Drighlington Primary School, Moorland Road, Drighlington, Bradford, West Yorkshire, BD11 1JY

0113 2853000

Drighlington Primary School

Nurturing, supporting, believing, achieving!

Talk for Writing

What is Talk for Writing?

Talk for Writing is an engaging teaching framework developed by Pie Corbett, supported by Julia Strong. It is powerful because it is based on the principles of how children learn. It enables children to imitate the language they need for a particular topic orally, before reading and analysing it, and then writing their own version.

The Talk for Writing approach enables children to read and write independently for a variety of audiences and purposes within different subjects. A key feature is that children internalise the language structures needed to write through ‘talking the text’, as well as close reading. The approach moves from dependence towards independence, with the teacher using shared and guided teaching to develop the ability in children to write creatively and powerfully.


The Talk for Writing sequence follows four stages:

  • The 'cold task' - a baseline assessment to identify key teaching points for the unit and set individual targets.
  • The 'imitation stage' - children learn a model text which includes the key features are sentence structures needed for the genre. This is learned using a ‘text map’ and actions are used to strengthen memory and help students internalise the text.
  • The 'innovation stage' - Once students are familiar with the model text, then the teacher leads them into creating their own versions. A new subject is presented and the teacher leads students through the planning and writing process. 
  • The 'hot task' - children independently apply what has been taught and practised.