Biographies and autobiographies

Watch: what are autobiographies and biographies.

Biographies and autobiographies are both types of non-fiction stories about someone’s life.

They are both based in fact but there are some key differences between them.

Watch this video in which teacher Mr McPartlin explains the differences. Listen carefully and join in with the activities.

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What are the differences between biographies and autobiographies? Watch this Teacher Talk to find out.

Similarities and differences

Time for a recap on those similarities and differences!

Similarities

Both biographies and autobiographies:

tell the story of someone’s life

are written in the past tense

follow chronological order (the order in which things actually happened)

are non-fiction

Differences

To see some examples, watch the first minute of each of these clips.

The first clip is written as a biography of activist Rosa Parks and the second clip is written as if it were an autobiography . Can you spot the differences?

Watch: Rosa Parks biography example

Video transcript video transcript.

We use buses every day to go to school or into town. It's not unusual, but this story is about a bus journey that changed millions of lives.

Let's go to America, in 1955, to Montgomery in the southern state of Alabama.

There, when a woman called Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat, a bus journey became very important.

Rosa's refusal was a protest about racism against black people. Racism is when someone thinks you’re not as good as them because the colour of your skin or your race is different to theirs, so they treat you differently.

At that time, southern states in America, had something called ‘segregation’. This meant people of different skin colours had different schools, restaurants, even toilets.

Segregation happened on buses too.

One day, Rosa was in a seat for black people, but white people's seats were full. The bus driver wanted Rosa to give her seat to a white person, but Rosa said no!

Rosa was a member of a civil rights group which fought for black and white people to be treated the same.

She was arrested and taken to jail for a few hours.

Rosa didn't fight alone, people organised a bus boycott, which meant they stopped using buses for a year. They walked instead. This bus company lost a lot of money. The boycott was a peaceful stand against racism.

Judges eventually said having separate black and white parts of buses was not allowed.

"Hello, friends of freedom. It's a wonderful day and let us be thankful we have reached this point and we will go farther from now to greater things. Thank you!"

Today, Rosa Parks is remembered as an ordinary woman who took a stand to help black people in America be treated fairly. To be treated the same as whites.

Watch: Rosa Parks autobiography example

The life of Rosa Parks, in her own words.

Top tip

Imagine the same story, but told by Mary Anning herself. How would it be different? What would Mary's thoughts and feelings be?

Re-write the story as if you were Mary writing your autobiography.

Use this sentence to start you off:

My name is Mary Anning and I was born on the 21 May, 1799.

More on Non-fiction

Find out more by working through a topic

Using evidence to support what you say

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examples of a biography ks2

Writing a speech

  • count 12 of 17

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Debating and presenting information

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Diary writing

  • count 14 of 17

examples of a biography ks2

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Biography Writing (KS2)

Biography Writing (KS2)

Subject: English

Age range: 7-11

Resource type: Lesson (complete)

matthewthomasmurray26

Last updated

19 August 2019

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This series of lessons teaches children how to plan, structure, write and edit biographies.

Can be used and adapted to Years 4-6

Included is the PowerPoint, example biography and lesson plans.

Hope it is useful.

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Home > Resources > KS2 RESOURCE PACK: Writing Extraordinary Biographies

examples of a biography ks2

Resource Pack: Writing Extraordinary Biographies

Key stage and subjects, what’s the story.

Have you discovered Puffin’s brilliant biographies for kids aged seven and up?

The Extraordinary Lives series includes: Malala, Michelle Obama, Stephen Hawking, Anne Frank , Katherine Johnson and Neil Armstrong. These beautifully illustrated books include timelines, fascinating facts and inspirational quotes from their stars. The series celebrates how ordinary people can lead extraordinary lives because of their own choices, actions, beliefs and passions and will inspire your class that they too can be extraordinary.

This resource pack includes:

You’ll get material for four or more Literacy, Citizenship and PSHE lessons, adaptable for pupils in KS2 and KS3.

