P4 to P5 English Composition
Theme : A Crime & Situational Writing
I recently gave my P5 2018 students the same composition as my P6 students with the theme of A Crime (Picture below). It is always interesting to see how the P4s start to bridge the gap from P4 to P5. Aside from all the new Paper 2 components, Writing is another ‘biggie’.
They will need to extend their Compositions now by adding more details (background / character description / suspense etc). Language becomes more complex and narration must make way for description.
They will need to manage Situational Writing. Most begin by thinking SW will be easy. After all, there is far less to write than a composition piece. However, SW has a number of rules that need to be memorised. Coupled with the fact that teachers in school don’t have the time to give the students many SW pieces to write till their PSLE year, SW can one of those components that pull a student’s marks down.
I’ve also realised that teachers in school have become much stricter in marking SW over the years! Getting full marks now isn’t as easy as it once were. Even small mistakes are penalised quite severely.
Concerned, I prepared my two P5 2017 classes well. We practised SW from November 2016 when they first joined me. I prepared papers with the SW rules for both formal and informal and tested them every time we wrote. If a student did not get 15/15 for the piece, they had to re-write it again!
It seems to have paid off. Almost all my students scored 13-15 for their SA2 SW.
I will start working with my new P5s on SW from next week. Last week and this week we focused on writing,
Below is the Model for the composition on A Crime I was Involved In. I chose this model as this particular student has struggled a little with composition writing. He has been with me since P4 for half a year now. I believe that he has many good ideas but struggles to bring them out in a clear, organised way on paper. I liked his composition on this theme as he had put in the effort to add in suspense and described the flow of action clearly during the 50 minutes I gave them in class.
Of course there were parts missing such as the background of the characters, which he will learn to add in as he matures in P5. He had also missed out bringing the theme at the conclusion. I have bolded the parts that I have added in for him. I have also corrected grammar and spelling mistakes.
“Hey James! Why don’t we rob a bank and steal all the money and jewellery? Then we will be rich!” I quizzed James, my accomplice, who smiled gleefully at me and replied, “We should do that. We are so poor we don’t even have a single coin!”
James and I had been friends since we were young. Both of us were always getting into trouble. We did badly in school and could not find jobs which was why we were in such a sorry state. After we had agreed to rob the Royal Bank we came up with a plan.
As I parked my getaway truck which James had stolen, I thought to myself, Taking money from the bank is going to be a piece of cake.
“Quick! Put on your mask. Next stop, the Royal Bank.” James and I filled our guns with bullets and clicked them in place. We were ready to rob the bank.
“Ready? 3..2..1. go!” James and I sprung into action. We pushed open the door and I shot my gun up to the ceiling while James shouted at the top of his lungs for everyone to freeze. Everyone was shocked and their faces turned white. I told James to stay and watch the customers while I looked for the bank manager. Soon, the manager was found hiding behind the counter and behind him was a vault.
“Hands up!” I shouted, waving my gun at him. The manager and all the bank employees froze in terror. With the gun in my hand, I strolled to the bank manager and smirked, “Well, well, well, you will tell me the password to the vault or else!” The frightened bank manager immediately revealed the code. I tapped in the code, opening the vault. I took all the money I could carry and placed the money in the bag and fled with James.
“Come on, let’s get out of here!” I said as we climbed into the getaway truck. I started the engine but it did not work.
“What is going on? ” I spluttered. To make matters worse, I could hear police sirens. Finally, the engine started and we sped off in the truck, leaving the police cars behind.
“Hooray! Victory! We got the money and…” Our happiness was sucked away when we saw two police cars chasing us. Unfortunately, we lost control of our car and it crashed into a tree and we were arrested. We were sentenced to three years in jail.
I truly regretted my life of crime. James and I never spoke to each other again. I turned over a new leaf and vowed never to be a criminal again.