teaching station Geoffrey brought up the narrative class planning sheet from previous lesson. Children had time to look through and read it so they could have an idea of how to write their initial event.

Ran out of time so Geoffrey took over and completed the initial event and not with the children. (Started with their input though but they started going silly- he redirected them to the lesson).

Children listened and waited quietly on mat while Geoffrey typed on teaching station.

Wrote the initial event- explained that it lead to the problem.

Asked the children how many sentences it was? 7-12 they came up with.

Children went away and then added to their pieces of writing the initial event. They may have added to their orientation and what they had already written.

Geoffrey roamed and discussed to most of the children about their writing and what needed to be done.

Geoffrey checks a lot of children’s work and books.

I had to leave early due to time but this was what was expected to carry on with once I left:

Come back on mat. Do the problem as a class, Geoffrey models with the children. The children then go away and write their problem independently. The children write for 10 minutes. They then come onto the mat and discuss what they have all written and then recap over the success criteria and whether they have achieved it or not.









Such a great tool to use, the digital teaching station, and so all children can see what is being focused on and have it clearly seen on a large screen.



Buddies were a great idea and got children engaged in discussion with one another.



Effective and fun to see teacher modelling task for children.









Discussed about their own story- drew their attention back to their own piece of writing and how they have ‘made’ up and described their own character.







VILLIAN was another aspect to think about.







HERO was another aspect to think about.








The quiz was a great way to get children thinking about previous lesson and challenges them. 


Really easy, but effective tool to use.




Went over previous lesson and main features.


The children really enjoyed this and did well.




This kept all children involved and making sure they were on task and thinking while one individual answered.




Good idea to refresh the children’s ideas back to previous lesson.



Ran out of time on this. I think he did well to go and do it to get things moving faster.





Showed the great respect they had for Geoffrey while he focused on work.

Clearly stated the purpose of it.

This allowed the children to know how many sentences they were expected to write.

Went back to desks quietly and focused on the task.


He made sure children were on task, helped others who were behind or struggling.








Great use of the teaching station. Very clear for the children to see and know what the expectations of the lesson are.


Buddies allowed the children to have someone to discuss and build ideas with.



The modelling was an effective and fun way for the children to understand what the expectations for the task were.







The children enjoyed discussing their own stories and allowing them to link back to their own stories redirected their thinking back to their own narratives.




More great discussion was coming from these images on the teaching station.













Fun quiz to discuss serious and important ideas. Children enjoyed this.

I liked how you used the white font and then changed it to black when children discovered what the main features were.

Children got to understand what was expected of a narrative- revisit previous lesson ideas. 

Great idea of matching parts of certain narratives. Showed the children the link between stories.


I liked that you asked the children to show their agreement with hands up. They had to be on task and listen to the speaker.

Previous plan looked really good.




I think what you did to redirect the children and with time issues was really good. You just got on with the lessonJ.

Showed the respect and your quiet nature and how well the children respected you.

Children knew the purpose of what the initial event was for and why.

Children knew how many sentences to write and what had to be done.

Children were so focused at their desks independently writing. They knew what to do.

You helped all children to complete the task and to correctly write a narrative.















































































The font was VERY small and hard to read, I could see the children struggling to see what the words were on the teaching station. Next time use a bigger font.


























Font size was the only let down. Too hard to read.















Next steps/ to think about:


  1. Length of lesson. It went very long on the mat. The children became distracted towards the end as they became a little over being on the mat. You did break it up with buddy discussion, but it was a long time on mat, (about 35 minutes long).  
  2. On the digital teaching station make the font size larger, as it was really hard to see, not only for me, but for the children. I could see them struggling to read some of the words, especially on the class shared writing plan, on the features of a narrative quiz and on the matching of the 2 sentences from stories.
  3. Think of some discussion or quick thinking tasks for children to do while you focus on typing up examples. The children tended to become distracted and off task while you focused on writing up the example with the laptop. You couldn’t focus on them and see what they ere doing so they misbehaved.
  4. Making the lesson shorter- even though it WAS GREAT and you covered what needed to be covered, maybe cut it into 2 lessons next time to keep the children focused and on task, as at the end of the lesson they were a bit distracted and over it

Positives of lesson:


  1. Talking buddies used- an accepting and encouraging way to work through an activity and also to share strengths and weaknesses and encourages cooperating with one another no matter who or what it is.
  2. W.A.L.T and success criteria on digital teaching stations, all children can see. They know what to do and what is expected of them to do well and they know they can achieve it, which means it will be a more reachable goal/ activity to complete.
  3. Writing is created as a class by collaborating together ideas and thinking about what makes a piece of writing good/ bad or what the children could add to make it even better (previous lesson brought up to revisit what you did)
  4. The images put up on the screen were funny and the children enjoyed discussing these, which means they were interested in discussing them.
  5. Focusing on the initial event and problem was a GREAT idea. Got the children to develop their ideas more and concentrate on writing these well to make their entire story more exciting.
  6. You created fun quizzes for the children to complete and do- which they enjoyed. They didn’t realised the thinking that was going on from them, and how focused they were.


