I am a pretty relaxed homeschooler, and that has worked well for us, especially with homeschooling multiple ages. The problem that can arise at times, is that I may forget to teach important things like writing mechanics!
I have 4 children, one who graduated our homeschool last year, and 3 girls that will be in 8th grade, 6th grade and 2nd grade this Fall. Sometimes, my poor middle child seems to fall through the cracks when it comes to school. I am always so focused on helping the younger one with her reading and math, and the middle schooler with her science and pre-algebra, that I forget that my middle one who does great with independent learning, may need a little guidance in certain subjects.
One of those subjects, (I just realized this year when I was going over our portfolio) is writing. I have never used a real formal writing curriculum with my 10 year old. Since we are pretty relaxed homeschoolers it has been fine for us thus far. She can write creative stories, does dictation and narration very well, and knows proper grammar, but I have never put a lot of time and detail into making sure she is writing correctly.
Now that she is going into 6th grade which is the middle school years, I knew that I needed to step up the game with her, and focus on her writing skills this year. I have been looking for a writing curriculum that is open and go, as my daughter works great independently, she actually prefers it. This also works great for me as a busy work at home mom of many different grades. I was also looking for something that was affordable and easy to grade.
In doing a lot of research with Carrie, we found Winning with Writing from Jack Kris Publishing.
Carrie also decided to use Winning with Writing with her 4th grader this coming year. Read all about her curriculum selections here.
- There are 8 levels that are based on a 36 week school year
- Lessons are divided into five separate levels 1 – 8
- Each level equates to grade level (but you can use what fits your child best)
- Levels are based on a 36-week school year
- 2 workbooks for 1st and 2nd semester
- Writing space is provided directly in the workbooks, so you do not need any extra paper or notebooks
- Low price of $26.99 with two workbooks and a teacher guide
I love how straight forward this writing curriculum is. It is truly open and go, with no teacher preparation or a lengthy, overwhelming teacher guide. The two workbooks are written directly to the student with a short lesson and directions and spaces to write in the book. There is just one very slim answer key to help you grade the writing lessons. Most of the answers will say that answers will vary, but in addition to that are helpful tips to tell you what to look out for as you are grading. It is so simple!
After looking at the scope and sequence and the table of contents of the Level 5 and Level 6 books, I chose to go with the Level 5 Complete Set.
I chose Level 5 because we haven’t done a formal writing curriculum before, and it seemed to cover more basics that I think are important for my daughter to learn. I didn’t want there to be a bunch of gaps and after comparing the scope and sequence, this seemed like a better fit. I like that it just lists the level and not grade, so she may not even realize that she is working in a book that is a grade behind. That is one of my favorite parts of homeschooling, being able to tailor our learning to the needs of that particular child.
If you are looking for an affordable, simple, open and go writing curriculum, I highly recommend Winning with Writing! We are very excited to get started with it next month.
Sarah is a wife, daughter of the King and Mama to 4 children (one who is a homeschool graduate!) She is a an eclectic,Charlotte Mason style homeschooler and has been homeschooling for over 16 years now. She is still trying to find the balance between work and keeping a home and says she can only do it by the Grace of God, and Coffee!