Homeschool moms sometimes wonder: “How much parent involvement will WriteShop lessons ask of me?” You may have thought:
Yes, I know my child needs to learn to write well, but I want to be more hands-off. Can’t my child learn composition from a self-directed program? Why does WriteShop expect parents to participate in every lesson?
These are common questions! And there’s a good reason why WriteShop is parent-directed—especially in the elementary levels.
When should my child start writing independently?
It’s a gradual transition from parent-supported writing in the early grades to more independent writing in middle and high school. Rushing a child too soon to independence can backfire through procrastination, poorly written compositions, and an altogether bad attitude towards writing.
Writing is challenging! And young students need the support of an encouraging mentor—you!
Independent writing during elementary years
WriteShop expects more parent involvement during the elementary years. All elementary-age writers still need a parent close by to
- Model and teach.
- Oversee their work.
- Participate with them as needed.
- Praise their efforts.
- Give helpful feedback.
WriteShop expects parent involvement because every child needs guidance and support to succeed with the writing process. The program is fully laid out with activities, games, checklists, rubrics, and even teacher scripts, so it empowers you to be that writing teacher your child needs!
WriteShop Primary requires your guidance for almost all lesson activities. That’s because kindergartners, first graders, and second graders need lots and lots of help and encouragement! In addition, their writing skills are just emerging. So the more involved you are, the more you can make sure they’re getting solid instruction and practice.
,While still expecting a close partnership between parent and child, WriteShop Junior slowly begins to let out the reins in Books E and F. In these levels, children who are ready get to practice greater independence during writing, self-editing, and publishing.
Independent writing during the teen years
Nurturing independence is great! As students enter their middle and high school years, it’s wise to train them to become more responsible for their own schoolwork. This means teaching them to break assignments into chunks, work on multiple projects, and stick to deadlines.
But even if a responsible teen is successful in most academic subjects, they may still flounder when it comes to self-directed writing assignments. That’s often because writing doesn’t come naturally to most students. Therefore, they still need someone to teach them how to write.
Good writing flows out of a partnership between parent (or teacher) and student. The WriteShop I & II program for teens offers the perfect balance of parent involvement and independence.
Once you get to this level, prep time is minimal. Lesson plans follow an orderly, step-by-step fashion—often open-and-go. When you work with your student (first 2 days of each 2-week lesson cycle), you’ll spend about 30 minutes each day. During the second week, plan to set aside two time slots in which to edit and evaluate your teen’s paper.
The rest of the time, teens can work independently unless they need your help.
Where do I go from here?
Start with this Placement Quiz. It will lead you straight to the level that suits your child.
These 3 guides offer tips for identify the best fit if you still need help deciding.
>> Choosing a WriteShop Primary level
>> Choosing a WriteShop Junior level
>> Choosing WriteShop I or II
See what’s covered in each book!
If you have more questions, please reach out!
Call: (888) 854-6284 to speak with one of our placement specialists.
Chat: Use the “Contact Us” box located on the bottom right of your screen.