Authorial Techniques – Upper Key Stage 2

During guided reading, shared reading, class readers and independent reading children are taught and explore authorial techniques.


Upper Key Stage 2

Technique Definition Example
Speech which uses an accent or slang Show more about your character using the way they speak

“I was so frightfully upset, old boy.”


“Gi mi that thing thaz got under y’and.”

Broken speech Miss parts out to show the characters feelings – tired or scared etc

“You can’t ma…ma…make me!” Sue stammered.


The victim stammered, “But … I … I didn’t see… I didn’t see anything!


Camera, pan, zoom – starting with the big picture and zooming in.


On a hill above the valley there was a wood.  In the wood there was a tree.  Under the tree there was a hole. In the hole lived Mr Fox and Mrs Fox and their four small foxes.

In a far off land, beyond the mountains, there was a village and in the village there was a small wooden house and in the attic of that house was a …


Allusion When an author makes reference to a known place or figure originating outside of the text.

“Stop acting so smart because you’re hardly Einstein.”


This place is happier than Disney Land.


It was like the Garden of Eden.


Juxtaposition Using two contrasting (or opposite) ideas or concepts so the reader will compare them.

I hate loving you.


All is fair in love and war.


Making a mountain out of a molehill.


It was a beautiful beast.

Oxymoron a figure of speech which uses contradictory (opposite) ideas.

Cruel kindness

Deafening silence

Awfully nice


Accidently on purpose

Controlled chaos

Living dead

Alone in a crowd

Delicious agony

Luminous black

Darkness visible

Sad smile

Negative description Describing what was not there

This hobbit had no jacket, no shoes, no umbrella and no sense.


The creature had no feathers or fur.


Joseph looked the park but saw no swing, no slide, no fun.


Megan hated this new school. She had no friends, no uniform, no books, no place to belong.

Onomatopoeia sound words Here come the penguins. Splish, splash, splosh!
The fly buzzed past.Thwock! The arrows flew.


The rocks clattered and crashed as they tumbled down the side of the mountain.

Pathetic Fallacy Using weather to foreshadow something which is going to happen. Bad weather = something bad is going to happen.

Dark thunder clouds rolled down the valley.


The air grew still and heavy as the black crows began to circle.


The moon looked down on the scene and wept in pity.

Rain clouds wept and the thunder raged at what it knew was to come.

Personification Giving human characteristics to something which is not human

The wind sang.


The trees whispered the secrets of winter.


The naked trees bent double in the fierce easterly wind.

Questions Use questions to draw the reader in.

How far had he walked? Nobody knows. Where had he come from? Nobody knows.


Why was he saying those things? What had I done?


Would he recognise me after all this time? Surely his memory wasn’t that good?