Gateway to Writing

The Gateway to Writing resources highlight the importance of the four interdependent strands of language development, and the crucial role of practitioners in supporting children’s development and learning.  The materials include examples of effective practice and writing samples that show clear progression in children’s developing skills.
This resource reflects the interdependent nature of the four aspects of language development: speaking, listening, reading and writing.

Crucial role of the early years practitioner

Developing handwriting
This guidance is designed to provide some additional support for practitioners working with children in Reception classes.

Developing children’s independent writing
This resource will give the practitioner support in a number of areas that includes both the transcriptional and compositional elements of writing.

Learning about sentences
This resource includes quick group activities that assist practitioners in teaching young children how to begin and form simple sentences.

Literate role-play provision for boys
This audit tool is a role-play provision for boys, including resources.

Literal role provision for boys – audit
This audit tool answers questions about how to ensure adequate and appropriate resources are available when developing a literate role-play area to interest boys.

Meeting the needs of gifted and talented boys
This resource demonstrates how practitioners should be prepared to support the learning of boys whose language is well developed and who show early and continuing interest in books, reading and writing.

Parental Involvement
This resource supports practitioners in developing and encouraging parental involvement.

Using the gateway to writing resource – handwriting
This resource demonstrates guidance on how to teach handwriting in the Reception year, and also on how to provide specific support for left-handed children.

Using the gateway to writing resource – identifying the issue
This resource will help practitioners identify issues and key priorities for development.

Writing provision for boys – audit
This audit tool includes issues for consideration and comments/evidence.

Case Study 1
This case study demonstrates how in a children’s centre, the practitioner uses the information gathered from an audit to develop writing opportunities across the different areas both inside and outdoors.

Case Study 2
This case study demonstrates how practitioners used favourite books to help plan different role-play areas that stimulated children’s desire to write.

Case Study 3
This case study demonstrates how reading well-known stories to the children, and ensuring that there are opportunities for them to develop their fine and gross motor skills, helps practitioners to support both the transcriptional and compositional aspects of writing.

Case Study 4
This case study demonstrates how dinosaurs not only provide opportunities for the practitioner to share with parents and develop links with the home learning environment, but also to introduce different forms of writing through exciting experiences.

Boys and writing
This resource demonstrates ways that practitioners can support boys in the early stages of learning to write.

Letters and Sounds

Letters and Sounds aimed to build children’s speaking and listening skills,  phonological awareness and oral blending and segmenting, to prepare them for learning to read and write.
The activities are intended to be used as part of a broad and rich language curriculum that has speaking and listening at its centre, links language with physical and practical experiences, and provides an environment rich in print and abundant in opportunities to engage with books.

Phase 1
Early reading

Talk for Writing

The Talk for Writing resources help with children’s learning and development in Reception classes. They include talk strategies and a range of case studies of teachers that have put into practice the principles and approaches into the literacy learning of their classes.

Good Writers
Story Telling, Story Making
Writer Talk

Writing Samples

These writing samples show how learning has been applied, including the child’s synthetic phonic knowledge and skills, and the background of how the writing was produced, including the child’s own comments about what they wrote.

Adam 1-3
Adam 4-5
Courtney 1
Courtney 2
Lewis 4-5
Lewis 6-7
Lily 1
Lily 2
Tehniyat 2

Case Studies

Early Language Development Programme

This case study summarises the key learning emerging from the full series of ELDP evaluation case studies.  It draws on insights from the case studies from 12 sites.

Critical thinking

First Steps Day Nursery followed children’s interest in the festive period to lead practice around critical thinking.

Modelling quality language

This case study demonstrates the in-depth learning the children experienced due to the graduates secure understanding of the communication and early learning language and how to use them to create high quality interactions between children and staff.