While children will learn an immense amount about writing during whole-class sessions, it is important that they also have frequent opportunities to write independently from the beginning of the Foundation Stage. As they experiment with mark-making, children try out the skills and knowledge they have acquired through modelled and shared experiences.
Children should have access to a variety of writing materials throughout the day to facilitate independent writing in a range of meaningful contexts, for example a list of things needed for a new play area, an invitation to a show or a recount of a personal event.
Children may be writing individually, in pairs or in small groups as they attempt to record their thoughts and read them to others.
Teachers can observe children’s understanding of:
written communication as they begin to demonstrate that: – printed text is recorded speech.
– writing can be read to or by others.
– writing can be used for different purposes.
the secretarial aspects of writing as they begin to: – problem-solve how to write words.
– form writing directionally, one word at a time.
– form some letters correctly.
It is important to remember that children need ample opportunities to try out the skills and knowledge they have acquired at each stage of their development – from mark-making through to more conventional writing.