Christmas Writing

I have to say that it is a bumper year for great christmas adverts .  I am in love with Mog and his christmas calamity and think it beats the John Lewis advert hands down. I do think that the John Lewis advert and Baboon on the Moon are very similar.
Here is my list of favourite christmas adverts that would be great to use to support writing and as a little present, there are three teaching sequences now available to go with them – one for Yr1/2, one for Yr3/4 and one for Yr5/6.

mogThis is such a fun story where a chain of events lead to Mog escaping quickly from the kitchen, which is in ruins.  I love the expressions on Mog’s face as he moves through the catastrophe.  We have a sequence for Yrs 3 and 4 based on this advert.


mononthemoonThis is a great advert, which if Mog wasn’t around would be my favourite this year.  It tells the story of a man (grandpa) far away and his loneliness.  The little girl goes to endless trouble to get in contact with him and because this is Christmas, she manages it. We have a sequence for Yrs1 and 2 based on this advert and Baboon on themoon . Although the sequence moves onto invented writing, you could stop at the end of the innovate stage. Download the sequence at .

spanishlotto My third favourite christmas ad is the spanish lottery advert which tells about a man who goes to work every day in a rather boring job and the things he does to pass the time. The staff then win the lottery and he thinks he is not included. But it’s christmas so I am sure you can guess the ending.  We have  a sequence for Yrs5 and 6 based on this advert at


kwikfitMy final ad is one from KwikFit  just for the joy of Christmas and the magic of Santa Claus for children. I love the reindeer nose peeking out at the end. is where it can be found.



Do you have a favourite Christmas ad to support writing that we should know about?




Capturing ideas in a teaching sequence

Teaching sequences are the bedrock of literacy teaching.  They are where teaching objectives are transformed into activities that will help children learn. They provide the focus and emphasis for the children in your class.  They allow you the space and time to attend to what is important.

Teaching sequences are divided up into four sections: Familiaristion or immersion (in the text), capturing ideas, shared writing and the key outcome.  In fact we start with the key outcome because that helps decide which activities we do and don’t do.

The capturing ideas part of the teaching sequence is one of the more challenging aspects of the sequence.  It is the bridge between the text that is being used as a model and children writing for themselves.  It is where the structure and language features meld with the content to be written about.

It is important to distinguish between capturing ideas around structure and language features and capturing ideas about content.  The type of teaching and activities for each is different.  If children are plotted onto the simple view of writing, it may help to focus where the teaching should be aimed.  They will not be in the same place for each peice of writing.

In the next post about capturing ideas we will look at what sorts of activities could be used and for which aspect.

Let us know what you find tricky about capturing ideas and we will incorporate some solutions into the post.

Image by Alfon