Writing stories - fables, myths and legends
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This fables, myths and legends unit is the second in a block of six fiction units in Year 5. It has four parts, with oral or written outcomes and assessment opportunities at regular intervals. It is linked to the Primary National Strategy Keys to Learning resource, Castle Attack – Images and sounds (DFES). It can involve an oral retelling of the legend of Robin Hood for tourists, visiting a medieval castle and producing a version of the written legend for the castle tourist booklet. Whole-class collections of myths and legends could be established to support independent reading for pleasure. Texts could include films, comics, picture books, TV programmes and written texts.
Phase 1
Read and analyse features of the text-type. Make comparisons between different versions of the same fable, myth or legend.
Phase 2
Children continue familiarisation with the text-type. Discuss and investigate the effect of different techniques used by the author. Work in a group to explore and empathise with characters through drama activities. Children use a reading journal to record inferences and demonstrate understanding of characters by writing in the first person.
Phase 3
Make comparisons between oral and written narratives. The teacher demonstrates effective note-taking techniques. Children make notes on visual and oral performances before working in small groups to prepare and present an oral retelling of the legend of Robin Hood for an audio or digital video file.
Phase 4
Children evaluate their oral performances against agreed success criteria. The teacher demonstrates how to write a legend, transferring oral storytelling skills into writing. Children work collaboratively to write the legend, exploring how to transfer the visual and oral text to a written narrative.
• Read wide range of myths, legends, fables and traditional stories. Discuss common themes. Identify features of particular fiction genres.
• Read several different versions of same story, for example retellings from different times or countries, film versions. Draw out evidence of changing context and audience.
• Discuss and look for evidence of narrative viewpoint in particular stories, for example looking at the way that characters are presented. Infer the perspective of the author from what is written and implied.
• Plan and tell stories orally. Show awareness of audience and use techniques such as humour or repetition.
• Plan and write a new version of a fable, myth, legend or traditional tale. Identify audience and adapt writing accordingly. Revise to produce polished version of at least one story.