Forestdale Primary School

Believe - Aspire - Excel


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Lesson 1

LI: To be able to write a character description

In today's lesson, you will be using summaries of some of the characters from Warhorse to focus on creating a clear, descriptive character summary of a chosen character. 

  • Read through the examples of summaries of characters
  • Identify the important information about the character
  • Then create your own character description of your chosen character from the novel
  • It is important that you use descriptive language to make the personality, appearance and role of your character in the story clear.

Lesson 2

LI: I can predict the end to a story.

Read through Chapters 15 and 16 of Warhorse. Joey is still involved in the war at this point in the story. Your task today is going to be to use what you know of the story to predict what will happen to Joey next. 

  • As you read the chapters, what factual information can you retrieve about the war? For example: that tanks were a British invention and used in September 1916. 
  • It is now your challenge to decide on the prediction that you believe is most likely to happen and write a paragraph explaining what your predicted ending is and justifying why you think this ending is the most likely.
  • Refer back to what you know from the story so far and what we can infer from the character’s actions and feelings at this point in the story.

  • Start your paragraph with one of these phrases:

    I believe that…

    I predict that…

    I think that…

Lesson 3

LI: To be able to create a historical guide

Within Warhorse, Michael Morpurgo has had to navigate potential historical pitfalls as he writes. This means creating a gripping book whilst also not changing history. There is a reason why he couldn't mention tanks at the beginning of the war - they hadn't been invented yet!

  • Today you will be conducting research, like Michael Morpurgo had to do, in order to help us understand the context of the story and to develop our own writing by using this contextual information to underpin our own stories.
  • Your task is to create a guide for writers of historical stories to help them when it comes to avoiding anachronisms and using historically accurate material to underpin their story.
  • What to research: 

¡1. What were popular names in that time period?

¡2. What clothes did people wear?

¡3. What sort of jobs/occupations did people have?

¡4.  What did they do in their leisure time?

¡5. What sort of homes did they live in?

¡6. What technology did they have?

¡7. What did men do? What did women do? What were children’s daily lives like?

  • Bullet point the key information you find under separate subheadings.


Lesson 4

LI: I can write authentic sounding dialogue.

  • Consider the terms 'authentic' and 'dialogue'. What do you think they mean?
  • Dialogue is the use of speech in a written context. What is important to remember when using dialogue? Can you think of some rules?

1. Punctuate dialogue through inverted commas "" and end it with a full stop, question mark, comma or exclamation mark. 

2. Use a capital letter for the start of speech.

3. Use a reporting clause to add detail as to how it was spoken, shouted or whispered. 

4. When introducing a new speaker in the same paragraph as speech, you must start an entirely new line. 

  • Authentic is when something is true or reliable. In this lesson, this means that you are trying to write dialogue in the manner that it would have been said in the past. 


  • Choose two characters from the story Warhorse and create a roleplay between the two characters (a discussion or disagreement). Use the rules above to create this. You should try and use appropriate register, contractions and question tags to make your dialogue appear authentic. 

Lesson 5

LI: I can compare different versions of War Horse.

  • Warhorse is not just a book that we can read. Warhorse also exists as a film and a theatre production. Have you heard or seen either of the other versions?
  • How do you think the theatre production would portray Joey and Topthorn? 
  • Watch the trailer for the theatre production on the link below:


  • We are now going to watch two short clips from the film, Warhorse.

As you watch them consider: 

  • Can you spot any differences between the film and the book? There are differences in all parts of the story!
  • Is there a narrator?
  • Is the story the same in the clips with the sections of the book that we have read?
  • Are there any additional or missing characters?
  • Which would you prefer – the book or the film? Why?
  • Our aim in English over the next few lessons will be to take on the role of a scriptwriter who is converting Warhorse the book into Warhorse the film. 
  • Study the example of a film script for one scene in Warhorse. Using your features checklist, can you identify the different features used?
  • Choose a section/Chapter of the book that you find most interesting and consider how you can turn this into a script. It is important to remember that the horses cannot talk so you must show their behaviour through actions and mannerisms instead. 
  • Begin to draft your own screenplay of the chapter using the example to help you and checklist to meet the success criteria. 


Awards we have received so far.

  • Primary Science
  • Healthy Schools
  • Health for Life
  • Artsmark Award
  • EEF
  • Big Lottery Fund
  • Music Mark