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This article explores strategies used to improve boys' writing in a Year 6 class based on classroom research and a review of the literature. The study took place in a Catholic school in the Australian Capital Territory in a single-stream Year 6 classroom with seven boys and fifteen girls. To support and improve students' narrative writing, a qualitative, interpretive approach termed 'collaborative talk' was employed to investigate the use of oral feedback from peers and teachers. Observation during literacy blocks and analysis of writing led to intervention based on the teacher's concerns about the quality of the writing produced by the student, especially during their 'lightning writing' sessions. The article explains the process of lightning writing and explores pedagogical strategies for improving the quality of writing, with a particular emphasis on boys' literacy learning. The 'collaborative talk' approach gave the writer a range of possible ways to proceed; it reflected the students' voices and they determined the feedback. To improve students' writing, the class teacher's new role became that of facilitating student dialogue, modelling effective feedback, and speeding up the feedback process.

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