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Can Hamilton Help You Train Your Dragon?

claire-field.jpg By Claire Field

'How to Train Your Dragon' by the UK's new Children's Laureate, Cressida Cowell, makes a brilliant starting point for your Year 4 class to explore plot, character, setting, style, descriptive writing and using fronted adverbials to build tension in writing.

Hamilton's Year 4 'Fantasy' block gives you the chance to teach comprehension, composition and SPaG in the context of the hugely engaging and funny How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell, the UK's 2019-21 children's laureate.

The block's 6 units can be taught as a long sequence, or can provide the basis for you to select particular objectives that you want to teach.

Unit 1 (core) introduces How to Train Your Dragon's setting, style and characters. Consider the inclusion of images and additional texts within the story. Examine some of the unusual language and discuss ways to tackle unfamiliar words. Make predictions and then find out what happens next.

Unit 2 (SPaG) gives you materials to study pronouns and descriptive writing, culminating in a fun poster-writing activity that gives children the chance to have a go themselves. A slide presentation makes it easy to present the grammar.

Unit 3 (SPaG) covers the punctuation of direct speech and uses role play to make this skill contextual and useful. Use our ready-made slide presentation to present the grammar.

Unit 4 (comprehension) explores text analysis and plot-mapping. It concludes with a chance for children to use reading to inspire their own writing.

Unit 5 (SPaG) shows how fronted adverbials can help with building tension in writing. A slide presentation makes it easy to present the grammar.

Unit 6 (composition) provides an extended writing opportunity in which children write a new ending for the book. Use this unit to consolidate all of the units, or teach it on its own.

Explore Hamilton's Year 4 English Fantasy block all around How To Train Your Dragon.