High Leverage Literacy Tools – CPD


Many thanks to Matt for an excellent CPD session yesterday afternoon.

Here are my top 5 ideas from yesterday’s CPD to include literacy in your lessons and enhance students’ learning:

1. Use classrooms to display key words for your subject. You could create an adjective wall which would help to increase students’ vocabulary and encourage them to use subject-specific terms.

For example in science your adjective wall might contain “reactive, experimental, chemical, molecular, quantitative etc”, in English it could list adjectives to describe characters of a novel or a play.

2. Thesaurus Challenge: students write a paragraph about something they have learnt recently using specific words or phrases in order to improve the quality of their writing

For example in history, students must answer the question “what were the causes of WW1?” and use…

–          gave rise to

–          animosity

–          strained

–          spark

–          enveloped

3. Have I got news for you?


Fun activity to recall prior knowledge and to think about word functions.

answers: Texas, white, sharps

4. Building on root words: how many words can you make adding the following prefixes and suffixes to the root words?

root words

Extension – can you create your own?

Alternative – Give a definition for students to work out.

a)      The fact that Hitler wasn’t a nice man.

b)      Most of the people who apply to go on the X Factor.

c)       The truth wasn’t put across correctly in the case.

d)      Some people like to dress up at the weekend and pretend they’re at the Battle of Bosworth.

answers: understatement, misguided, distorted, re-enactment.

5. Four Corners: as it says! 4 words on the board, one in each corner. Students make a sentence with it.

For example in maths,

4 Corners

See how you could adapt these in your own subject area. They don’t take a long time to plan but definitely have high impact in the classroom.

Thanks Matt for the wealth of ideas.

High Leverage Literacy Tools KS5_Literacy


One response »

  1. Got some great ideas at this CPD session with Matt. Looking forward to using them in my lessons. I particularly liked the four corners one.

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