Series Name



Watch our short video to see how it all fits together.


You can also try our online evaluation siteto learn more about Skills for Writing.


Course components 

Skills for Writing is a unique digital, print and training solution, developed in partnership with Professor Debra Myhill and her team from the University of Exeter. It embeds the principles of the Grammar for Writing pedagogy - trialled and proven to accelerate progress in writing significantly.



ActiveLearn combines front-of-class teaching resources, planning materials and homework, practice and support to assist teachers and improve learner outcomes.

The service is backed up with support throughout your subscription (plus, in-house training is also available) to ensure you and your learners get the most out of the course. An ActiveLearn subscription also includes the Teacher Guide, mentioned below.

Download our guide to the ActiveLearn preview site.


Front-of-class teaching and planning resources

ActiveLearn supports teachers in embedding the core principles of Grammar for Writing in their front-of-class teaching.AT Witches screen shot 300113

 supports teachers in embedding the core principles of in their front-of-class teaching.
  • Provides the Student Book on screen with a wealth of resources, including videos, digital grammar activities, weblinks, PowerPoints and worksheets.
  • Includes powerful functionality enabling you to add your own resources, make annotations and customise your ActiveLearn space.

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Homework Practice and Support Service

The Homework Practice and Support Service for Skills for Writing provides students with online access to the Student Books with ActiveBook and a range of online homework activities through ActiveCourse.

for provides students with online access to the Student Books with ActiveBook and a range of online homework activities through ActiveCourse.
  • AL screenshot 300113Digital homework activities allow students to consolidate and test their understanding of the grammar features that have been focused on in class.
  • Independent writing activities encourage students to practise writing and then reflect on the language choices they have made.

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Teacher Guide (included in ActiveLearn)

This digital, fully-editable Teacher Guide contains detailed lesson plans which guide teachers through all the units, showing how to use the resources and embed the pedagogy effectively. It also helps teachers to develop their own grammatical knowledge by providing content from Cybergrammar (comes free with the Teacher Guide) to support learning and understanding of the grammatical focus of the lessons.


Try these free lesson plans:

Unit 2: Writing the world, lesson 4

Unit 4: Spy fiction, lesson 5



Created by Debra Myhill and her team at Exeter University to help teachers develop their own grammatical knowledge, Cybergrammar is hosted on ActiveTeach and comes free with purchases of the Skills for Writing ActiveTeach Presentation and Teacher Guide products. It provides information on a range of grammatical features to support understanding and interactive self-tests to put this learning into practice and test grammatical knowledge.


Student Books (pack of 3)

W250_CoversThree full-colour Student Books each contain two of the six units of work, making it easy to use different units with different year groups. Extracts from real texts encourage students to explore the choices made by writers and to experiment with creating these effects in their own writing.


Student book 1

Unit 1 'Alter Egos' explores texts such as The WitchesFlip and Twilight. It looks at how the authors of these texts create pace and tension, engage the reader and use narrative voice and viewpoint to portray a sense of a split identity.  

Unit 2 'Writing the World' looks at how people write about the world of nature in documentaries and environmental campaigns to understand how nature is described and presented in popular media.

Try free lessons from this book:

Unit 1: 'Alter Egos', Lesson 11 - Emphasising Meaning.

Unit 2: 'Writing the World, Lesson 3 - Describing Nature by Using Comparisons.


Student Book Units 3 and 4

Unit 3 'Spy Fiction' explores the elements that make an engaging spy story, developing language skills in order to entertain and thrill the reader.  

Unit 4 'Explain' looks at how to write to inform and explain for different audiences by exploring some of the unusual activities some people carry out in their spare time.  

Try free lessons form this book:

Unit 3: 'Spy Fiction', Lesson 3 - Pace and Threat.

Unit 4: 'Explain', Lesson 5 - Building Up Your Sentences.


Student Book Units 5 and 6

Unit 5 'News writing' looks at the key features of newspaper reports, how language choices can be made to imply a point of view and influence the reader’s opinion and how to condense large amounts of information.

Unit 6 'Dystopia' uses texts such as 1984Animal Farm and Brave New World, as well as more recent novels such as The Hunger Games and Gone. It looks at how the authors of these novels create settings and histories for their dystopias and helps students to create their own dystopias to build a sense of fear within their readers.

Try free lessons form this book:

Unit 5: News Writing, Lesson 2 - Hitting the Headlines.

Unit 6: Dystopia, Lesson 2 - Imperfect Perfection.

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