BoomWriter and the Writing Bee- What Impact?
BoomWriter- Lanesfield Primary School Case Study
‘BoomWriter was really fun and lets my imagination run wild.’ Gurvir.
‘It inspires children and gives them a taste of being a real author.’ Heron.
I have been fortunate enough to work closely with the year six pupils and staff at Lanesfield Primary School, Wolverhampton, on their BoomWriter project. The project started with a high quality first chapter inspired by the music video Titanium (David Guetta ft Sia ) This visual hook coupled with the collaborative and competitive nature of BoomWriter helped the pupils create engaging and memorable pieces of writing.
The children spent time deconstructing the text and looking for the key writing features that they would need to use in their own writing. They moved on to writing and editing their work and using the BoomWriter software to decide a winning chapter.
‘It provides an engaging stimulus and challenge for all children. The element of competition and the chance to become a published author inspired the children to try their very best. The voting stage allowed the children the opportunity to peer assess and edit to a high and appropriate level. Not only did their literacy skills improve but also their ICT skills.’ Mrs Sutherland- Year Six Teacher.
I was always impressed with how engaged all the pupils were with their writing and that they took the whole process seriously and with a great deal of maturity. This no doubt impacted on their work and knowing that their writing had an audience meant that the standard that the children set for themselves was high. Their ability to use success criteria in their writing and voting meant that each pupil was acutely aware of what they needed to do to be successful in their writing.
The BoomWriter process fit in perfectly with the way the school already studied English:
‘We found it very easy to run and it fitted in well with our already established two week Talk For Writing plan.’ Mrs Sutherland.
Across England, the engagement of boys in writing has long been a challenging aspect of teaching and learning. This project really captured the imagination of the boys- particularly the voting and competition element.
‘It helps you push yourself and get into writing more.’ Alex.
‘Boys responded extremely well to the BoomWriter project and even asked for a club during lunchtimes or after school to carry on writing.’ Mrs Sutherland
Even reluctant writers were engrossed in the writing project:
‘By providing a competitive element and purpose for the writing, it has proved a great incentive for reluctant writers. I can honestly say that 100% of the children in my class have become fully engaged in writing since the commencement of Boomwriter.’ Mrs Noakes- Year Six Teacher.
The school had a visit from an external advisor that came away impressed by the writing created by the pupils and many of the children have evidenced writing skills that would be judged at Greater Depth- the highest standard possible for children to achieve in writing at the end of primary school.
We took the project in an interesting and dynamic direction by adding the opportunity to develop an audio dramatization of the chapters that included the children taking on the roles of narrator and actors. The children also added music and sound effects to bring their narrative to life.
From planning the sessions with the staff right the way through to being at the assembly where we handed out the children’s books, the BoomWriter experience no doubt has sparked an interest in, and enjoyment of, writing that will last well beyond the school year.
‘It’s fun and makes you want to write more.’ Channan.
‘I like boom writer because I get to experience different people’s writing.’ Hannah.