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At the end of Year 6, children are expected to achieve the following skills in their writing:


Stage 6



Use further prefixes and suffixes and understand the guidance for adding them

Spell some words with ‘silent’ letters

Continue to distinguish between homophones and other words which are often confused

Use knowledge of morphology and etymology in spelling and understand that the spelling of some words needs to be learnt specifically, as listed in Appendix 1

Use the first 3 or 4 letters of a word to check spelling, meaning or both of these in a dictionary

Use a thesaurus

Handwriting and Presentation


Pupils should be taught to write legibly, fluently and with increasing speed by:

  • Choosing which shape of a letter to use when given choices and deciding whether or not to join specific letters
  • Choosing the writing implement that is best suited for a task




Plan their writing by:

  1. identifying the audience for and purpose of the writing, selecting the appropriate form and using similar writing as models for their own
  2. noting and developing initial ideas, drawing on reading and research where necessary
  3. in writing narratives, considering how authors have developed characters and settings effectively

Draft and write by:

  1. selecting appropriate grammar and vocabulary, understanding how such choices can change and enhance meaning
  2. in narratives, describing settings, characters and atmosphere
  3. integrating dialogue to convey character and advance action
  4. précising longer passages
  5. using a wide range of devices to build cohesion within and across paragraphs including repetition, synonyms and conjunctions
  6. using further organisational and presentational devices to structure text and to guide the reader
  7. use rhetorical questions to draw the reader in.

Evaluate and edit by:

  1. assessing the effectiveness of their own and others’ writing
  2. proposing changes to vocabulary, grammar and punctuation to enhance effects and clarify meaning
  3. ensuring the consistent and correct use of tense throughout a piece of writing
  4. ensuring correct subject and verb agreement when using singular and plural
  5. distinguishing between the language of speech and writing and choose the appropriate register
  6. choosing a publishing format to enhance the text type and engage the reader

Proofread for spelling and punctuation errors

Perform their own compositions, using appropriate intonation, volume, and movement so that meaning is clear.

Vocabulary, grammar & punctuation


develop their understanding of the concepts set out in Appendix 2 by:

  1. recognising vocabulary and structures that are appropriate for formal speech and writing, including subjunctive forms
  2. using passive verbs to affect the presentation of information in a sentence
  3. using the perfect form of verbs to mark relationships of time and cause
  4. using expanded noun phrases to convey complicated information concisely
  5. using modal verbs or adverbs to indicate degrees of possibility
  6. using relative clauses beginning with who, which, where, when, whose, that or with an implied (ie omitted) relative pronoun
  7. learning the grammar for years 5 and 6 in Appendix 2

indicate grammatical and other features by:

  • using commas to clarify meaning or avoid ambiguity in writing
  • using hyphens to avoid ambiguity
  • using brackets, dashes or commas to indicate parenthesis
  • using semicolons, colons or dashes to mark boundaries between independent clauses
  • using a colon to introduce a list
  • punctuating bullet points consistently

Use and understand the grammatical terminology in Appendix 2 accurately and appropriately in discussing their writing and reading.