Frequently Asked Questions
Is Mighty Writer available now?
Mighty Writer was launched at the Education Show at the NEC 17-19th March 2016. You can order Mighty Writer direct from our website. ORDER NOW
Can I buy other themed images?
Mighty Writer comes with a large range of images to fire children’s imaginations. However, there are also “themed” packs of images available covering different topics and genres to suit all interests and motivate young writers. They are colour coded to their accompanying mat. It is also possible to mix and match toolbars making it possible to intertwine ideas and themes and encourage creative thinking.
As a teacher/parent, where do I learn to use Mighty Writer?
When you purchase Mighty Writer you will have access to videos in our Teacher Zone showing you how to use Mighty Writer. There is a also a short video on our homepage explaining the main ways Mighty Writer can be used.
My son is 5 and is really struggling at school with his writing? Would I be able to help him use it?
Mighty Writer allows teachers or parents to model each stage of the writing process. Using the space on the mat, children can lay out images, connecting them by arrows to form simple stories. They can then move onto putting their story into sentences, using the sentence mats. You can talk your child through each stage until they become more confident, helping them to use conjunctions, images and punctuation. Support your child by encouraging them to retell the tale until they know their story by heart. When they have used Mighty Writer a few times they can begin to record their stories, using either the mat as a point of reference or their own plans based on the Mighty Writer format, helping them recall the story as they write. An accompanying booklet will talk through the many different ways you can use Mighty Writer to enable your child to become confident planning and recording their ideas.
I teach in a primary school and our curriculum content is already planned. How does it link with my current planning?
Mighty Writer complements your current planning and allows you to teach what you have already planned in a simple and effective way. Themed and topic based image packs link to current planning to allow you to retell known stories, plan and edit recounts and create new stories. It actively encourages talk and you can use Mighty Writer to focus on modelling the beginning, middle and end of stories. It allows you to focus solely on sentence work or developing character and setting and linking ideas. You can use it with the whole class, groups or individuals to focus on specific areas you want to develop. You can adapt the toolbars to focus on certain conjunctions and types of punctuation. Once the planning and editing stage is completed you can model writing the story, talking the children through the process of following their plan.
Why is Mighty Writer more effective if used in each year group?
Mighty Writer is designed to support each stage of the process of learning to write, from retelling, planning, editing and creating. It develops children’s ability to speak in sentences and teaches them how sentences and story structure are created.
If used from Reception, children can use Mighty Writer to create stories at their level, from just using images to creating increasingly complex sentences and story structure. Used in each class, it provides consistency of approach that can be built on year by year.
If used regularly, children are increasingly aware of all the elements that they need to include in their writing. The accompanying Mighty Writer plans allow them to work independently and include these things in their writing.
The teacher is able to choose what elements of the mat the children will use, by providing the conjunctions, number of images and type of punctuation the children have access to. The children feel they have complete ownership of it and the teacher can organise how they will use it, to model, demonstrate or allow children to participate or use independently.
I teach reception children. Are they too young to use mighty Writer?
Mighty Writer is an excellent resource for young children to help them begin to engage with and enjoy the processes that lead to becoming a confident writer. The resource is based on the use of images and symbols with an emphasis on talk. The mat is tactile and fascinating for children to interact with. Teachers can just focus on teaching children to retell and create stories practically until they are ready to begin to record. Teachers can tailor the use of the mat to suit the needs of all learners. Children can learn at their own pace and trials in schools have shown it has an excellent impact on their understanding and progress.
My 6 year old daughter is very gifted, but she is getting bored at school. Will it engage her?
Mighty Writer encourages children to extend their thinking and think creatively about their writing. Using the wide range of images children can create and edit their stories and - either independently or with support - think about sentence and story structure and how this can be made increasingly complex for different effects. The use of blank tiles allows children to incorporate any of their own words or images so there is no restriction to their imagination and flow of thought. The story maps allow children to plan at length and in as much detail as they wish. The emphasis on images and symbols aids recall and consolidates learning as children rehearse and retell.
I am a Primary teacher at a school with a high percentage of EAL. Will they benefit from Mighty Writer?
Mighty Writer is a fantastic resource to use with children who have English as an additional language as they benefit from the visual and kinaesthetic approach. Through regular exposure to and use of this resource they can visualise stories and actively see and participate in retelling and creating. They can communicate their ideas and level of understanding by moving the images and symbols. It supports them in beginning to use key words and phrases. Teachers can demonstrate and model the different steps in creating sentences and building story structure.
I am a Year 2 teacher with some very confident writers. Will this resource challenge and extend them?
Mighty Writer can be used within a class to target specific groups of pupils and focus on the development of different skills. When planning next steps for the more able children, you can actively demonstrate and model increasingly sophisticated skills. It is easy to talk through the editing process and model making changes to create certain effects. Children are actively engaged and involved. Encourage children to find different ways to structure sentences and use sentence openers and conjunctions. They can use their own story maps to practice and consolidate these skills, until they become increasingly confident at critiquing their own writing.
I am a teacher of Year 1 children. I am really interested, but does it conflict with other learning resources I use?
Mighty writer is compatible with other teaching strategies you use and these can be incorporated into your use of it in the classroom. It allows you to have all you need in one place allowing you the option of what you include in your teaching and keeping it simple for both you and the children.