Go to navigation
It is currently Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:33 pm

All times are UTC




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:06 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:01 pm
Posts: 84
Hello everyone,
I have been researching various resources for improving creative writing and came across this highly recommended book titled "Descriptosaurus". Its bit expensive, so I wanted to find out from the fellow parents if its woth the money? My son is in Year 5 and will need to do a decriptive writing piece in 11+ Indi school exam.
Many thanks in advance.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 4:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:13 am
Posts: 452
Apart from being expensive it could be very confusing (scary actually) for a 10 year old. I think it is more for GCSE children.

The one I bought by mistake is lying in attic and covered with spider webs :)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 4:51 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 1:04 pm
Posts: 1187
I liked it and thought it was helpful, but ds tends to rely on a normal thesaurus. Certainly I think it is the right level for 11+ creative writing.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:12 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:01 pm
Posts: 84
Thanks both of above helpful people. DS's teacher has recommended it and I have ordered. Will let you know my own feedback.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:17 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:57 am
Posts: 200
parent2013 wrote:
Apart from being expensive it could be very confusing (scary actually) for a 10 year old. I think it is more for GCSE children. The one I bought by mistake is lying in attic and covered with spider webs


Confusing? Scary? For a 10 year old? Spider webs?! Thats rather strange experience. My child has been using it since the begining of year 3 (age 7) and his teacher was very impressed with the sudden improvement in his writing. He use this book on his own and saves me a lot of time; infact he achieved level 4a (the highest level the school could award in year 4 I was informed ). So, it must have been useful for him.

_________________
"The only one rehab centre that I long to be in, is the 11+ Rehab Centre" a quote by MSC :-)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 10:34 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6693
Location: Herts
4a might be the highest level that your school is prepared to teach at in Year 4 but Sats levels are to do with ability not age. It is a record of what level your writing has reached in the work that is available to you in that year. Students could well be writing at a far higher level at home but may not have the opportunity to show this level in school work. I know of Maths students who were Level 7 at primary school but only because that level work was available to them in extension work. I also know of Year Three and Four students on Level Six English but this is not work they are doing at school. There is the issue of primary school teachers who are not English specialists being able to recognise secondary level English work. It is fantastic that your ds is doing so well in creative writing. It will serve him well in Secondary school. Will he being doing a Creative Writing exam for Eleven plus? Pop over to the Essex thread and see the reaction of the parents who have just been told that Creative Writing is being added to the CSSE exam next September. It seems that Creative Writing is not a popular choice. DG


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:30 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
Creative writing in an entrance exam is like Marmite!

I have Descriptosaurus. Like many of my books I enjoy it but have hardly got round to my children using it!

My year 5 child has used it once and found it useful. She had been asked to write five descriptive sentences about an imaginary beach scene. At the outset she had a quick look at the relevant section and jotted down some words and phrases that she thought she might choose to use. It resulted in a little bit of vocabulary growth too so that was a positive!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 1:33 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:57 am
Posts: 200
Interesting reply, but I feel it's missing the point .

"4a might be the highest level that your school is prepared to teach at in Year 4 but Sats levels are to do with ability not age "

The question was weather the book was useful , as it was said it was confusing, scary and the fact it was gathering Spider webs suggests to me that some found it completely useless. All I was saying was my DS found it useful and helped his result. We didn't find it useless at all and certainly not gathering spider webs :-) He uses it all the time. I also did not say that SAT levels are to do with age and not ability. SATS levels are all about ability, isn't that obvious tough?! :-) I wasn't referring to his age in relation to his level, I was just saying I believe the book helped him a lot and contributed to his level. :-) Also, 4a is not the level the school is prepared to teach, its the mximum level that they will award at the end of year 4 and will not award a level 5.
The reason for this was this actual words from his teacher "Your son is Level 5, but we can't award level 5 because we have not covered level 5 materials in year 4..." . That's makes sense actually.

" It is a record of what level your writing has reached in the work that is available to you in that year"

I find this difficult to understand . Yes, indeed , the assessment was based on their work for the WHOLE YEAR; so you are saying a whole year of work and assessments every half term does not represent a child ability?! Is not a month, it's the whole academic year.

