The story is spilt into 3 parts, The Promise (introduction to characters and the
‘problem’), A Scrapbook of Memories (build-up, climax) and Grand Finales (thrilling rescue, denouement and reflection).
The 25 Chapters contain either action, revelation, reflection or confrontation (some contain several of these elements). When writing their stories, children can use this device. In order to create suspense or so that action paragraphs have more impact, lull the readers into a feeling of calm security, then introduce the element of surprise or obstacle that must be overcome. Before the next challenge the character must face, slow the pace with a paragraph where they reflect on the events or where something is revealed to them.
See resource sheets for RS1 - chapter headings, RS2 - plot outline and blank writing frame, RS3.
• Plot story on blank writing frame after reading book. Discuss in a group which parts of the story go in which part of the framework. Arrive at a consensus with the whole class.
• Write a story synopsis in under 500 words. Then try to reduce this down to 200 words. • Use blank writing frame to structure own story.
Settings within the story change from busy, people-filled settings (such as the fete, the breakfast table, library and the Saturday picnic) to those that provide a contrast and enable the characters to have more personal space for reflection and sanctuary and for revelation (the research room at the library, Grandad’s Den, the graveyard etc.) Some settings reflect the personalities of their occupants (the Den and Dad’s study).
See resource sheet RS4 - settings
What can we tell about each character from the description of their rooms?
Compare Grandad’s and Reverend Posselthwaite’s. How are they similar?
Compare Grandad’s and Dad’s. How are they different?
Creating atmosphere and mood
See resource sheet: RS5 and RS6 – atmosphere and mood
RS 5 could be used by teacher modelling for whole class or for ‘low achieving’ group as…