Visit Pobble

The Pobble blog

How to extend children’s vocabulary throughout school

  • by: Charlotte Smythe
  • On: 24, Mar 2021
36 min read

Over the past few years there has been huge progression in the way in which Pobble 365 is used at Richmond Academy. 
It first began inspiring minds in my own EYFS classroom where I experienced first-hand the awe and wonder it created amongst the children. Our daily Pobble sessions inspired all children to talk and in my previous blog I discuss in detail the way in which I use the resource in EYFS.

However, since the original blog, Pobble 365 truly has exploded and it is now promoted throughout the key stages at Richmond Academy! Not only is Pobble 365 used daily in the EYFS to stimulate high-quality talk, but it is now used throughout the school to support and extend children’s vocabulary and writing. Teachers are using it in their own innovative ways, but at the same time, the resource is used consistently to promote talk within the classroom. We have been able to use Pobble 365 to support and extend children’s academic spoken language whilst developing their use and understanding of rich vocabulary. As a result, this has positively impacted the children’s writing.

We now use Pobble 365 in a variety of ways but they are often chosen to link with a relevant theme of learning for the week. The images are placed in a special place, whether that be the class photo frame, a special jar or even at a conversation station. Teachers are being very creative in the way in which they deliver the week’s photo. 

Many classes also share the daily Pobble 365 photo as part of their snack time each day. One teacher explains how this has positively impacted her children:

“We use the Pobble 365 photos as a stimulus for talk during break times. We always start with “I can see…” then “I think…” and finally “ I wonder…” promoting them to think of questions with the I wonder statement. I have found that it has enabled the children to think of much more thought provoking questions as well as expanding their vocabulary. I find it fascinating to hear what the children come up with and it gives a superb insight into what the children already know and their interests.” 
KS1 Teacher 

Children’s use of language is always celebrated in the classroom and this is something we place at the heart of everything we do! Many classes have adopted the ‘word basket’ which was discussed in my original blog.

This is a really simple and easy way of celebrating the rich level of vocabulary children use when discussing the photos. The children’s own words are re-discussed regularly through exploring the definitions of the words or by adding the words to their own writing. Many teachers believe that this has developed the children’s ability to express their ideas but also understand the meaning behind the words they are using.

“Using Pobble 365 provides us with ‘time to talk’ and allows us to generate lots of discussion. This discussion of ideas or even words used by the children has significantly developed the children’s use and understanding of vocabulary.” 
KS2 class teacher

‘Time to Talk’ is integral to our whole school ethos and we believe it to be the true foundation of learning. So, not only is talk celebrated within the classroom but also throughout school, which can be seen through corridor displays and even through regular ‘talk homework’.

Through regular ‘Pobble 365’ discussions, children become confident at sharing their ideas. The inspiring photos always ignite a spark and capture the children’s engagement. Through these high levels of engagement and whole class discussions, children have a wealth of ideas and are then excited to write. Many classes have created their own ‘Pobble Books’ that children enjoy writing in!

Many classes will use the photos to not only stimulate talk but to create thought provoking questions that they can explore with their peers. These open ended discussions occur regularly throughout school but here is an example from a year 6 class:

As a school we will continue to develop the way in which we use Pobble 365 in the classroom, innovating with our own practice to further enhance children’s vocabulary and writing. Until then, I believe that every classroom and every child deserves the ‘time to talk’ and with the help of Pobble 365 this can be nurtured and achieved from Early Years all the way to Year 6.

About Pobble

Pobble provides exciting daily writing resources to inspire your young writers. You'll find incredible images with ready-made writing activities that engage and motivate your class, 365 days a year. Teachers, get started here.

Have you discovered Pobble yet?

Access a free inspiring image, story starter and short burst writing activities, every day! Engage and motivate even your most reluctant writers.

Visit Pobble