Recently, I had a go at having some more soulful writing in lessons. I asked my Year 7 class to write a blog entry about some 'One Direction' news. They could make up the news, but it had to be interesting. They could decide whether they were positive or negative. The result was hilarious as the girls were excited to tell us some gossip about Niall or what ever he is called. The boys, and the occasional girl with taste, responded with these sarcastic news blogs about the band's inability to sing. The group connected and produced some interesting and varied writing, and not a single tick list in sight. For my sins, I'd read a hundred spoof news blogs, than thirty 'beige' pieces of work that have the same features, content and sentence openings, because they had a tick list. I want them to think and articulate their thoughts effectively. Not produce the same piece as everyone else.