This is Princess. She aspires to be a writer when she grows up. She writes all she can. I want to foster this love, and because of that I’m always pushing her with our homeschool writing curriculum. This year I am trying something new with the kids, each of them is doing something to help them towards their future goal. For Princess, I wanted to push her out of her comfort zone of writing animal stories. This led me to Apologia Writers in Residence*.
What do you think of when you hear Christian fiction?
Work with me here for a minute, when I think of Christian fiction I think cheesy, forced, overly spiritualized. Every book has a conversion scene halfway through and they are usually not well-written.
Why did I bring this up?
Because Writers in Residence* challenges your student to go beyond the trite things you expect in Christian fiction, and this homeschool writing curriculum studies several different great Christian authors. I LOVE this!
If you want your kids to learn about writing, then they should really look at good writing. That’s a key component in Writers in Residence.
What you’re going to find in this awesome homeschool writing curriculum
Like all Apologia stuff I’ve worked with, there is a four-day school week. This is going to work perfectly for my plans for the coming school year. The plan is for Princess to work on her independent work, and on Friday I plan to meet with her and discuss what she learned, and then she’ll get to publish her work online. Yes, my daughter is about to become a blogger. We had a very long conversation about the rules of this yesterday (that’s going to be a future blog post).
Unlike most homeschool writing curriculum, HUGE sample you can get builds up from the bottom. The first unit is all about refining your sentences and your word choice (more on that in the next section).
Princess is complaining mightily about this, but I’m working to show her the sentences are the building blocks of everything else.
Each of these sentences can be built into amazing stories. They are not there yet, much to the chagrin of Princess.
As the teacher, I love how little prep work I have to do, and the rubrics are ready-made and detailed for each project. Can I just say, how much I love not creating new rubrics each time there’s a new assignment? I’m currently doing that for our Texas history and it is tiring.
My work is mainly going to consist of my weekly meeting with Princess to help her refine her writing.
The basis behind Writer’s in Residence
If you’re familiar with current writing theories, one of the big ones in education is 6 Traits +1 writing. I learned all about it back when I was a public school teacher, and I loved how it approached the different aspects of writing. It goes into the word choice, the ideas, and all of the little odds and ends you need to think about for writing. You can see every aspect sprinkled throughout the curriculum.
I actually started taking pictures of all of their first 20 or so pages to show you, all the great material they have to get you started and to explain the philosophy behind the curriculum, but I realized it makes more sense for you check out the HUGE sample you can get. It’ll certainly be better quality than the pictures I might take. It looks like Apologia is either phasing out this curriculum or it has moved to another publisher, so the sample pages are gone. Here’s the short list of all your child is going to learn:
- word choice- this is the entire first unit, refining those sentences, and more all throughout
- different writing types- research writing, opinion pieces, short stories, autobiographies
- point of view- first person, third person, all that fun stuff
- paragraph formatting- how to write conversations, correct punctuation, sentence variation, transitions
- grammar- all of those ins and outs that are boring to teach, but so necessary
That’s a lot to take on over the course of a single school year, but it’s a great start, isn’t it?