Below is a table we share in our latest eBook: Supporting Children With SEND To Be Great Writers: A Guide For Teachers And SENCOS (Young & Ferguson 2023). It shares research-based writing practices which are specific to teaching children to write in the EYFS.
|Research-based writing practices specific to the EYFS|
|Interconnect your phonics, encoding and letter formation instruction and provide this kind of instruction daily. Encourage children to use ‘sound spellings’ while writing (Young & Ferguson 2022).|
Encourage children to engage in emergent writing practices – especially using ‘kid writing’ (Young & Ferguson 2022).
Teach a daily mini-lesson about an aspect of writing and being a writer. This instruction could last anywhere between 1-15 minutes (Young & Ferguson 2022).
Teach young writers the ‘book-making process’ and undertake specific book-making projects (The Writing For Pleasure Centre 2023; Young & Ferguson 2023).
Set aside anywhere between 30-90 minutes every day for children to write and make books. Invite children to use and apply what you taught them that day in their own writing (Young & Ferguson 2022).
Teachers and assistant teachers should make their own books alongside small groups of children during daily book-making time (Young & Ferguson 2023).
During this time, they can provide live verbal feedback and additional responsive instruction through pupil conferencing (Ferguson & Young 2021).
Ensure children can access book-making and other writing opportunities throughout the day.
Don’t delay teaching about writing. Start on the very first day.
This table is based on following research evidence:
- Wharton-McDonald, R., Pressley, M., & Hampston, J. (1998) Outstanding literacy instruction in first grade: Teacher practices and student achievement, Elementary School Journal, 99, 101–128 [LINK]
- Wray, D. & Medwell, J. (1999) ‘Effective teachers of literacy: knowledge, beliefs and practices’, in International Electronic Journal For Leadership in Learning 3(9) [LINK]
- Pressley, M., Wharton-Mcdonald, R., Allington, R., Block, C. C., Morrow, L., Tracey, D., Baker, K., Brooks, G., Cronin, J., Nelson, E., & Woo, D. (2001) A study of effective first grade literacy instruction, Scientific Studies of Reading, 5, 35-58 [LINK]
- Louden, W., Rohl, M., Barrat-Pugh, C., Brown, C., Cairney, T., Elderfield, J., House, H., Meiers, M., Rivaland, J., & Rowe, K. J. (2005) In teachers’ hands: Effective literacy teaching practices in the early years of schooling, Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, 28, 173-252 [LINK]
- Graham, S., Kiuhara, S., McKeown, D., & Harris, K. R. (2012). A meta-analysis of writing instruction for students in the elementary grades, Journal of Educational Psychology, 104(4) [LINK]
- Gerde, H.K., Bingham, G.E., Wasik, B.A. (2012) Writing in Early Childhood Classrooms: Guidance for Best Practices. Early Childhood Education Journal 40, pp.351–359 [LINK]
- Dombey, H. (2013) What we know about teaching writing, Preschool & Primary Education, 1, 22-40 [LINK]
- Hall, A., Simpson, A., Guo, Y., Wang, S. (2015) Examining the Effects of Preschool Writing Instruction on Emergent Literacy Skills: A Systematic Review of the Literature, Literacy Research and Instruction, 54:2, 115-134 [LINK]
- Hall, A., (2019) Every Child is a Writer: Understanding the Importance of Writing in Early Childhood Institute for Child Success [LINK]
- Managhan, E. (2020) Effective Practices to Balance Literacy Instruction in Early Childhood, Learning to Teach, 9(1) [LINK]
- Rowe, D., Shimizu, A., Davis, Z. (2021) Essential Practices for Engaging Young Children as Writers: Lessons from Expert Early Writing Teachers, The Reading Teacher, pp. 1-10 [LINK]
- Hall, A. H., Gao, Q., Guo, Y., Xie, Y. (2022) Examining the effects of kindergarten writing instruction on emergent literacy skills: a systematic review of the literature, Early Child Development and Care, 1-13 [LINK]
- Young, R., Ferguson, F. (2023) The Writing For Pleasure Centre’s Handbook Of Research On Teaching Young Writers Brighton: The Writing For Pleasure Centre [LINK]
If you are interested in reading about how to support children with SEND to be great writers, get our latest eBook: Supporting children with SEND to be great writers: A guide for teachers and SENCOS. For more information on developing children in EYFS and KS1 as writers, see our eBook: Getting children up and running as book-makers: Lessons for EYFS-KS1 teachers Remember, these publications are FREE for members: