Talk4Writing at Provo Primary

‘Talk4Writing‘, is an innovative approach to developing speech and teaching creative and non-fiction writing that is fun, engaging and motivating for children. Take a look at our our series of amazing Talking Text videos, which we have recorded across the school.  We hope you enjoy watching them as much as we do!

Also check out all of our Talk4Writing blog posts:


Talk4Writing: Toddler Storytellers are ‘Going on a Bear Hunt

Talk4Writing:  Preschoolers Keep on ‘Walking with Pete the Cat’

Talk4Writing:  Junior Kindergarten Recount The day we made Muffins

Talk4Writing:  Kindergarten Instructional Text – How to Build a Rocket

Talk4Writing:  Year 1 Share their Enormous Storytelling Talents retelling ‘The Enormous Turnip’

Talk4Writing:  Year 2 are Storytellers, Puppeteers and Writers retelling ‘The Papaya that Spoke’

Talk4Writing:  Year 3 are inspired by Native America Culture tale ‘The Buffalo and the Clever Coyote

Talk4Writing:  Year 4 Journey to another world through ‘Where the Wild Things Are

Talk4Writing:  Allow Year 5 to Persuade you with ‘I have a Dream’


Year 2 asks…‘Do you know how to read instructions’



Year 4 tell us ‘How to carry out an Investigation’



Year 4 create a Talking Book to explain ‘How to carry out an Investigation


So what is Talk4Writing?

Talk4Writing is an approach developed by Pie Corbett that helps children to speak the language of texts before they attempt to write it. It uses high quality model texts to introduce them to different story/text types which they then learn off by heart as a ‘Talking Text’.  A class story map, consisting of pictures and some key words, prompts the children as they retell the text aloud as a group. Repeating this many times, they begin to internalise it.

Together as a class, the children scrutinise these texts with a writer’s critical eye. They learn the underlying structures and the process of planning and create their own story maps. They also learn about the key strategies for creating interesting characters and settings, and how to use a range of sentence types to create different effects. Multi-sensory activities, such as role-play, hot seating and puppet theatre help build children’s confidence and linguistic ability, and deepen their understanding of the text.

Finally, the children go on to write their own stories and non-fiction texts. They experiment with ideas and begin to explore their own style of writing, using sentence types from the model text. With the class writing together, the process becomes a joint adventure. Children support each other and the results are exciting!

The Talk4Writing approach builds children’s language knowledge orally, which in turn develops and enhances their writing skills as they progress through the school. Starting in our Early Years classes,  Talk4Writing begins at this early age as storytelling and early mark making. Move through each year group and, as more writing emerges, the process increasingly develops. Each week as you view each post, take a look at the quality of writing in our lower and upper year groups, and observe all of features of writing that they are able to include. The growth in development of children’s writing in these short primary years is truly phenomenal!