We are wrapping up our school year around the Hangout, but I wanted to tell you about a writing curriculum I added in at the end of the year that I felt was a really great addition to our homeschool day. Although we finished our grammar curriculum earlier in the year, I felt like we were missing the ability to transfer the knowledge of parts of speech and sentence structure into good writing. There was just a disconnect there. So when the TOS Crew offered its members the opportunity to review Write Shop Junior I jumped on it.
The first step was to use Write Shop’s placement help to see which book we needed to use. Since MA is in fourth grade and has a good grammar background, we chose Write Shop Junior Book D, which is recommended for 3rd or 4th graders, or reluctant 5th graders.
We got the pdf version, and if I had that to do over again, I would go with the print edition. What can I say? I still prefer books and haven’t even made the transition to e-readers. I’m old-fashioned like that.
So, the book covers the following writing assignments:
Letter of Invitation
Expository Writing: Factual Article
And it introduces the following writing skills:
Identify and use proper grammar and punctuation
Narrow a broad topic to a specific topic
Brainstorm before writing
Structure a sentence
Write a paragraph
Choose strong words instead of weak ones
Use emotion words to develop voice
Use the five senses to add descriptive detail
Self-edit and revise their work
We’ve already worked through the the first couple of writing assignments, and we really like this curriculum. The pages are fun and engaging. The information is presented in a fun way so that writing seems more like a craft project than a boring assignment. My big girl was excited about writing.
You can purchase several parts to this series, but the main two you will want to get are the teacher’s guide and the student book. They are each $39.95 on the Write Shop website. This curriculum is very dependent on the teacher’s guide, so don’t even think about trying to teach from the student book. They also have a Time Saver Pack for $13.95 that will help you cut your prep time. It saves you the time to make your cards, games, etc. that are used in creative writing. There is also an accompanying grammar book called Fold-N-Go Grammar Pack that retails on their site for $19.95. These prices are for the print versions of these resources, but if you are more adventurous than I, you can purchase the pdf version to save a little money.
Still don’t know if Write Shop will work for you? You can read other TOS reviews here.