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Donny Morrison

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A Writing Root for Our Tower

£5.00 (inc. VAT)

KS: Lower KS2

Year Group: Year 3

Literary Theme: Confidence & Caution

Author(s): Joseph Coelho


Poems, setting descriptions, diary entries, dialogue, letters of thanks

Main Outcome:

Extended fantasy narrative


15 session, 3 weeks

Overview and Outcomes:

This is a three-week Writing Root for Our Tower by Joseph Coelho and Richard Johnson.  The sequence of learning begins with a walk to the local park. Children will be sound collectors and record all the interesting sounds they hear on their way to and in the park. They will go on to analyse the language and word choices used in the text as well as discussing the illustrations. To create their own descriptions and poems, children will use Joseph Coelho’s word choices and phrases to inspire their own writing. They will go on to practise key narrative skills such as creating dialogue, using conjunctions, prepositions and adverbs to build cohesion in their writing. Finally, children use the narrative structure of this poem to create their own fantasy narrative, using a circular planning format. 

Synopsis of Text:

This magical story follows three children living in a tower block, as they embark on a fantastical adventure which helps them see their home in a new light.  A deeply personal story written by multi-award winning poet Joseph Coelho, drawn from his own experience growing up in a tower block and looking for adventure. This story is a celebration of, and a reclaiming of tower blocks as a place where magic and adventure can happen.

It’s a modern-day fable that shows the children of a tower block travelling to a strange, magical world inside a tree and meeting an old man with supernatural powers, only to realise that the magic they’d been looking for had been in their tower all along.  This powerful story is about how society separates ‘urban’ spaces from the countryside, but the reality is that nature is everywhere, and everyone should have access to it. 

Text Rationale:

This magical story, written by influential and award-winning children’s author and poet Joseph Coelho, will show children how to appreciate the things they have. The poetic narrative accompanied by enchanting illustrations will draw children into a fantastical world and provide a springboard for their own lyrical writing.  Touching on themes of conservation and nature, links can also be drawn with geography and science and the book will act as a portal into the poetical world of this significant author.  

Links and themes:

Town, countryside, nature, belonging, appreciation of what you have, magic, nature, living spaces

Date written: January 2023

A Spelling Seed is available for Our Tower.

Spelling Seed Overview:


This is a three-session spelling seed for the book Our Tower by Joseph Coelho.  Below is the coverage from Appendix 1 of the National Curriculum 2014.

Spelling Seeds have been designed to complement Writing Roots by providing weekly, contextualised sequences of sessions for the teaching of spelling that include open-ended investigations and opportunities to practise and apply within meaningful and purposeful contexts, linked (where relevant) to other areas of the curriculum and a suggestion of how to extend the investigation into home learning.

There is a Spelling Seed session for every week of the associated Writing Root.


Word List Words

remember, special, fruit, different, group, heard, thought, guard, disappear

Spelling Rules and Patterns

The suffix -ly

Possessive apostrophes with plural words

View Our Tower Spelling Seed

Literary Leaves within the same Literary Theme

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