A note from Miss Kyle: Overall a GREATR lesson Geoffrey. I loved the images and the quizzes, and I know the children sure did too. (I may have to steal these for my own teaching). Your quiet nature means the children act the same and are focused on what you have to say and keep the volume at a nice level. You had a lot of co construction and planning with the children, and they knew what needed to be done and how to achieve it, because of your scaffolding and guidance. I really enjoyed coming in and seeing you teach. You had a laugh with the children too which was great to see too!




Writing Observation

17 Sep

Shared Writing lesson:


11.45- 12.30


–          Share with the children about what they think a narrative is?


–          It is a made up story that is broken up into sections:


Main points/ sections:


–          characters

–          setting

–          opening

–          build up

–          dilemma/ complication (problem)

–          Resolution (solution)

–          Ending


–          Discuss what each of these mean and what they look like.


–          Read the Grimm’s fairy tale of: Ashputtel- listen carefully through the story to see what story they think it is similar to.

How is it different though?


–          Discuss if this story had any of the main narrative sections in it? – What did they look like, how has the author made these clear to us?

(Break it down on the story plan chart A3 with children).


Go through the sections.


–          Now go back and create a plan as a class on creating our OWN NARRATIVE. Use the Ashputtel story to help create our own.

  1. Who do we want to be our main character- what will they do, look like, act like?
  2. What other characters will be involved?
  3. Where do we have the story set?
  4. What is the problem?
  5. 2 main events that happen on the way to solve the problem.
  6. What will be the solution?
  7. How will the story end?


–          Do this all on the teaching station. Then you can print a copy off for each child to stick in their books. (find under writing- shared writing narrative lesson)

–          After we have created the plan, get the children to then create their own story using a STORY PLANNER sheet to fill in. Thinking of their own idea of characters, problems etc.



Classroom Observation Report for:            Alicia Kyle


Observation Completed by:                         Geoffrey Ward


Observation Date:                                         28.08.12


Agreed Focus of Observation:


Writing – shared writing



Observation Notes and Comments:


Curriculum Area – English,  Written Language

Learning Intention – WALT… write a narrative, as a class



  • Class down to mat
  • Gave LI
  • Question: What is a narrative?
  • Q: What stages does a narrative have? Class got most. T. (Alicia) gave prompts to help class name the rest.
  • T. read a narrative (Ashpatel – later adapted into Cinderella)
  • Questions relating to the structure of a narrative were asked throughout the reading, e.g. what is the problem?
  • T. summarized section of text due to time restrictions. Finished story.
  • Q: Who were the main characters; What do we know about them; What was the main problem. Directive questions were asked to steer lesson in appropriate direction.
  • As a class, recorded info onto story plan under categories: character, setting, plot, complication, resolution, (useful words).
  • As a class, used dts to develop own narrative plan. Directive questions were asked such as: Who will be our main character; what characteristics will our main character have; what will be our problem, etc, etc.
  • Once finished – Q: Do you think you could write your own narrative based on our plan?
  • T. talked to the class about the next step: to develop their own narrative plan and use this to write their own narrative.
  • Students went to desks, put down WALT and glued in narrative plan.


To think about?

  • Could there have been more student involvement in the lesson, e.g. with a partner, before picking individuals for input (although you did this towards the end and also had a lot to get through)?
  • Was there too much instruction and time on the mat – close to 45 min (although importantly you gave them a stretch mid way through?
  • Would giving or co-constructing success criteria have helped the students initially grasp more of the lesson content?




Appraiser:________________________       Appraisee: ________________________


Date:       _______________                                Date:   _______________




Fantastic lesson! The class was engaged and enjoyed it. Great choice of story. The class had lots of fun and were motivated. I thought there was a good balance between class collaboration and teacher input based on what was achieved in the timeframe. Good range of mediums to keep the lesson engaging: recording template, narrative read out loud, DTS, discussions. Finally, the lesson was well sequenced.