Theories - Child's Writing

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Kroll's stage of development

Preparation - Up to 6 - Basic motor skills acquired alongside some principles of spelling 

Consolidation - 7/8 - Writing is similar to spoken language (more casual register, unfinished sentences & clauses joined by the conjunction 'and')

Differentation - 9/10 - A stronger understanding of writing for different audiences and purposes is evident and becomes more automatic 

Integration - Mid Teens - 'Personal Voice' in writing, appropriate linguistic choice being made constantly 

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Rothery's categories for evaluating children's lan

Observation/Comment - The writer makes an observation 'I saw a tiger', follows with either an evaluative comment 'it was very large' or mixes these in with the observation 'I saw a very large tiger'.

Recount - Usally a chronological sequences of events. Example - recount of a school trip, which children are often asked to do as a follow up activity. It is written subjectively. The structure often follows a set pattern: Orientation, Event, Reorientation. The orientation sets the scene, perhaps the journey to the place or name. The reorientation at the end of the recount compleates the writing. 

Report - A factual and objective description of events or things; it tends not to be chronological.

Narrative - A story genre where the scene is set for the events to occur and be resolved at the end. It also has a set pattern: Orientation - Complication - Resolution - Coda. The coda, which identifies the point of the story is not always added. Because of the complex structure, few children will achieve the whole structure early on, despite their experience of reading stories that follow this narative structure. 

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Britton's three modes of children's writing

Expressive - 1st mode to develop as it resembles speech. Uses the first person perspective and the content is usally based on personal preferences.

Poetic - Develops gradually, requiring skills in crafting and shaping language, but is encouraged early on because of creativity. Phonological features such as rhyme, rhythm and alliteration as well as descriptive devices such as adjectives and similies are common.

Transactional - Develops last, around secondary school, once children have dissociated speech from writing. It is the style of essays, as it is more impersonal in style and tone. 3rd person is used to create a detached tone. Formal sentence structures and graphological features are used to signpost sections and ideas and structures tend to be chronological. 

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