Autumn Term is Knocking at the Door

Summer has been as much wonderful fun for Chelsea Young Writers as ever, with an all-time high number of courses and classes running. We’ve enjoyed every moment, and once again we must thank our attendees and their supporters for making every session both a joy and a learning curve all at once. The autumn term will soon be upon us, so we wanted to take this opportunity to highlight the term-time fun we have in store at Chelsea Young Writers…

My First Story

Our newest workshop format, My First Story has been a resounding success. My First Story is aimed at Years 1 and 2, and its primary goal is to ignite a real passion for story-telling in the young writers who join in. In these workshops young writers will experience dynamic learning styles which include performing and aural story-telling alongside written work in order to introduce them to the key elements of building a story. Each week the children listen to a story which inspires their own retellings, whilst they consider how the author makes us engaged in the tale, and the message that they might be trying to convey – as a result, children start to develop their critical eye for writing, making these writing workshops ideal for those taking the 7+ exam. My First Story runs after school at St John’s Notting Hill on a Monday, and at our Saturday Clubs in Richmond, Swiss Cottage, Chelsea, Notting Hill and Marylebone.

Hone Your Writing Basics

Hone Your Writing Basics is ideal for children in Years 3 and 4 who are aiming for a solid understanding of story-craft from start to end. In these sessions, young writers are guided through writing devices and techniques which will help them write with both consistency and flair, creating well thought out plots and compelling characters to enact them. This course is an ideal extension to KS2 learning, allowing children to identify and focus on areas for improvement under an expert’s eye, all the while being encouraged to write for enjoyment alongside likeminded peers. A key part of Hone Your Writing Basics is responding to writing prompts or a brief under timed conditions, allowing them to regularly practice working creatively within time-limits in a friendly environment  – we find this to be a great way of getting rid of exam nerves. Hone Your Writing Basics only runs on a Tuesday after school at St John’s Notting Hill, so there really is no other course like it for students in Years 3 and 4!

Master Your Creative Writing

In Master Your Creative Writing sessions, young writers work towards creating two extended stories across the course of the term in response to a theme. This Autumn they will be getting inspired by Rewriting Shakespeare! For the first five weeks, children will be responding to ‘The Blood Feud’ as they retell Romeo and Juliet from their own unique perspective, and after half term they will spend another 5 weeks writing a modern-day mystery inspired by ‘Murder at Macbeth Castle’. The Master Your Creative Writing course requires writers to be able to plan out more complex plots and character-arcs with confidence, and as such is recommended to children in Years 4, 5 and 6. These sessions are in high demand and often over-subscribed, so book early! You can join us after school at the Hampshire School or Swiss Cottage on a Monday, or St John’s Notting Hill on a Thursday. Alternatively, you can find Master Your Creative Writing at our Saturday Clubs in Chelsea and Richmond.

Editing – Write and Revise

We believe you won’t find another programme like our Editing course in London – it is truly unique approach for children in Years 4, 5 and 6 to improve their writing! The ultimate training in critical thinking, reading and writing, young editors start off by analysing extracts of well-loved children’s novels, including proofreading deliberately erroneous sections for errors in spelling, punctuation and grammar. Reflecting on the devices used by classic authors in order to captivate their readers, the children then go on to produce their own tale using what they have learnt to inspire their writing style. All the while, young editors will be self and peer critiquing with methods they have applied to professional authors in order to ensure their own work is held to pristine standards! We find that this style of working not only sets children well above their peers at KS2, but is a fantastic introduction to the levels of critical thinking expected at KS3 study. You can only find this course at our Notting Hill Saturday Club, so be sure to book well in advance!

11+ Preparation

Whilst all of our courses are designed with entrance exams and generally timed ‘writing-tasks’ in mind, our 11+ english exam preparation course provides an intense course aimed specifically for those taking the often intimidating exam! In these sessions, children in Years 5 and 6 work with an experienced 11+ tutor to get a better understanding of not only the exam itself, but their own strengths and weaknesses when tackling it. Weekly timed writing exercises ensure that writing under timed conditions is not only familiar but a fun challenge, and breakdowns of question styles and approaches means that children will be prepared for the various types of comprehension and writing questions that may come their way on the big day! Ultimately, however, young writers will learn far beyond simply passing the test itself – they will come out as compelling story-tellers and critical readers. Term-time 11+ preparation occurs at our Saturday Clubs in Notting Hill, Swiss Cottage, Richmond and Marylebone.