Talk For Writing In The Early Years: How To Teach Story And Rhyme, Involving Families 2-5 Years

$89.95  Softcover (inc DVD)
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Pie Corbett, Julia Strong

  • Talk For Writing In The Early Years

208 pages
Age Range: 2 to 5
ISBN: 9780335263400

Pie Corbett’s ground-breaking Talk for Writing approach has been successfully used by thousands of schools to teach writing creatively in an engaging way that motivates children.

Now Pie and Julia take this multi-sensory approach to Early Years settings introducing a simple way to inspire young children’s language development through storytelling.

Children learn language through memorable, meaningful repetition. The Talk for Writing approach enables children to internalise the language of story so that they can imitate it, innovate on it and create their own effective stories independently. Talk for Writing in the Early Years will show you how to put rhyme and story at the heart of your work with children and parents so that young learners language development and creativity flourishes.

This multimedia resource shows you how to:

  • Select a story or rhyme the children will enjoy and tell it engagingly, encouraging the children to join in
  • Use a story map so they can picture what happens
  • Use actions to reinforce meaning and emphasise key language patterns
  • Help children build a bank of tales, developing their linguistic repertoire

The 2 DVDs contain:

  • Footage of Pie Corbett conferences with EY teachers showing Talk for Writing in action
  • Clips of nursery children engaged in the Talk for Writing approach
  • Advice on how to use the DVD and handouts to train all staff in the approach
  • Interviews with parents and nursery school teachers on the impact of Talk for Writing
  • 21 stories with story maps

Table of Contents

Part 1: Developing the Talk-for-Writing approach

The centrality of story and the origins of Talk for Writing

  1. The centrality of language development
  2. Why narrative and story reading is so important
  3. Why enriching young children’s language matters

Aladdin’s Cave: The ‘Talk for Writing and Learning’ classroom

  1. Creating a learning ethos

Telling your first story

  1. Learning the model text orally – The Little Red Hen

Imitation: Creating the bank of story ideas

  1. What do babies and young children learn from being read to?
  2. Baseline questions
  3. Assessing progress using the baseline as a yardstick
  4. Phrases that connect

Imitation: Helping the children become storytellers

  1. Getting to know the story really well
  2. Captain Kim
  3. Shan Holland with her nursery class at Whitley Park Primary, Reading
  4. The importance of storytelling – Mr Wiggle and Mr Waggle
  5. Children in Neath, Port Talbot, presenting stories
  6. Internalising the text
  7. How to help children retell, read and understand a story
  8. Using a roll of wallpaper as a text map
  9. A reception teacher explaining the impact of the approach on children learning English as an additional language


  1. The innovation stage
  2. Using post-it notes to innovate before shared writing
  3. Moving from imitation to innovation
  4. Charlie innovating on a story orally
  5. Reading and early writing in nursery
  6. Lisa Powell doing simple shared writing with nursery children at St George’s, Battersea
  7. Nursery teacher Lisa Powell explains her approach to encouraging the children to start writing
  8. Nursery teacher Julia Whitehorn helping children enjoy phonics for spelling and early writing at Warren Farm School, Birmingham
  9. Nursery children playing at writing at Yew Tree Farm Primary School, Birmingham
  10. The importance of teaching basic writing skills systematically - Matt Custance, St George's, Battersea

Invention: Moving from imitation to independent invention

  1. Moving from innovation to invention
  2. Independent invention of a story: Advanced invention on a story: a girl from St Thomas of Canterbury, Salford

Invention: Ideas for inventions and the movement from telling to writing

Part 2: Involving families

Why involving parents matters

The storytelling process as the key to family involvement

  1. The storytelling process as the key to family involvement
  2. Parents and children innovating on The Little Red Hen at Low Edges School, Sheffield
  3. Parents from Lowedges explain how and why the approach has helped them and their children

Appendix 1 Sentence, spelling and story games

Appendix 2 The early years story bank

Appendix 3 A dozen picture books ideal for retelling