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Help picking a writing curriculum...

Help picking a writing curriculum...

I'm trying to pick a writing program for my 6th grade 12yo son. Up till now we've done pretty relaxed CM style language arts... Oral narration, copywork, 4&5th grades he did a written narration (mostly) once a week. Grammar instruction has been pretty light, Bryan Cleary books, Grammar Land, mad libs, and last year he used ELTL for the first semester and Fix It Grammar 1 the second. We also tried IEW SWI-B last year on the recommendation of a friend who loves it. IEW writing was a flop for us. My son loves how funny Andrew Pudewa is, but the writing itself was just painful. We are just not a rigid rules kind of family. Lol. The classical emphasis on grammar is just not for us.

This year we are using Brave Writer Arrows and Partnership Writing and love it. But I feel like my son needs some more specific instruction in writing. He can write sentences, but not paragraphs. He loves free writing, but it's more a collection of monsters or brothers drooling and burping, then writing a story or anything recognizable. As we move into late middle school and high school, I don't feel confident in my ability to guide him in writing. I don't know what the end goal is or how to get there. Lol. So I'd like something to use alongside Brave Writer that will give him some more specific direction on how to write, but still in a fairly relaxed manner.

For this kid, would Writing Strands or Wordsmith be a good choice? Or if I just stick with Brave Writer, will we get there? I also own Write On! which we've dabbled in and enjoyed. Maybe if I started having him work through that in addition to our family Brave Writer work? That does get into reports, essays, outlines, etc.

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

. But I feel like my son needs some more specific instruction in writing. He can write sentences, but not paragraphs.
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Have you ruled out using something like an evan moor workbook on sentences into paragraphs? Then you can use those skills in the workbook with any "curriculum" you want. You might check a local teacher supply store for something like http://www.evan-moor.com/p/549/writing-fabulous-sentences-paragraphs

don't panic on the state standards, etc. They put that info on there for those who are looking to teach a specific standard or something.

I don't know your child of course, but I've appreciated the scaffolding in those kinds of classroom workbooks to work on topic sentence, details, improving the sentences.

I have a feeling that super fans of writing strands will tell you it's the best show on earth and will tell you of course it's what you want. I have a feeling that others will say it was too loose goosey in what it wanted and have an opposite effect of the IEW feels "too structured". I've had hit and miss experiences with writing strands.

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

Take a look at JUMP IN.....it might fit what your looking for. Don't get too excited about the bad reviews of it using subjects that are not appropriate.....I didn't see anything that my student hadn't heard about before but that again is up to you to know your student. Mar ne

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...


Have you ruled out using something like an evan moor workbook on sentences into paragraphs? Then you can use those skills in the workbook with any "curriculum" you want. You might check a local teacher supply store for something like http://www.evan-moor.com/p/549/writing-fabulous-sentences-paragraphs
******

No, I haven't seen that before. That might be just what we need. Off to look at it...

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

I sat down with Write On! (http://www.learn4yourlife.com/homeschool-writing-curriculum.html) to look and see if it teaches paragraphs... It doesn't specifically but it has these exercises:

Pick an animal and write 3 facts about it
The next assignment is to take each of those facts and make it a topic sentence, then write 2-5 more sentences telling more about the topic sentence.

Another one make a chart with who, what, when, where, why and how. They think of different events and answer the 5w's for each, then write a couple sentences with that information. The very next assignment has them choose one of those events and use the sentences made before as the introductory paragraph and then write more paragraphs each one giving more information about one of the 5 W's (not all the W's need to be used).

These lessons are to be repeated with different topics until they've mastered it. In between there are some more fun lessons to alternate with.

Is this similar to what the Evan Moore book does? I don't think my son will need lots of broken down steps and hand holding. This might be enough. Since I already own it, I think I'll try it first.

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

My daughter on the other hand is a whole nother kettle of fish. I think I'm going to need something very broken down in steps for her...

My son 'hated writing' mostly from a he hated anything school related and handwriting was harder for him. He is very creative and has lots of ideas.

My daughter hates writing because she's a perfectionist and knows she can't spell (her spelling is definitely below grade level, but the situation is not helped by having a precocious natural speller for a younger brother), but also cause she doesn't know what to say. She's not very creative, she likes following rules. Would Writing Strands help with a child like that?

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

I've used Wordsmith for a bunch of my children. I like it pretty well at about 7th grade.

re: Help picking a writing curriculum...

I've used Wordsmith for a bunch of my children. I like it pretty well at about 7th grade.

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