Fairytales

Why do this project?

Fairy tales were not my escape from reality as a child; rather, they were my reality – for mine was a world in which good and evil were not abstract concepts, and like fairytale heroines, no magic would save me unless I had the wit and heart and courage to use it wisely – Terri Windling

Fairytales and folk tales have a high status in literature for children. They are a part of cultural heritage; they express and transmit the values and wisdom of a community; they appeal strongly to the imagination and include familiar, much-loved stories that sprang out of an oral story-telling tradition.

There are various interpretations of what fairytales might mean, why they were composed and how they could be related to a child’s psychological development. These interpretations range from psychoanalytical (the subconscious), to historical and material (folk tales: stories for and about peasants), to political (feminism, class, power structures).

Writing a fairytale is likely to give the children in your class pleasure and enjoyment because they will be confident with the familiar characters, strong narrative shapes, language patterns and structures. They may also enjoy creating the sense of moral justice with which so many fairytales end. Also, of course, the possibility of subverting the genre or writing from the perspective of another character means that there are many opportunities for a writer to entertain and be humorous, ironic and surprising. Just as Shakespeare is continually reinvented for modern times, the same is true of fairytales.

This class writing project provides you with:

+ Comprehensive teacher notes:

  • Suggestions for both year group and whole school writing progression
  • Advice for teachers on how to write great mentor texts
  • Over 40 writing study and functional grammar mini-lessons
  • Suggested book list for your classroom library

+ Our popular and photocopiable child-facing Genre Booklet which includes:

  • Year 3 purpose and audience writing wheel
  • Publishing and performance menu
  • 5 exemplar texts
  • Idea generation techniques
  • Dabbling and drafting advice
  • Revision checklist
  • Editing checklist

+ Our quick guide to teaching writing

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