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Sunday, May 20, 2012

TOS Review: WriteShop



Teaching children how to write well is a very important task.  Writing is a skill that everyone uses in some capacity.  Teaching children to write well is not as easy as it sounds.  Award winning WriteShop offers quality writing resources for kindergarten  through high school helping both new and veteran homeschoolers teach their children writing with confidence.  Over the last several weeks we have had an opportunity to use and review Write Shop Junior  Book D.  

Write Shop Junior is a flexible creative writing program that helps you guide your children through the writing process.  Each lesson uses games and activities that teach and review important writing and editing skills.  Book D is recommended for 3-4 th graders but has been successfully used with reluctant 5th and 6th graders.

The skills introduced in book D include:
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

Table of Contents 
 Letter of Invitation
Humor
Adventure
Science Fiction
Mystery
Poetry/Haiku
Folktales
Historical Fiction
Personal Narrative
Expository Writing: Factual Article

There are 3 components to Write Shop D.  The Teacher's Guide contains daily lesson plans, writing samples, guided writing scripts, step by step instructions, and learning games and exercises.  The Student Activity Pack contains the Student Worksheet Pack containing all of the necessary worksheets for the student to complete and the Level One Fold and Go grammar pack that contains necessary worksheets to review or introduce grammar rules and essential writing skills.  The third component is the optional Time Saver Pack which includes several ready made learning props taking away the need for you to make them on your own.

Example of worksheets: Brainstorming cake


This page will allow you to download a sample lesson

You can purchase WriteShop D as a hard copy or an e book.  Pricing is as follows:

Hard Copy- Includes Teacher Guide and Student Pack $39.95.  Optional Time Saver Pack $13.95.

E book-Includes Teacher Guide and Student Pack $34.95 Optional Time Saver Pack $13.95

To order click here.

WriteShop has generously offered a coupon code for 15% off any WriteShop Primary or Junior product from the WriteShop store valid until June 15, 2012.  Enter the code CREW15 at checkout.


WriteShop is nothing like any other writing program I've seen before.  It teaches writing in digestible chunks using fun lessons and learning activities.  The creator's love and enthusiasm for writing definitely comes through and there is a huge emphasis on making the writing experience fun.  There are a wide variety of different worksheets and activities The lessons are planned out for the teacher and there is a script for the teacher to follow for every lesson.  There are many different skills and types of writing taught throughout WriteShopD.    I loved the Fold N Go Grammar Packs.  I thought those were a wonderful way to teach/review grammar and writing skills in a visual way that the child can use for a reference and go back and look at as needed. There are 2 different teaching plans you can choose from, a 3 week or 2 week plan, giving you the flexibility to choose what fits your homeschool best.  They even have a suggested schedule for how to teach two children in two different books.   

WriteShop is not designed as a course that you can hand your child to complete on their own.  It is designed a course that is designed for the parents to work closely with the child preparing them for writing independence as they get older.  Parents are encouraged to share in the whole process with the child.

We received the e book  version for our review.  This is not the first time we have reviewed e books for different subjects, but it was the most challenging.  It is a very difficult course to navigate in e book format.  I had to print out every page for each lesson including the Teacher's Manual,  in order for it to make sense to me.  The Teacher's Manual was the most difficult to navigate because you can not scroll through the whole thing at once.  You can only view one lesson at a time.  With the e book only being $5 cheaper then the physical copy, I believe it would be to your advantage to purchase the physical copy and have everything you need right in front of you. 

To see what other crew mates had to say click here.

Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received a complimentary e book download of WriteShop D for the purpose of writing a fair and honest review.  I received no other compensation. 

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