Monday, May 21, 2012

Write Shop Level D - A Review

Teacher's Edition - $39.95  (eBook - $34.95)

Activity Pack - $39.95 (eBook - $29.95)

Time Saver Pack - $13.95 (eBook - $13.95)

WriteShop Junior Book D is intended for 3rd, 4th, or reluctant 5th grade students.  Other grade levels are available.

Meet the authors of this great series.

About the program (from the website) -
WriteShop Junior is a creative writing program that appeals to many learning styles. As with all WriteShop products, Book D helps you guide children through the steps of the writing process. To keep the experience fun for everyone, each lesson includes engaging games and activities that teach and review important writing and self-editing skills. And whether you have a more advanced child or one who is fairly new to writing, this program is flexible so children can work at their own level.
Book D teaches the basics: how to come up with ideas; brainstorm and organize before writing; choose more interesting words; learn to self-edit in a fun and positive way; and publish creatively.

Check out Lesson 4 to get a really good feel for the program!

Want an idea of how much time to plan for each lesson?

Our Thoughts:

Creative writing is something that our homeschool could use more of.  We work on the grammar and the spelling, but writing sometimes gets left on the sideline.  So, I was eager to try this program out with my 10 year old daughter. 

The Teacher's Guide is very user friendly.  It provides detailed schedules, lesson plans, and conversation starters.  Here is the website's detailed course listing, to give you an idea of what to expect.

Book D Table of Contents
  • Letter of Invitation
  • Humor
  • Adventure
  • Science Fiction
  • Mystery
  • Poetry/Haiku
  • Folktales
  • Historical Fiction
  • Personal Narrative
  • Expository Writing: Factual Article
Skills Introduced in Book D
  • 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
  • Write sentences of different lengths
  • Use emotion words to develop voice
  • Use the five senses to add descriptive detail
  • Self-edit and revise their work
  • Creatively publish their final drafts
Product Details
  • Soft-cover book with plastic-coil binding. Lies flat for ease of use.
  • 266 pages
  • Includes several schedules with daily lesson plans. Schedules are flexible and easy to follow.
  • Not an independent course. Lessons designed for parent and child to work together.
Your student will need an Activity Pack  You can pick book form or eBook format.  It includes the Student Worksheets that your student will use with his/her lessons.  These includes activities such as reading logs, brainstorming forms, evaluation charts, etc. 

The pack also includes 10 Fold-n-Go Grammar Packs.  Each lesson guide is inserted into a folder for future reference.  These grammar guides include-

  • Lesson 1: Punctuation Marks
  • Lesson 2: Self-editing
  • Lesson 3: Nouns
  • Lesson 4: Pronouns
  • Lesson 5: Verbs
  • Lesson 6: Adjectives
  • Lesson 7: Adverbs
  • Lesson 8: Prepositions
  • Lesson 9: Capitalization
  • Lesson10: References
Grammar Guide inserted into folder for quick reference.

The company sells an optional Time-Saver Pack, which was included for my review purposes.  The Teacher's Edition includes instructions for games and activities to help boost your child's learning experience.  You may choose to follow these instructions and make them on your own.  But for $13.95, you can purchase the Time-Saver Pack.  You will have the games and activities ready when you are.  I think this pack is well worth the $13.95.  I know I appreciated having it.

We have been using this program for a couple of weeks now.  I am impressed with Write Shop.  There are so many things that I love about the program.  I plan to buy the Write Shop 1 set for my other daughter to use next year.  What better recommendation could I give than to tell you I plan to buy it myself next year (in a different level)? 

What do I love about it?

1. The schedule is very do-able.  You can choose to do one lesson in 2 weeks or 3 weeks, depending on which works best for your homeschool and student. 

2.  A variety of activities work with different learning styles.  My 10 year old has enjoyed them and it has helped things "click" for her.

3.  The Fold-n-Go Grammar Packs are great little reference packs.

4.  Writing topics are "general", not "specific", giving my daughter a great deal of freedom in her stories.

5.  The idea of a "sloppy-copy" has freed my daughter up to write without worry in her first draft.

6.  The Teacher's Manual is very detailed and user-friendly.  All the work has been done for me.

7.  The tear-out pages of the Activity Book. 

8.  The time-saver pack, because it really is a time saver.

I like this program.  It is creative and thorough and fun.  And it works!  I have been delighted to watch my daughter's creative side flourish.

If you prefer to use the eBook version, here is a tutorial about using it on an I-Pad.

Take 15% off any WriteShop Primary and Junior products in the WriteShop store (including e-books) using coupon code CREW15 at checkout. Offer valid through June 15, 2012.

Read more reviews from the TOS Crew.

Disclaimer: I received this product free of charge to review, as part of the TOS Homeschool Crew. The above is just my opinion. Please remember that opinions may, and do, vary.

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