Building writing stamina using short films CPD - Philip Webb & Tim Bleazard

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This series of 3 online twilights, led by Independent literacy consultant Philip Webb and Tim Bleazard, Curriculum Innovation, will show how short films can be used to engage and motivate children to plan, draft edit and publish their work using traditional and technological approaches.


Over the last ten years, Philip and Tim have worked on several Film Literacy projects which have been proven to raise reading and writing standards. This led Mark Reid, the Head of Education at the British Film Institute to comment that Bradford led the world in primary Film Literacy education. We have shared our findings, techniques and strategies far beyond Bradford in London, Cardiff, Belfast and Busan in South Korea.

In our experience of running many Film Literacy projects over ten years, we have seen how tech can be used to inspire and excite learners who can be reluctant to write. We’ll share resources to help scaffold tasks, so you don’t have to spend lots of time prepping materials. We’ll show how to use ‘quick wins’ to help children annotate, comment, write, record, refine and perform writing based on a central film.


The main English theme will be writing – and in particular developing writing stamina, using short, long and extended pieces of writing based upon film.

The following statements are from the Couch to 5k running app. Look how they apply to some children’s experience of writing:

· feel defeated and give up when just getting started.
· gradually build … stamina.
· make the challenge feel achievable right from the start.

The approach will be suitable for any year group in Key Stage Two with teachers adapting the content to meet the requirements of grammar for that age group.

We will provide plans based on the chosen film for teachers to use and adapt.

In the context of the films, we will look at building writing stamina focusing upon the three Cs and three Ss of film literacy: Camera, Character and Colour and Setting, Story and Sound. We will focus upon drafting and editing with ‘tiny texts’ beginning with an emphasis on crafting great sentences. These are equivalent to the stretches before running and we aim to build in success before struggle. Many children can be rushed into extended writing before they have mastered the sentence.


Session 1: 01/03/2023 | 15:45 - 17:45: Before writing - we will focus upon developing understanding of the film using the Cs and Ss mentioned above to give children a context and a voice for writing. The writing focus will be upon sentence level work with crafting great sentences; sentence combining; sentence shrinking and expanding

Session 2: 22/03/2023 | 15:45 - 17:45: During writing - here we will look at the application of the sentence level work in short and medium burst writing relating to the story, characters and setting. We will talk about teaching with ‘tiny texts’ and evaluating and editing short pieces of writing thus gradually developing writing stamina.

Session 3: 26/04/2023 | 15:45 - 17:45: After writing - this actually focuses upon end of unit extended writing and the application of earlier work on crafting sentences and editing and evaluating writing. As these pieces will be longer, we will also look at ideas for text structure and organisation and text cohesion.

Booking Information

This is a live online course - join up details will be provided to delegates. The cost for all 3 sessions is £270/delegate (£250/delegate for teachers at schools with a Curriculum Innovation subscription package) or £1000 for whole key stage two groups for all three sessions (£900 for schools with a Curriculum Innovation subscription package). Click here to book a place and enter the number of teachers from your school you would like to attend and you will receive a quote to accept for the training. Please note if you book for multiple attendees all communication will be sent to the lead name to forward on to other participants.



Published: 09/01/2023
Audience: KS2 Teachers
Contact: Sarah Hawkins

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