Information report: Old and new toys
During a four-week unit of work on information texts, the class looked at a range of information books and talked about their features and layout. Before writing an information report, Nikita made notes on her own choice of subject matter: Old and new toys. Children were provided with preformatted paper as an aid to organisation and layout, although in Nikita's case this seemed to be more of a hindrance.
Clements, S., Tomlinson, F. and Evans, J. (2007). Originally published in 100 Literacy Framework Lessons Year 1 (Scholastic, ISBN 9780439945219). Copyright © Sylvia Clements, Fiona Tomlinson and Jean Evans. Used with kind permission.
- On the first page of the report, Nikita tries to squeeze in straightforward information about what the toys are like with comments about what 'you' have to do to play with them, plus a mini-quiz. Different sentence types (statements, instructions, questions) are used for these purposes (AF5 L2 b1 and b2), but the time references are not consistent: 'Victorian children play with a dolls house. Open it up and move the dolls around' (not AF5 L2 b3).
- Clause structure is grammatically correct, as is sentence demarcation apart from the lack of question marks in the 'did you know?' section (AF6 L2 b1 and b2).
- AF3 and AF4 are not easily applicable as an organisational template was provided. Nikita has some problems in using this writing frame to present her ideas clearly. She uses only one illustration, mixes up information about the different toys and overrides the format completely in the 'did you know' facts for the Nintendo DS (AF4 L1 b1).
- Content is repetitive and word choices do not help to contrast 'old' and 'new' toys (AF1 L2 b1).
- The template makes an assessment of AF2 difficult. Nikita appears to have an idea of how to write a report, but struggles to accommodate the layout given (AF2 L1 b1).
- Vocabulary is straightforward and key words are repeated (AF7 L2 b1).
- Phonetically plausible spelling, but some inconsistencies in spelling in both content and grammatical function words, for example 'plastic', 'children', 'with' and problems with double letters, for example 'different', 'buttons' (AF8 L1 b1 and b2).
- Nikita's handwriting shows an initial attempt to use entry and exit strokes, but not sustained (Handwriting and presentation L1 b1, b2 and b3).