Primary Writing – The Railway Children

A film extract provides writing inspiration for KS2 pupils An extract from this classic family film based on the book by E. Nesbitt provides an opportunity for KS2 children to write their own dramatic story about bravery. The film extract is interspersed with Y5/6 pupils talking, which can usefully provide a model for classroom discussion. The children set the scene, talk about the character they most identify with and weigh up what they would have done in similar circumstances.

The story is set at the beginning of the 20th century. Roberta, Peter and Phyllis witness a landslide in the railway cutting which blocks the track. Peter remembers that the 11.29 is only minutes away ? there?s going to be a terrible accident if they don?t come up with a plan to stop the train. The children use the girls? red flannel petticoats as warning flags, but they have to stand on the track to bring the train to a halt in the nick of time. We suggest teachers also discuss risk-taking and health and safety issues.

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