Once pupils understand the different features of biography writing  they’ll be able to create the biography of an extraordinary person of their choice using the template in the pack

Get the Resource Pack: Writing Extraordinary Biographies

Related books, the extraordinary life of anne frank, the extraordinary life of katherine johnson, the extraordinary life of malala yousafzai, the extraordinary life of michelle obama, the extraordinary life of neil armstrong, the extraordinary life of stephen hawking, who makes puffin schools, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> puffin schools has been created by the children’s publisher puffin to help bring together all the inspiring content we create for schools into one place. fa-angle-down--> what ages are the books on puffin schools for, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> the books on this website will range from those for eyfs through to primary and up to lower secondary school. you can discover our full range of books at puffin.co.uk fa-angle-down--> what is puffin, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> puffin is an imprint of penguin random house, the world’s number-one publisher representing a vibrant community of publishing houses marked by unparalleled success. through our world of stories, puffin aims to open up the world to every child. our mission is to inspire children to feel they can be and do anything, and to create readers for life. puffin started out as a non-fiction publisher, with its first title appearing in 1940. as the most iconic and well-known children’s book brand in the uk today, we are always on the lookout for innovative ways to tell the world’s favourite stories and for brilliant new debut talent and brands that connect with today’s young readers, from newborn up to twelve years old. we publish a diverse and wide range of fiction, non-fiction, picture books and children’s classics. our list includes some of the world’s favourite authors, illustrators and licensed brands, such as eric carle, helen oxenbury, nadia shireen, the snowman, doctor who, roald dahl, tom fletcher, jeff kinney, rick riordan, robin stevens, and jacqueline wilson to name but a few. fa-angle-down--> what’s the connection between ladybird, puffin and penguin, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> ladybird, puffin and penguin are imprints of penguin random house uk. across their extensive list, we believe there is a story for every child, everywhere. you can find information about books for all ages at penguin.co.uk fa-angle-down--> where can i buy puffin books from, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> all the books featured on this website can be purchased in the usual way: as well as being available on the high street and online, you can find lots of brilliant offers via school-specific suppliers and wholesale retailers. fa-angle-down--> how do i get in contact with a member of the puffin schools team, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> whether you’ve got a brilliant idea for a lesson, a photograph of something incredible you’ve done at your school or just have a question, please email  [email protected] and a member of the team will get back to you as soon as possible . fa-angle-down--> what’s happened to puffin virtually live, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> the story-makers show  was known as puffin virtually live  up until march 2019. the content and ambition of the show remains the same: to give every pupil the opportunity to engage with authors and illustrators in their own classroom using the power of the internet. we’ve re-named puffin virtually live  so that it’s easier for new teachers to discover it as part of puffin schools and to acknowledge that the show now premieres on show day, rather than being streamed live. fa-angle-down--> what’s happened to my puffin virtually live account, tag on the top needs the closed class if you start as expanded, leave data-collapsed="false" attribute, its used in the css --> your account for puffin virtually live has been deactivated as it is no longer a feature of the puffin schools website. if you were registered for the newsletter, you will now receive the puffin schools newsletter, which is filled with all the latest information about accompanying resources and upcoming shows. if you do not wish to receive it any longer then please unsubscribe. fa-angle-down--> which video platform is the story-makers show hosted on.

examples of a biography ks2

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examples of a biography ks2

Features of a biography KS2 – 8 of the best worksheets and resources for writing and comprehension

Features of a biography KS2 resource pack

Whether they're recounting the lives of famous people or simply describing a family member, these activities, ideas and model texts will help your Key Stage 2 pupils get to grips with biographical writing…

Teachwire

1 | KS2 biographical recounts worksheets

examples of a biography ks2

This Key Stage 2 text types resource pack will help children to learn how to write informative biographical recounts.

They will write a biography about an influential person – either someone that they know or someone who is in the public eye – and there are two model texts included to inspire them (one on a relative and one on a famous figure).

This resource also includes a biography writing sheet, biography research sheet, writing plan, writing frame and themed writing paper.

Check it all out here.

2 | Features of a biography

examples of a biography ks2

For a good grounding in what a biography is and what it should include, the BBC bitesize page has handy, digestible pointers, plus videos, a quiz and more.

Check it out here.

3 | Puffin’s brilliant biographies resource

examples of a biography ks2

Based on its Extraordinary Lives series this resource pack from Puffin helps pupils understand the different features of biography writing, and lets them create the biography of an extraordinary person of their choice using the template in the pack.

The pack includes material for four or more Literacy, Citizenship and PSHE lessons, all of which are adaptable for pupils in KS2 and KS3.

Find it here.

4 | Barack Obama biography activity pack

examples of a biography ks2

This resource uses a topic-based approach to biographies based on President Obama.

