Skip to content
Board of Studies New South Wales

Educational Resources

Board of Studies NSW

  1. Home
  2. Parents
  3. Writing in K-6
Print this page Reduce font size Increase font size

Supporting your child's learning – Writing in K-6

Other parent information -
Supporting your child's learning -
Reading in K-6
Spelling in K-6
Talking and Listening in K-6
Writing in K-6

Reading and writing are closely connected. When children learn to read and write, they learn how literary and factual texts are written for different purposes and different audiences. In writing, children learn about the structure and grammar of written language as well as learning about handwriting and spelling.

Stage 1 – In Kindergarten to Year 2 children learn gradually to:


  • hold a pencil correctly

  • trace letters and words

  • copy letters and words

  • form letters of the alphabet correctly

  • write using a variety of pencils, crayons, pens and textas

  • write on a variety of surfaces such as paper cardboard, sand, chalkboard


  • recognise that words are separated by spaces

  • write their first name and surname

  • attempt to write letters and words with teacher assistance

  • use books, words and letters as models for their writing

  • write one or more sentences

  • attempt to use punctuation

  • write lists, messages, descriptions, stories, greeting cards, invitations and thank you letters, stories, poems, diaries

  • write letters, instructions, recounts and recipes

  • explore the use of word processors.

Stage 2 – In Years 3 to 4 children learn gradually to:


  • use the conventional letter shapes and ways of linking letters in their handwriting activities


  • use other texts as models for writing, eg poems, recipes, lists, charts

  • use some punctuation markers accurately in their own writing

  • recognise the structure and grammar of a variety of texts, eg newspapers, diaries, journals, stories

  • write a variety of literary and factual texts, eg stories, recounts, procedures

  • participate in class writing of a variety of texts, eg reports, poems

  • adapt texts for different audiences and different purposes, eg letter to a friend or Member of Parliament

  • revise or redraft writing for publication

  • use editing functions on word processors when writing, revising and redrafting.

Stage 3 – In Years 5 to 6 children learn gradually to:


  • develop a legible and fluent handwriting style


  • consistently use correct punctuation

  • use the structure and grammar of a variety of texts

  • effectively sequence ideas in writing

  • write a variety of literary texts such as narratives, poems and plays

  • write a variety of factual texts such as exposition, explanation, information report, procedure, recount and discussion

  • write a detailed description of a person, place or thing

  • write humorous adaptations of standard texts to amuse or entertain readers

  • record information from a variety of sources before writing

  • summarise and make notes

  • use redrafting, revising, editing, proofreading and publishing keep a learning log and

  • or journal to record what they have learnt

  • draft and edit text on a word processor.

When children begin to write they enjoy making marks and scribbles on paper. After a while they start to write some of the letters and sounds of the alphabet. They learn to write words. Eventually they learn to write sentences and are able to create a variety of texts.

How can you help your child at home?

  • make writing experiences at home fun for you and your child

  • write in front of your child and discuss what you are writing, eg shopping lists, cards, letters and notes

  • talk about the different purposes and audiences for writing

  • encourage your child to use a variety of paper for drawing and writing

  • encourage your child to use pens, pencils, crayons, chalk and textas for writing

  • encourage your child to draw and to write about their drawing

  • praise your child for 'having a go' at writing words that are new to them

  • encourage your child to write messages for you and other family members

  • help your child to find little words in big words and to write them, eg carpet: car, pet, are, care, tar

  • encourage your child to write cards and invitations, and letters to friends, relatives, neighbours, school teachers

  • encourage your child to write signs, poems, favourite recipes and instructions

  • encourage your child to label things that they design and make

  • play word games such as 'I Spy', 'Scrabble', 'Boggle', 'Scattegories', 'Junior Pictionary'

  • encourage your child to use a word processor or typewriter if available

  • display paintings, drawings and writing that your child brings home from school

  • encourage your child to develop their own photo album and encourage them to write labels for their photos

  • encourage your child to keep a scrap book or photo album for putting in pictures and writing

  • encourage your child to keep a diary and to write in it whenever possible

  • encourage your child to write in the NSW Foundation Style Writing:

If your child is having difficulty with their handwriting, spelling or writing, ask your child's teacher for help.

For further information contact:

Board of Studies NSW
GPO Box 5300, Sydney NSW 2001
Tel: (02) 9367 8111 Fax: (02) 9262 6270

Resources available from the Board of Studies Sales Desk (02) 9367 8178

Print this page Reduce font size Increase font size