I have loved writing since I was in the first grade. I used to write stories in my spare time and I got excited every time an essay was assigned in school. That love of writing lasted all through school, and now I am a writer. So obviously my kids also have this love of writing, right?
Mr. C was a serious reluctant writer for a long time, and this year I’ve been doing everything I can to help him find the love of writing that I know is deep, deep, down somewhere in his little heart! Thankfully this year I’ve found and fallen in love with a writing curriculum, and even Mr. C has had fun with it!
How This Writer Teaches Writing In Her Homeschool
(I am a WriteShop Ambassador. I recieved the curriculum to try, and I’ve been compensated for my time. I am not required to give positive reviews, and all thoughts and opinions are my own.)
A Good Foundation in the Basics of Writing
It is so important for kids to have a really strong foundation in the basics of writing. Basic sentence structure, how to form paragraphs, spelling, and formatting may not be fun to teach but they’re totally necessary.
I love that WriteShop covers all of the important writing skills in a developmentally appropriate way so that kids are building on their skills one step at a time. As a writer, it can be hard for me to think about how difficult those building blocks are for kids who are just learning. WriteShop helps me to explain things that came naturally to Mr. C who doesn’t naturally love writing.
Make Writing Seriously Fun
Okay really, I pinky promise this isn’t totally contradictory to the last statement. You can learn the basics of writing and have serious fun at the same time. Some of the ways we make writing fun are adding art to our writing lessons, making up silly movements for different things we need to remember, and incorporating as much hands-on learning as possible into our homeschool writing lessons as possible.
With WriteShop the fun is added to the lesson for me. I mentioned before about how we loved coloring our brainstorming activity, and we have also been able to make a rocket ship after writing a story about outer space! Mr. C is my “I hate writing” kiddo, and even he has been having so much fun doing WriteShop!
Prioritizing Real Writing Projects
I write all the time. I write blog posts, I write books, I write articles. What I don’t write? Random things for no reason. I cannot stand when writing curriculum is filled with totally pointless assignments. “Write about some random thing that no one has cared about for 15 years”. Uhhhh no thank you.
When you’re trying to get a reluctant writer to love writing, you need their writing assignments to be interesting and useful. The first lesson in WriteShop had Mr. C writing a letter to his cousin that lives out of state. When we started writing stories, it was a story about outer space. What third-grade boy doesn’t love outer space?
Take it at Their Pace
This has been my biggest struggle as a writer teaching writing. How can I understand a typical third-grade pace? Things that make sense to me without even thinking are a huge struggle for Mr. C. He’s a natural reader, but writing is more of a struggle.
With WriteShop, each lesson has a “Smaller Steps” and a “Flying Higher” section. The smaller steps give you tips for going through the lesson with a reluctant or struggling writer. It explains how to effectively use narration and dictation in story writing if it’s necessary. The flying higher section explains how to make the lessons more challenging for a child who is excelling and wants to take their writing to the next level.
With the smaller steps and flying higher tips for each lesson, it means that a kid like me, who wanted to write novels in grade school, and a kid like Mr. C, who would rather read ten novels than write a paragraph, can both use the WriteShop curriculum and totally thrive with it.
We have been so thrilled working with WriteShop curriculum this year. It has totally revolutionized writing lessons in my homeschool, and Mr. C is really enjoying himself. The other day he even said that maybe one day he’d like to become a writer like mommy. I can’t explain to you what a miracle that is in our home.
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