Activities include a comprehension exercise, making a photo gallery, researching flags and facts about countries cited in Obama’s biography and writing a biography. Plus there are lots of extension ideas and activities included.

Find it all here.

5 | Muhammad Ali biography worksheet

examples of a biography ks2

Where was Muhammad Ali born? What was he known as before he changed his name? When did he retire?

Students are tasked to with using library books, magazines and/or online sources to fill in this report form about perhaps the greatest boxer of all time.

Download and print it here.

6 | Biography Wagoll model texts

examples of a biography ks2

As ever, if you’re looking for a selection of editable model texts for pretty much any literacy topic, Literacy Wagoll is a great place to go.

In the biographies section you’ll find everyone from Usain Bolt and David Beckham to Mary Berry, Jacqueline Wilson, Henry VIII, Roald Dahl and Santa Claus.

Check them all out here here.

7 | Florence Nightingale biography sequencing activity

examples of a biography ks2

This simple printable resource includes a number of sentences about Florence Nightingale for you to cut out and task students with putting back in the correct order.

Get this PDF to print out here.

8 | A biography of palaeontologist Mary Anning

examples of a biography ks2

Mary Anning was born on 21 May 1799 in the seaside town of Lyme Regis in Dorset, on the south coast of England. Mary received little education, was not trained as a scientist, but grew up to be a palaeontologist whose findings helped change the way scientists thought about the world.

This Year 6 Science biography helps children explain why she was so important to our understanding of fossils and acts as a handy model text for biographical writing.

Download it here.

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KS2 Text Types – Biographical Recounts

Resource Collection WAGOLL: text types writing packs

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Teach children how to write informative biographical recounts with this Key Stage 2 text types resource pack.

Pupils will write a biography about an influential person, either someone that they know or someone who is in the public eye. Two model texts are included, showing WAGOLL (what a good one looks like), to inspire writing.

This KS2 resource includes:

  • Model Text 1 Great Uncle John an example biography about a relative who inspires
  • Model Text 2 Jessica Ennis-Hill an example biography about an influential public figure
  • Biography writing sheet a PDF containing success criteria that pupils can use to support their writing; it includes examples of adverbials and past tense verbs which can be used to create cohesion
  • Biography research sheet a PDF for pupils to record key information about the person for whom they are writing a biography
  • Biography writing plan a worksheet to support pupils to plan and structure their writing
  • Writing frame A PDF sheet that pupils could use to present their work
  • Themed writing paper

What is a biography?

A biography is a written account of someone’s life, written by someone else.

National Curriculum English programmes of study links

  • Pupils should plan their writing by discussing writing that is similar to that which they are planning to write in order to understand and learn from its structure, vocabulary and grammar.
  • Pupils should draft and write by using simple organisational devices 9for example headings and subheadings).
  • Pupils should plan their writing by identifying the audience for and purpose for writing, selecting the appropriate form and using other similar writing as models for their own.
  • Pupils should draft and write by using a range of devices to build cohesion within and across paragraphs.

This resource is part of the WAGOLL: text types writing packs collection. View more from this collection

  • Teaching notes
  • Biographical writing research sheet
  • Biographical writing planning sheet
  • Biography writing frame
  • Biography model text - Great Uncle John
  • Biography model text - Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill

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Robert Burns KS2

KS2 Ordering a Biography Model Text

KS2 Ordering a Biography Model Text supports children's knowledge prior to writing. Order the sentences into paragraphs using given sub-headings.

Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Mother Teresa Guided Reading

Mother Teresa the Saint Mother Teresa KS2 Guided Reading Carousel Comprehension

Mother Teresa KS2 Guided Reading Carousel text in the form of a biography of Mother Teresa, which tells of her life and work to care for others.

examples of a biography ks2

My Memories of WWII (Y5m/Y6s) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y5m/Y6s readers in the form of an autobiography written by a man who was a child during WWII. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

William Wilberforce (Y2m/Y3s/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y2m/Y3s/Y4e readers linked to Black History Month in the form of a biography about William Wilberforce. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Floella Benjamin (Y3m/Y4d/Y5e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y3m/Y4d/Y5e readers linked to Black History Month in the form of a biography about Floella Benjamin. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Tanni Grey-Thompson (Y3m/Y4d/Y5e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y3m/Y4d/Y5e readers in the form of a biography about the Paralympian, Tanni Grey-Thompson. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Rebecca Adlington (Y2m/Y3d/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y2m/Y3d/Y4e readers in the form of a biography about the Olympian, Rebecca Adlington. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Bradley Wiggins (Y4m/Y5s/Y6e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y4m/Y5s/Y6e readers in the form of a biography about the Olympian, Bradley Wiggins. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Martin Luther King’s Biography (Y2m/Y3d/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

