Whether you agree to whether the test is right or not, the fact is, it is looking very likely children are going to sit it. In my personal opinion, I think if children can demonstrate correct spelling, punctuation and grammar in their writing they clearly know how to use it properly. You can't accidentally spell and punctuate a piece of writing correctly! Either way, SATS preparations will be underway to make sure children are fully prepared to get the best result possible.
Mantle of the Expert SPAG games
Listing different spellings of the word and asking which is the right one.
Writing a sentence with punctuation missing and asking where it needs to go.
Today, I used two apps that did have the children engaged and they were covering aspects of the test in a more interactive and fun way. My worry is that having to teach this material separate from normal literacy lessons can really cripple creativity and the imagination of some and in fact turn them off.
Year 5 using Shake a Phrase app from Davyhulme Primary School on Vimeo.
Although I have yet to use these apps with the Year 6, Year five had fun using the apps ‘Mad Libs‘ and ‘Wordventure,’ two free apps which will have your class in hysterics. Basically the children make some really silly stories by adding examples of nouns, verbs and adjectives. Again this only works properly if children have a sound understanding of these features and the children quickly realise if they have done it right, if their story reads right. It also asks for plurals and specific types of nouns. Some of the texts that we produced had the class in stitches and they all wanted to share their humorous stories without realising that they were furthering their understanding of sentence parts.