Igcse

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tweakit resource guide

The Assassin
KS4 > GCSE > Creative Writing 2 > The Assassin

How it works

This is an oven-ready resource, great for producing effective writing from students because it’s short, simple and elegantly structured. Students follow the instructions and – bingo! – come up with a piece of original prose.
However, it has become so well-liked by teachers that exam boards have commented on its popularity as a piece of GCSE coursework, expressing concern about its ‘very limiting framework’ (Edexcel) and
‘questionable content’ (AQA) (see the AQA A Examiners’ Report for June
2006 and the Edexcel Examiners’ Report for Summer 2007). Here are some ideas to take it further.

Try this!

Do read the Teacher Notes at the start of the resource – they contain a number of great ideas to spice up the activity and develop learning.

Or this!

Get students to complete their own paragraph plans for a tense, atmospheric narrative. Use the given plan for ‘The Assassin’ to establish the requirements of a successful plan i.e. simple three-stage plot; few characters; logical, cohesive structure etc.

Or this!

Display the paragraph from sheet 1 describing the character (beginning ‘He shuffled forward …’) on the board. Get pupils in turn to underline / highlight the most expressive words and phrases (start off by focusing on adjectives and adverbs, then look at verbs and key nouns). Then get everyone to rewrite the paragraph, substituting the words marked to change the tone of the piece completely. Turn it into the opening of a love story, perhaps!

Or this!

Having looked at sheet 1 with the class, provide them with a version of the sheet which has all the examples particular to ‘The Assassin’ deleted (see the example, plot character and setting SHEET 1a, below). Ask pupils to recreate the worksheet with a new title (The Rescuer?…...

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