Martin Luther King's Biography aimed at (Y2m/Y3d/Y4e) readers in the form of a Guided Reading Pack based on Martin Luther King Junior. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Mother Seacole Biography (Y2m/Y3d/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y2m/Y3d/Y4e readers in the form of a biography about Mary Seacole. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Nick Skelton (Y5m/Y6s) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y5m/Y6s readers in the form of a biography about the Olympian, Nick Skelton. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Mo Farah (Y2m/Y3s/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y2m/Y3s/Y4e readers in the form of a biography about Mo Farah. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Andy Murray (Y3m/Y4s/Y5e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y3m/Y4s/Y5e readers in the form of a biography about Olympian, Andy Murray. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Wayne Rooney (Y2m/Y3d/Y4e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y2m/Y3d/Y4e readers in the form of a biography about Wayne Rooney. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Taylor Swift (Y3m/Y4s/Y5e) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Y3m/Y4s/Y5e readers in the form of a biography about Taylor Swift. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Ant and Dec (Black) Guided Reading Pack

A Guided Reading Pack aimed at Black Book Band Readers in the form of a biography about Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly. Text, teacher questions, follow-up work, vocabulary activities and SPAG activities included.

examples of a biography ks2

Text Marking a Biography Model Text

Six differentiated activities to identify key features in a biography.

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Annotated Biography — Sir David Attenborough (Years 3-4)

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This annotated biography provides detailed explanations of all the key language and layout features of the text type. Children can use it as useful example when learning the features of different non-fiction texts, or as the perfect guide when writing their own biographies. A version of the biography without notes is provided on a separate page so there is the option for children to make their own notes, which they can then compare to the annotated version.

  • Key Stage: Key Stage 2
  • Subject: English
  • Topic: Themes and Conventions
  • Topic Group: Reading
  • Year(s): Years 3-4
  • Media Type: PDF
  • Resource Type: Worksheet
  • Last Updated: 23/10/2023
  • Resource Code: E2WAE106

Develop positive attitudes to reading and understanding of what they read by identifying themes and conventions in a wide range of books.

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COMMENTS

  1. Exploring biographies

    KS1 KS2 KS3 GCSE

  2. KS2 Long and Short Biography Text Example Pack

    Biography examples for children to learn about famous people. Teach your students about some of history's most inspiring people with our collection of long and short biography text examples for children whilst learning how to go about writing a biography (KS2) for themselves. Show more

  3. Biographies and autobiographies

    Activity 1 Activity 2 Activity 3 Watch: What are autobiographies and biographies? Biographies and autobiographies are both types of non-fiction stories about someone's life. They are both based in...

  4. Biography Writing (KS2)

    Last updated Not quite what you were looking for? Search by keyword to find the right resource: This series of lessons teaches children how to plan, structure, write and edit biographies. Can be used and adapted to Years 4-6 Included is the PowerPoint, example

  5. KS2 Long and Short Biography Text Example Pack

    Biography examples for children to learn about famous people. Teach your students about some of history's most inspiring people with our collection of long and short biography text examples for children while learning how to go about writing a biography (KS2) for themselves.. Biographies are an excellent way of getting children interested in real-life people and stories.

  6. KS2 RESOURCE PACK: Writing Extraordinary Biographies

    Download What's the story? Have you discovered Puffin's brilliant biographies for kids aged seven and up? The Extraordinary Lives series includes: Malala, Michelle Obama, Stephen Hawking, Anne Frank , Katherine Johnson and Neil Armstrong.

