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Cold and Hot writes: celebrating significant improvement for our writers

"Sometimes my cold writes are not very good because I struggle to remember the features of the writing." (Yr4 child)

Cold writes

Cold and Hot writes are a whole-school approach to improving writing. Their purpose is to demonstrate to our children that each and every one of them is able to make significant improvment in their writing, within a two week period. 

Cold Writes are introduced at the start of a two week teaching unit. Children are briefly introduced to a genre (type of writing) and given a short written task which they are asked to complete in their new Creative Writing books. The children rely heavily on what they have been taught before and what they remember. Sometimes, it can be very little, and we teach children that that is ok, because that represents their starting point. 

One evening, staff looked at children's Creative Writing books from Foundation Stage to Year Six, to look at how Cold and Hot writes were being implemented whole-school and whether it is making a difference. There has been exceptional transformation in some children's books.

Hot writes (Watch out, they're hot!!!)

After a cold write is written, children's Creative Writing books are stored away for the remainder of the two week unit. Children and teachers then work really hard together to read lots of texts matched to a genre and develop their speaking and listening skills around the genre, to help them effectively plan, draft, write, edit and improve sentences, paragraphs or extended pieces of writing. This two week period is absolutely crucial and children focus on what real writers do. The process of writing can be really tough and our learners are taught to experience that.

"Violet's Hot writes made me smile". (Miss Casey: Yr1 teacher)

Hot writes are produced at the end of a two week unit. A new task is provided linked to the genre being studied and children are asked to apply all of the skills they have developed. Where possible, we try to make cross-curricular links to other subject areas, so that our children are applying their writing skills in new contexts.

"I was so impressed with some of the amazing efforts this week in children's Hot writes. Children applied the Sentence Tricks we have been working on". (Miss Howard: Yr1 TA)
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