This lesson is based on classroom practice that has been proven, by research, to work.

Familiar Settings Upper + PDF + Word


Save 25% when you buy all 11 lessons in this series:

  1. Nailing a Setting 
  2. It’s Midnight and it’s Raining 
  3. Super Settings 
  4. Shifting Settings 
  5. Settings Across Genres
  6. Using Conjunctions Without Fear 
  7. Writing a Mystery Story 
  8. Mystery Stories and Powerful Verbs 
  9. Features of a Mystery Story 
  10. Christmas Setting 
  11. Settings in Different Genres


The Familiar Settings (Upper) series consists of 11 engaging lessons for Year 5 and 6 students that integrate the teaching of core English literacy skills with the development of vital evidence-based learning (EBL) competencies. Each lesson is carefully designed to not only advance students’ comprehension and creative writing abilities but also to foster crucial EBL skills like independent learning, collaboration, thinking skills, and self-assessment.

With their emphasis on delivering high-quality English lessons alongside the intentional development of invaluable EBL abilities, these Familiar Settings lessons are a valuable addition to any upper KS2 teaching toolkit. The perfect combination of literacy skills and evidence-based learning strategies!

Lesson 1 – Nailing a Setting: This introductory lesson unpacks the key features of story settings, helping students identify and analyse elements like place, time period, and weather. Collaborative activities encourage peer teaching and reinforce learning.

Lesson 2 – It’s Midnight and It’s Raining: Students dive deeper into setting descriptors, exploring how writers use them for different purposes across genres. The focus on higher and lower order questioning builds thinking competencies.

Lesson 3 – Super Settings: This lesson examines the typical settings for various genres while integrating EBL skills like peer teaching, collaboration, thinking skills, and peer assessment. A CPD segment covers peer teaching strategies.

Lesson 4 – Shifting Settings: Students analyse the reasons why a story’s setting may change over the course of the narrative. EBL skills like collaboration, thinking skills, peer teaching, and self-assessment are incorporated.

Lesson 5 – Settings Across Genres: This immersive project guides students through settings in pirate tales, sci-fi, fantasy, and traditional stories. EBL skills such as independent learning, thinking skills, and self-regulation are developed.

Lesson 6 – Using Conjunctions without Fear: The nuanced use of conjunctions is explored through activities that build thinking skills, self-assessment abilities, and independent learning competencies. 

Lesson 7 – Writing a Mystery Story: Students craft gripping mystery narratives while practising descriptive writing techniques like using vivid verbs and varying sentence lengths. Self and peer assessment activities are included.

Lesson 8 – Mystery Stories and Powerful Verbs: This lesson dives into using powerful verbs and strategic sentence construction to create suspense in mystery writing. EBL skills like independent learning, collaboration, thinking skills, and peer assessment are fostered.

Lesson 9 – Features of a Mystery Story: Through collaborative activities, students explore the key characteristics of mystery stories while developing thinking skills, peer assessment abilities, and independent learning.

Lesson 10 – Merry Christmas: A festive-themed lesson in which comprehension skills are combined with EBL competencies like self-assessment, peer assessment, and self-regulation.

Lesson 11 – Genres, Settings and All That: This immersive project has students explore settings across different genres while practising inference, vocabulary, and story analysis. EBL skills like metacognition and independent learning are embedded.

These 8 skills are the EBL skills developed across these Familiar Settings (Upper) lessons. Click on each skill to learn more about that skill.

  1. Collaboration
  2. Thinking Skills
  3. Peer Assessment
  4. Peer Teaching
  5. Self-Assessment
  6. Metacognition
  7. Self-Regulation
  8. Independent Learning


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Familiar Settings Upper + PDF + Word