  7. Information Text KS2: Biography Model/Example Text

    Using the biography of Tom Daley as an example, this learning pack on information texts for KS2 is a great way to engage your English class! Designed by teachers to meet learning outcomes, this bumper pack includes a range of reading materials, including poetry, fiction and non-fiction information texts. Show more Related Searches

  8. Features of a biography KS2

    Primary English Features of a biography KS2 - 8 of the best worksheets and resources for writing and comprehension Whether they're recounting the lives of famous people or simply describing a family member, these activities, ideas and model texts will help your Key Stage 2 pupils get to grips with biographical writing… by Teachwire

  9. KS2 Biographies and Autobiographies Primary Resources

    Write about the lives of different notable people or yourself with our biography and autobiography resources for KS2 English students. Write about the lives of different notable people or yourself with our biography and autobiography resources for KS2 English students. Recently Viewed and Downloaded › Recently Viewed › Recently Downloaded

  10. Biographies

    Thomas Edison Download File David Beckham Bio Download File Henry VIII Download File Mary Berry - Bio Download File Prince Otto - Clockwork Download File Santa Clause Download File Usain Bolt - Bio Download File Robert Falcon Scott Download File Jacqueline Wilson Bio Download File Sam Smith Download File King Canute - A Viking King Download File

  11. KS2 Text Types

    Themed writing paper What is a biography? A biography is a written account of someone's life, written by someone else. National Curriculum English programmes of study links Year 3/4

  12. PDF Year 5/6: Biographies

    Q What is a biography? Link to the Greek prefix of 'bio' meaning 'life' Q What do you think are the features of a biography? Class teacher to make a list of pupil's prior knowledge about the features of a biography Display the poster containing all the features of a biography - discuss any features that the children have not mentioned

  13. KS2 Biographies Resources & Worksheets

    Any Filter by Keyword KS2 Ordering a Biography Model Text KS2 Ordering a Biography Model Text supports children's knowledge prior to writing. Order the sentences into paragraphs using given sub-headings. Mother Teresa the Saint Mother Teresa KS2 Guided Reading Carousel Comprehension

  14. Y4 Information Texts: Biography Model/ Example Text

    If you're looking for a fantastic way to teach your KS2 pupils how to identify the key features of a biography and to write their own examples of this genre, then we think that our lovely Writing a Biography KS2 PowerPoint and Resource Pack might be just what you need!

  15. Y4 Information Texts: Biography Model/ Example Text

    Designed to help children learn the key features of writing a biography - KS2 PowerPoint, example texts, checklists and more to support learning in Year 4. What are the key features of a biography? A biography is a detailed description of a person's life. It involves more than just the basic facts like education, work, relationships, and death.

  16. Twinkl Biography Writing Examples

    If you are writing an example of a biography you should try to include: an interesting opening sentence to hook their reader. the past tense. third-person pronouns. key event and influences in the person's life. the passive voice. a summary of the main event's of a person's life in the first paragraph.

  17. Information Texts KS2: Biography Model/Example Text

    Using the biography of Tom Daley as an example, this learning pack on information texts is a great way to engage your English class! Designed by teachers to meet learning outcomes, this bumper pack includes a range of reading materials, including poetry, fiction and non-fiction information texts.This can demonstrate how various texts are written in terms of structure, content and language ...

  18. Annotated Biography

    This annotated biography provides detailed explanations of all the key language and layout features of the text type. Children can use it as useful example when learning the features of different non-fiction texts, or as the perfect guide when writing their own biographies. A version of the biography without notes is provided on a separate page ...

  19. Writing a Biography KS2 Word Mat

    Writing a biography KS2 is an important technique to develop in the classroom as they allow children to reflect on their own life choices and opinion as well as use crucial research skills to writing another person's biography. They can also be extremely inspirational to how children form their own goals and ambitions.

  20. KS2 Features of a Biography Writing Checklist

    Assessment > Biographies and Autobiographies Evaluate and edit by: Information Texts Reading English Unlimited Downloads KS2 Features of a Biography Writing Checklist 22 reviews Upper KS2 - Years 5 and 6 Writing - Composition Evaluate and edit by: Free Account Includes: Thousands of FREE teaching resources to download

  21. Guide to Writing a Biography Worksheet

    This Mini Biography Writing Frame Worksheet is a great resource to use as an introductory activity before children move on to writing a longer biography. With clear headings and a structure to follow, this worksheet will help children build up some confidence with biography writing. Develop your class's biography writing skills further with ...

  22. Writing a Biography KS2 Word Mat

    This Features of a Biography Word Mat is a great way to teach your child about writing a biography at home. It's a fantastic introduction to the genre and explains the purpose of a biography: to give an account of someone's life. Reading biographies together is also a brilliant way to teach your child about biographies and how they're ...