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St. Francis de Sales Catholic Junior School

Non Excidet



Developing skilled, independent writers is at the core of our writing process.  


The first lesson of each topic is a writing baseline and the final lessons involve the pupils completing and editing their own independent writing pieces. This enables us (and the children) to review the progress made by comparing these writing pieces. 


From Baseline to Final Independent Writing Piece

Narrative: 'Beowulf' Story

"Even though my writing has improved a lot since Year 4, it is important to have a 'Non Excidet' mindset and always try to improve your writing. Here, you can see that my second piece has a lot more detail, multi-clause sentences that start in different ways and my vocabulary has improved too. Reading Michael Morpurgo's version of 'Beowulf' assisted this as I stole some of the ambitious words that he uses e.g. 'perilous' and 'fiend'. Looking back at my baseline really helps me to see how much progress I have made in such a short amount of time." Rubi

Persuasive Writing: 'Julius Caesar' Speech

"My favourite topic this year was when we studied Julius Caesar and learnt about William Shakespeare. When we wrote our persuasive speech in the shoes of Brutus, I liked learning how to use extended animal metaphors – in my speech I even used some quotes from the play too. I’m really proud of this piece of work; it’s definitely my best piece from this year so far!" Callum

Recount Writing: Diary Entry – 'Small Things' Wordless Picture Book Inferences

"My diary entry shows lots of progress because in my final draft, I started to focus on using cursive flicks at the start of new words with lower case letters. I also learnt about using idioms during the topic and extended fronted adverbials, so I made sure to include examples of these in my final piece of writing. Overall, I really enjoyed this topic because you could be as creative and imaginative as you liked due to the fact that it based on a completely wordless picture book. Therefore, making use of my own inferences was key." Lola

Recount Writing: Newspaper Report – Suffragette Focus

"Looking at my final independent newspaper report, I've really improved my use of paragraphing. I have also used some of the Y5/6 statutory words and included more sentence types. Additionally, I have used a good headline; whereas in my baseline, I did not even include one." Lottie

Independent Writing at Home


Competitions offer the chance for pupils to apply their writing skills independently beyond the classroom. From BBC's 500 words stories to Young Writers Competitions; national writing contests with the University of Liverpool to writing newspaper articles for Tim Quinn...

Take a look at some of our entries below...