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How to use rhythm as a tool for writing success

Sep 10, 2018 | Literacy

What brings writing alive for boys brings writing alive for all children, says author Frances Adlam, whose book Writing Success for Boys has just been published by Essential Resources.

For children who struggle with writing, Roald Dahl’s words ring true: there’s nothing scarier than an empty page.

“First of all, we need to accept that writing is really difficult. That is why they world is full of quotes and books from famous, successful authors who talk about writer’s block,” Frances says.

“As teachers, once we accept and acknowledge this, we can then make a bridge from being in our head and talking – to creating steps that help all children make that empty page or screen less scary.”

Just sitting down and writing doesn’t work, Frances says. What’s needed is rhythm and pre-work that brings the subject matter alive.

“Writing comes alive with all the pre-work to the writing: let’s imagine, let’s talk about those ideas, let’s act what we’ll write about. It’s fun, exciting and engaging.”

While creating this rhythm provides a clear pathway for building success in writing for all children, specific external factors may support boys in the development of their writing skills. For example, boys who are avid readers or who have male role models who read and write, are often more successful at writing.

Nevertheless, research shows that all children under-achieve in writing compared with other key learning areas such as numeracy or reading.

“Writing is a tricky process. We must plan our lessons in an inclusive way and above all make writing fun.”

Research showing many boys are disengaged from the process of writing has laid down the challenge; this series responds. Boys won’t be able to resist its inclusive, purposeful writing programme, which puts fun and creativity at centre stage. Grounded in the author’s unique Bridge to Writing philosophy, Writing Success for Boys cleverly connects the dots between boys and literacy, engagement in literacy, the rhythm of learning and master teaching. 

Frances Adlam is a highly experienced and creative educator and therapist. Frances has worked in all areas of the educational system – as a teacher, lecturer, writer of resources, adviser and counsellor. Frances currently has her own private practice – Out of the Box – working as an educationalist and therapist with highly unique and creative children. 


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