"Students could well be writing at a far higher level at home but may not have the opportunity to show this level in school work"

"I know of Maths students who were Level 7 at primary school but only because that level work was available to them in extension work. I also know of Year Three and Four students on Level Six English but this is not work they are doing at school"

"may not have the opportunity to show this level in school work"?! For the whole year?! Why not? why didnt the child have the opportunity to show his or her HIGHER level works which he or she does at home the for WHOLE ONE YEAR? The majority of their work at home are school work, which are then handed in the next few days or the following week, are they not? Is your child doing a whole lot of extra writing at home that are much higher quality but not seen by his / her teacher? And assuming he / she does that, so he / she writes at a lower level at school in all his or her school work FOR THE WHOLE YEAR and then go home and write at a HIGHER LEVEL? I'm just trying to understand how that happens. My DS doesn't do a lot of writing outside the school work he was given for the whole year, so I take my hat off if you child did/ does that. With school clubs, sports, martial arts, violin, orchestra, piano, language class - there was not much time my DS could find to do extra work in creative writing at home. He probably write at a different level too if he did. If he did, do you think he would have written at a lower level at home and only write at a higher level at school FOR THE WHOLE YEAR? That seems to be the undertone, that he might have done well in school but probably not representative of his actual level, so he could be lower level?

Granted, that could be the case withs some children, but won't the overal achivements in all subject indicates the chid's ability? If you are suggesting that the 4a was probably a fluke, would it be a fluke too that he achieved level 5 in all subjects in first term in year 5? My point is, the level of the child could be judged by his or her level in all other subjects, so that negates subtantially the "random level" theory you just proposed.

Yes, DS is doing creative writing for 11+.

P/S Apology if my own written English is poor though, English is my THIRD language. :-) You can see the number of edits I do in my posts! :0) I know, its an excuse, but just incase you are wondering why my own written English is low level! :-)

_________________
"The only one rehab centre that I long to be in, is the 11+ Rehab Centre" a quote by MSC :-)


Last edited by MSC on Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:37 am, edited 5 times in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 8:15 am 
I can't recommend this book enough. Creative writing for most people is difficult - for a 9 year old impossible sometimes. This book is fantastic for big descriptive 'chunks' as well as lots of other creative writing devices - similes, metaphors etc, that can be ' borrowed', memorised and stop writer's block in its tracks.. I bought it when my son was studying for the 11+ four years ago - and he still uses it now in Year 10.


Top
  
 
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:44 am 
Offline

Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
Posts: 2822
MSC - I genuinely don't think Daogroupie was being negative about your childs SATs level! I think you have completely misread it - I think what DG was referring to was your comment that 4A was the highest level your school could award in Y4. The point is, a school is supposed to "award" the child whatever level they are at, not be restricted by ceilings. Our primary school certainly "awarded" my son a level 5c in his maths in Y4 - the point being, I think, that DG was making that level 4 A is not the highest level that can be given in Y4 but it may be the highest level your school's teachers are happy with giving, possibly because they are not skilled to recognise if your child is working higher than that level, or because they know that they cannot give the value added, (if they award a higher level in Y4) in Y5 and Y6.

DG is absolutely right that the writing SATs is assessed over the whole year - any child can write one or two or more pieces that are stunning but could also write some pretty poor pieces over the year as well - so the SATs grade has to have an element of teacher assessment - certainly the L6 English does, as, where most primary children fall down for L6 is the continuous inference from text at a L6. And it is also true that children can be writing at a different level at home - both my boys wrote amazing fantastical stories on the computer/ipads, when the mood took them - these may not have fitted into the themes or topics they were doing at school, which could be much more regimented. I don't personally feel it is particularly relevant, all the time, to show the teacher the stuff they wrote at home - they did it for fun not to be marked - the ones they were particularly pleased with got sent off to Blue Peter or poetry competitions instead. And DG is also correct that some schools are brilliant at extending children (especially, I find, in Maths) and can, therefore teach them L6 work but can be less good at the English extension stuff that allows them to show, continually, that a child is achieving at a high level (and this sounds like your school!!) Schools can also be very wary when a child is a super high level in their reading but less high in their writing.

My point is, I think you have taken offence at what DG said and feel that it is an attack on your child - I certainly didn't read it as that! And, ps, it wasn't DG that said the book was in the attic gathering dust - it was another poster.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
CALL 020 8204 5060
   
Privacy Policy | Refund Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright © 2004 – 2016