Is stealing always wrong? Not according to Picasso, who said, ‘Good artists copy. Great artists steal.’ With that in mind, Year 6 set about lifting the ‘best bits’ from our class novel, Skellig, to use in their own descriptive writing this week.
First, of course, they had to decide what the ‘best bits’ were. They identified the most effective language used to describe a key location in the novel, and explained why that language was so powerful. Now that they are almost at the end of their time at Gateway, they were able to talk confidently about the use of prepositional and noun phrases, imagery, onomatopoeia, the senses, alliteration, and many other authorial techniques.
Then, using charcoal and pencil, they drew pictures of the place in the novel, as the author had described it. Their pictures were detailed and atmospheric; they appreciated that they were able to visualise it so clearly as a result of the precision of the writer’s description.
Now that they understood how the author had painted his own word picture, they set about doing the same themselves, stealing his techniques, but adapting and refining their language to fit their own chosen description. Their pictures and their descriptive writing is on display in the Year 6 tutor rooms. We think a little bit of thieving has lifted their writing to another level - come and have a look and judge for yourselves.