Writing a recount

Home learning focus

Learn about writing a recount.

In this lesson there are:

  • three videos

  • three activities


Watch this video to understand what a recount is.

Introduction to writing a recount.

Now watch this video to take a closer look at the techniques used to write a recount.

Learn about the techniques to write a recount with Michael Rosen.

Writing a recount

How to write a compelling recount:

  • Write your recount in the first person because it happened to you.

I used detailed maps to plan my flight.

  • Use the past tense because it has already happened.

I had trained for years!

  • Clear structure. Use paragraphs to separate the beginning, middle and end. Your middle section should include at least three events or experiences.

  • Recounts are written in the order in which they happened (chronological order). Use time conjunctions eg: firstly, next, then and finally to show this.

  • Using description to add detail will enable your reader to build an image in their head.

The aeroplane’s long propellers reflected the sunlight.

  • It is important to share your feelings about what happened throughout your recount.

My stomach turned continuously as I took off. I was incredibly nervous!

  • Use emotive language so the reader understands your point of view.

I put blood, sweat and tears into planning my flight to ensure it was successful.


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

Activity 1

Test your knowledge of writing a recount with this quiz.

Activity 2

Check your understanding using this diamond nine activity.

Key features of a recount in a diamond nine diagram.

Can you order the following features of a recount from the most effective (at the top) to the least effective (at the bottom)?

  • first person
  • past tense
  • paragraphs
  • clear structure
  • chronological order
  • detail
  • feelings
  • emotive language
  • time conjunctions

Top tip!

Sketch out the diagram to save yourself time.

Activity 3

  1. Watch this video about the explorer Amelia Earhart.
Discover the story of the explorer Amelia Earhart.
  1. Write down some key facts you learnt about Amelia.

  2. Imagine it is 1932 and you are Amelia. You have just landed after the first ever transatlantic flight and need to write down as much as you can about this fantastic experience!

Write a recount of your amazing journey.

Remember to include some of the key features of a recount.

Top Tip

In your concluding paragraph, try to:

  • pose a question to the reader
  • look forward to the future

For example, 'As I look towards my future, I’d love to fly around the whole world! Would you like to learn how to fly?'

Where next?

In this lesson you have learnt about writing a recount.

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

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