Sunday, 17 May 2020

KS3/GCSE Using pictures



In the GCSE exam you usually have the choice of using a picture to write a story or description. it can be a tricky decision - do you use the picture right in front of you and hope you can write enough, or go with the story starter ideas with nothing to help but your imagination?

In this task, I want you to practice using the same picture for a story and a description so that you can see how differently these turn out, and which you personally find easier. When it comes to the exam, practice like this can help you make the best decision to suit you and your skills.

Notice how my ideas for story and description are different. I want your finished pieces of writing to be different too, with only the picture to link them. However, details you find in the picture can be the same - both description and story can include a young footballer in a brightly-lit stadium. It's what you create around those details which matters most.

I have given you slightly more guidance than you usually get in the exams, but we are just practicing so I don't want you to struggle!

Story
Use the picture to write a story about overcoming fear.

Description
Write a description inspired by the picture with an exciting atmosphere.


Check out my book Creative Writing for Teens for more ideas and longer projects showing you how to write for yourself and the exams.

© Amanda J Harrington 2020

My books on Amazon
My websites for books and tuition
Find me on Facebook and Twitter!

Read my Autism blog
And my fairy blog

Saturday, 16 May 2020

Veronica loves cooking



Oh, now, this looks like trouble!

Veronica loves cooking and Aunty Jay loves leaving you to take care of Veronica.

Write a story about your visit to Aunty Jay's house and the afternoon you spend with your cousin  Veronica.

My Creative Writing for Kids series has lots of writing ideas, projects and activities to make writing fun.

© Amanda J Harrington 2020

My books on Amazon
My websites for books and tuition
Find me on Facebook and Twitter!

Read my Autism blog
And my fairy blog

KS3/GCSE Plan a description




Writing a description can seem simple - especially if you are not as happy creating stories. However, don't be fooled into thinking descriptions are the easy option!

Your description should not sound like a story but it can still include interest and excitement for the reader. Imagine if you were describing diving with sharks to someone, it would be hard to make it sound dull! At the same time, descriptions are supposed to be sensible, measured, more fixed in real life for the exam questions, and often based on a picture.

With that in mind, write a description based on or inspired by this picture, using one of the plans below. Remember, a picture-based description can extend beyond the picture, including the 'world' around it.

For the plans, write notes for each sub-heading. You should be thinking of what you will include in that section of the plan and you can even plan your adjectives, metaphors, similes, alliteration etc, rather than trying to think of them while writing the description.

Plans like this are detailed enough to help you write a full description without going off track and without finishing after only a couple of paragraphs. You can use this kind of planning in the exam, even if you shorten it a bit. Planning in the exam is worth the extra time you take from your writing because it will make your finished answer much better and might gain you an extra mark or two if you don't have time to finish your description.

Plan 1
1. An old box in the back of a cupboard.
2. Dust, dead spiders, water damage.
3. Discovery of picture, who are they?
4. Feelings, reaction, detailed description of picture.
5. Returning picture to box, what you plan to do with it.

Plan 2
1. Your grandfather was part of a large family.
2. Describe what his life was like with many brothers and sisters.
3. Contrast his life as a child with what your childhood was like.

Notice how feelings are included in both plans. Be aware this might not be necessary in every exam question.

One plan is longer than the other but I don't want you to write more for Plan 1. Your sections in the plan do not need to be full sections in the description. Plan 2 could have four sections, for instance splitting number 3 into two parts. Plan 1 could have four sections by including 1 and 2 together, or 3 and 4. Be flexible with your finished description without losing sight of the plan!

Check out my book Creative Writing for Teens for more ideas and longer projects showing you how to write for yourself and the exams.



© Amanda J Harrington 2020



My books on Amazon
My websites for books and tuition


Find me on Facebook and Twitter!



Read my Autism blog
And my fairy blog


A story somewhere