Writing Yr 1 – 3

Writing in Years 1 – 3 

As soon as the alphabetic code is embedded through speed sounds sessions, children can write simple words and build on their success. Children write every day, rehearsing out loud what they want to write, and composing sentence by sentence, until they are confident enough to write independently. They write at the level of their spelling knowledge e.g. they use their knowledge of the alphabetic code and tricky words they have learnt. In every lesson, children build up their spelling knowledge so they are able to spell complex words independently. The children have the opportunity to use adventurous vocabulary in their writing because they have encountered such language in their reading and have talked about what those words mean. 

Children in Reception to Year 2 use the RWI Phonics programme where every lesson has three elements: Speed Sounds, Storybook and Writing. Writing activities include repeated daily tasks such as:

  •  Hold a Sentence (teaches children to remember a whole sentence in their head before they write it down with the correct punctuation and spelling. The sentences we ask the children to write include words that they have already been taught how to spell)
  • Proofread (children are taught to spot and fix errors)
  • Build a Sentence (children are given the opportunity to create their own sentence that shows the meaning of a word and edit a sentence. This allows the children to critique a sentence using their knowledge of spelling, punctuation and grammar)
  • Final ‘long write’ which incorporates all of these taught skills and allows children to write independently. 


When children move off the Phonics programme in (generally this will be in Year 2), they begin RWI Comprehension. This programme:

  • uses the key strategies in RWI Phonics to continue Pupil Progress
  • develops reading fluency and comprehension through fiction & non -fiction texts
  • improves children’s writing by developing vocabulary, grammar and spelling


The majority of children in Year 3 are taught through the RWI Language & Literacy programme. This programme uses

  • a step-by-step approach through whole class shared reading of complete texts: develops comprehension skills and gives pupils the confidence to write ambitiously and accurately
  • texts by well-known authors engage children in studying whole texts
  • opportunities to build children’s vocabulary using drama and discussion activities
  • detailed lesson plans for teaching comprehension, vocabulary and grammar


While we follow a progression of ambitious and challenging programmes at Crossley Hall, children move off one programme and onto another when they are ready. While we follow a ‘what to teach when’ order, there is no ‘set’ date when children have to move on and do only move when they are skilled and confident!