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Old 12-22-2011, 10:31 AM
 
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I liked Writing A-Z , although I didn't follow through with making them do it. I think I'll give it another try, as my oldest is struggling in "idea organization". It also focuses on capitalization, punctuation, etc, good for elementary age.

For those with middle schoolers needing writing help, I found WriteAtHome - Online Writing Tutors for Teens and Tweens. It's sort of expensive, but its like an online course, where they give you assignments and grade them, then you have to edit, etc. I'm thinking about doing it, because I'm at a loss on how to get my kid to write more than 2 line answers to essay questions.
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Old 12-22-2011, 03:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cc0789 View Post
I liked Writing A-Z , although I didn't follow through with making them do it. I think I'll give it another try, as my oldest is struggling in "idea organization". It also focuses on capitalization, punctuation, etc, good for elementary age.

For those with middle schoolers needing writing help, I found WriteAtHome - Online Writing Tutors for Teens and Tweens. It's sort of expensive, but its like an online course, where they give you assignments and grade them, then you have to edit, etc. I'm thinking about doing it, because I'm at a loss on how to get my kid to write more than 2 line answers to essay questions.
Those both look like good programs. Do you have a guestimate as to how long the WriteAtHome takes each night? I love the feedback that this program provides to their writers. But I'm afraid that, along with their regular homework, the program might be too time consuming for my kids during the school year. I wonder if WriteAtHome has a Summer program. I wish they offered a trial of the program during Winter and Spring breaks!

I was leaning towards having the kids do book reports during the school year because they are already spending time every night reading/talking about the books which should cut down on the planning time for their papers.

Since they are already assigned nightly reading (parent's choice of books), writing a paper wouldn't add too much more time on to their weekly homework load. Why not kill two birds with one stone?
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Old 12-22-2011, 03:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by springfieldva View Post
Since they are already assigned nightly reading (parent's choice of books), writing a paper wouldn't add too much more time on to their weekly homework load. Why not kill two birds with one stone?
"Parent's choice" means YOUR choice? Why? (Curious as to your reasoning.)

I should have said this earlier:

Children will grow to HATE writing if they are forced to write. They should be encouraged to write as a form of self expression. Why are you making them write book reports? How about having them write stories about their day? Or creating fictional stories? You can help them with their spelling and punctuation without having them write book reports. Which teaches nothing but formula writing. They'll learn that in school.

Last edited by DewDropInn; 12-22-2011 at 03:37 PM..
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
"Parent's choice" means YOUR choice? Why? (Curious as to your reasoning.)

And some advice from a writer (me). I should have said this earlier.

Children will grow to HATE writing if they are forced to write. They should be encouraged to write as a form of self expression. Why are you making them write book reports? How about having them write stories about their day? Or creating fictional stories? You can help them with their spelling and punctuation without having them write book reports. Which teaches nothing but formula writing. They'll learn that in school.
I should have said parent approved choice.

My kids are pretty avid readers but I think that they would miss out on a lot of the classics if they were to choose every book for themselves. They resisted reading Sounder at first (hated it!) because the narration, the vocabulary, the story content, etc. is a lot different from what they are used to seeing in popular literature. But once they got into all of the drama in Sounder, they were captivated. What a great story!

They already do a fair amount of creative and journal type writing. But I find that creative stories in general are much harder to critique and organize than other types of writing would be.

I think that a 1 or 2 page, neat, edited and well organized essay or book report would be great practice for my kids.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by springfieldva View Post
I should have said parent approved choice.
Whew! Thanks for explaining that. I had visions, lol.

I understand, now, what you're trying to do. The main advice I can give you is to not suck the joy of writing right out of them. Encourage them to write for pleasure as well.
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Old 12-22-2011, 09:29 PM
 
Location: California
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I did not but if I had to do it over again I probably would try to do this.
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Old 12-23-2011, 07:34 AM
 
Location: Knoxville, TN
346 posts, read 428,382 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cc0789 View Post
I liked Writing A-Z , although I didn't follow through with making them do it. I think I'll give it another try, as my oldest is struggling in "idea organization". It also focuses on capitalization, punctuation, etc, good for elementary age.

For those with middle schoolers needing writing help, I found WriteAtHome - Online Writing Tutors for Teens and Tweens. It's sort of expensive, but its like an online course, where they give you assignments and grade them, then you have to edit, etc. I'm thinking about doing it, because I'm at a loss on how to get my kid to write more than 2 line answers to essay questions.
This is my son exactly! I started home schooling for his 5th grade year, and since he hated writing and was very negative about school and learning in general, we focused on the joy of learning. He is definitely in a better place!

Last year, his 6th grade year, I also began home schooling my daughter and it was quite the learning curve for me. This year I feel much more on top of the game, and we are going hot and heavy into language arts. I decided the only way to make it easier was for him to have lots of practice!

To the OP: go to the website called nanowrimo and find the section for young writers and/or teachers.
They have put together writing lessons for different grade levels. I think next year we will add this to our language arts and in Novemeber the kids will tackle their 3rd year of November Novel Writing. You can do it too, it can be a family thing!
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Old 12-23-2011, 09:00 AM
 
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Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
Children will grow to HATE writing if they are forced to write. They should be encouraged to write as a form of self expression. Why are you making them write book reports? How about having them write stories about their day? Or creating fictional stories? You can help them with their spelling and punctuation without having them write book reports. Which teaches nothing but formula writing. They'll learn that in school.
As with anything educational, you need to reinforce at home when necessary. I think the attitude of washing your hands of anything because they will learn it at school is shocking. Children are different, and I have one that will write for hours and loves it, she needs no help. My other one, if he isn't forced to write, he WON"T, simple as that.
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Old 12-23-2011, 09:08 AM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,368,217 times
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Originally Posted by cc0789 View Post
As with anything educational, you need to reinforce at home when necessary. I think the attitude of washing your hands of anything because they will learn it at school is shocking. Children are different, and I have one that will write for hours and loves it, she needs no help. My other one, if he isn't forced to write, he WON"T, simple as that.
The message I was trying to get across is that parents should encourage their children's creative writing.
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Old 12-23-2011, 02:29 PM
 
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Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
The message I was trying to get across is that parents should encourage their children's creative writing.
Why? Is creative writing somehow a more important skill?
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