Learning focus

To understand what proofreading is and how to use it to improve your writing.

This lesson includes:

  • two videos that explain the importance of checking your writing for mistakes

  • four activities


Proofreading is the process of looking through your work, finding mistakes and correcting them. It’s a very important part of the writing process.

Most authors, even famous ones, check and rewrite their stories many times before they are happy to let someone else read them.

Watch this short clip to learn more about proofreading.

Learn about why it's important to check your writing for mistakes.

Top proofreading tips

  • Once your story is finished, read it to yourself.

  • Pretend that someone else wrote the story, see how well you think the story is written and then rewrite it to make it better.

  • Use conjunctions to make your sentences flow and make sense.

  • Double-check your facts.

  • Look out for spelling, grammar and punctuation mistakes.

  • Look for words or sentences that you can make better by choosing different vocabulary, adding description or adding adverbs.

Now watch the following clip to see why it’s also important to proofread in everyday life.

See why proofreading is important in everyday life.


You may need paper and a pen or pencil for some of these activities.

Activity 1

Practise your proofreading skills by highlighting the mistakes. Can you spot all three?

Activity 2

Now have a go at correcting the punctuation mistakes.

Activity 3

Read Lauren's diary entry. It’s a good start, but the spelling, punctuation and grammar needs proofreading. That's your job!

You could print the extract out and edit it by crossing out mistakes and adding in corrections, like your teacher would.

Or you could write a list of all the mistakes you can spot on a sheet of paper instead.

Top tip!

Look out for:

  • spelling mistakes (such as ‘gud’ which should be spelled ‘good’)

  • punctuation mistakes (such as missing full stops and capital letters)

  • grammatical errors (such as missing words or words not in the past tense)

Lauren's diary entry

Activity 4

Now choose three paragraphs from Lauren's diary entry and rewrite them.

This time you should focus on improving the quality of her writing by adding more detail and description.

You could:

  • add more impressive vocabulary
  • add adjectives
  • add adverbs
  • add more detail

For example: ‘As the sun came though my curtain’ could become 'As the pale, morning sun glimmered around the edges of my curtains.'

Top tip!

Choose three paragraphs that follow on from each other.

Where next?

In this lesson you have learnt about proofreading your writing.

There are other useful articles on Bitesize to help you improve your writing.

There's more to learn

More lessons to help with learning at home
KS2 English
More from KS2 English
Bitesize games