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Ministry of Education.

Exemplar D: Excellence

Going Up North

Develops and structure ideas effectively about the central character Nana Evie and the trip north to visit her.

Effective structure integrates key narrative elements:

  • the writer's experiences of the journey to Nana Evie's
  • Leigh and Evie's home
  • Nana Evie herself
  • what the writer enjoyed doing there.

The trip alone to Nana Evie's was an adventure. Mum took us into town and we sat in the hollow bus-stop waiting for a big green one with yellow kowhai flowers to take us up to Leigh. She'd buy us some lollies and a comic then give us a big hug and a kiss before we climbed up the big metal steps into the bus.

I always felt a little sad as we waved to Mum, I almost wanted to hop off and run back to her. But once the bus rumbled and hissed its way north we forgot all about Auckland. We sat with our faces pressed up against the windows making steamy patterns as buildings, cars, lights and shops all whizzed by. Slowly they'd break up and change until there was only big stretches of green. I never could read my comics on the bus. I'd get a headache. We'd talk and laugh about the people on the bus and try to guess where they'd hop off. Hardly anyone ever went all the way to Leigh. That was our stop.

Leigh is a little place with only two shops at either end on the road. It always seemed quite empty and lonely but it was peaceful and nice at the same time. At Nana's funny little batch down by the creek we'd and pile over the gate to race down to get there first. Nana was always waiting on her steps leaning against her broom that was never far from her reach. Her big skirts swung in the wind and her sparkly old eyes watched us closely as we ran to hoard around and hug her big waist. We'd all chatter non-stop about everything we'd done and she'd just grin and say 'Ah my little city mokopunas aye - talk talk non-stop no time for nothing but your news, by crikey aye'.

We'd spend our days doing a hundred things. Climbing to the top of the hills that enclosed us and sliding down on the biggest nikau palms we could find. Tramping through the soft mud down by the creek and swimming from a big macrocarpa tree hanging over its banks. We'd roll and hide in the huge white sand dunes that covered the beach and wander through the paddocks looking for blackberries to pick for Nana.

Our stay always seemed so short. Nana was so good to us. She'd have a far-off misty look and smile on us so that we knew, although we had to go home, she would always be with us and we would always be with her. The trip home was long and tiring and we were all worn out yet full of satisfaction. That's how I remember going up North to visit Nana and how I always will.

Uses language features appropriate to audience and purpose with control to command attention.

Convincing manner of expression effectively sustained throughout.

Text conventions used accurately.

Published on: 23 Nov 2010