Kim Kautzer | Homeschool Speaker

About Kim

2014-Kim-Kautzer-avatarLike most of you, I’m the wearer of many hats. We may not all wear the same hats, but each one we slap onto our heads identifies those areas that make us unique! Though my homeschooling days are behind me now, my hours are far from quiet as I serve WriteShop customers, oversee product development, travel to homeschool conferences, and (of course) write!

In addition to the blog, my articles have appeared in prominent homeschooling magazines including The Old Schoolhouse, Home School Enrichment, Practical Homeschooling, and Homeschooling Today.

When I’m not working, you might catch me tinkering with the Sunday crossword, reading a mystery novel, or rummaging through my pantry in search of chocolate. If there’s no chocolate, cookies will do.

With my amazing husband of 42 years, we have three grown kids with wonderful spouses, and a passel of grandchildren who hang out with me as often as I’ll take ‘em! The oldest is 17, and he towers over me. How did that happen?

Having learned the hard way to teach my own writing-phobic son to like (and eventually love) writing, it’s become my joy to help other parents feel more equipped to teach writing at home. It is my prayer that our gracious God will continue using me to encourage each of you as you forge your own path.

Need a Speaker for Your Homeschool Event?

Is your homeschool conference or co-op group planning to include some practical, writing-related workshops? With over twelve years of speaking experience at homeschool conventions and co-ops around the country, I can present a number of different sessions aimed at helping parents teach writing at home.

Kim Kautzer
(909) 989-5576

Email

Testimonials

Kim is a dynamic and inspirational speaker! With her experience and wisdom, Kim is highly qualified in equipping and transforming apprehensive parents and reluctant students into masters of language arts.
Sharra Badgley via LinkedIn

Kim is a delight to work with…. Her speaking sessions and articles are encouraging and motivating for the homeschool audience. 
Cindy Horton via LinkedIn

What Parents Are Saying

  • Practical, easy, fun!
  • Outstanding presenter! The best!
  • Wish we had more time!
  • Inspiring!
  • Great ideas.
  • Thank you for such encouragement.
  • Great info. Best speaker I heard today!

Kim Kautzer’s Workshop Topics

SUGGESTED SPEAKING TOPICS: TEACHING THE WRITING PROCESS

Inspiring Successful Writers, Part 1 (Grades K-6)
Your  kindergartner loves to tell stories but can hardly hold a pencil. Your 9-year-old is producing a novel. And the blank page reduces your 11-year-old to tears. What’s a parent to do? Kim will encourage and equip you to teach each of your children, whether reluctant or advanced, by breaking the writing process into manageable steps. Above all, discover how to infuse teaching time with fun so that your children will find joy in writing.

Inspiring Successful Writers, Part 2 (Grades 7-12)
Parents agree——inspiring kids to write well is one of the most intimidating tasks you face. Even if it’s your weakest area, you’ll be relieved to learn that you CAN train your junior high and high schoolers to write. So come discover a fresh approach to teaching composition skills and elements of style. Learn to objectively edit and evaluate writing so you can encourage your struggling, reluctant learner while challenging the one who’s more articulate and motivated.

NOTE: The following workshops cover similar material as Inspiring Successful Writers 1 and 2 but approach the writing process from different perspectives.

Help! I Have a Reluctant Writer!
“I hate writing!” Is this the cheerful response you get when you give your kids an assignment? Then join Kim as she shares 10 common stumbling blocks to writing, and discover how to help your kids overcome their anxiety, fear, or lack of confidence. Learn how the steps of the writing process can actually motivate your most reluctant children, and gain tips and tools for encouraging their success!

Teaching Writing: The Big Picture
While homeschoolers tend to excel in so many areas, writing remains an admitted weakness. This session presents a general overview of writing for K-12, with the goal of encouraging and inspiring the insecure parent. The workshop covers the steps of the writing process; what to teach and when; the importance of editing; content, style, and mechanics; and more. It’s a look at the big picture with helpful and applicable tips a parent can use right away.

The Writing Process: Inch by Inch, It’s a Cinch!
Do you have a reluctant writer? Getting this child to put pencil to paper can be challenging enough, but expecting him to embrace the whole writing process is another thing altogether. Each step of the process, from brainstorming to final draft, is important, but kids often think of these “extra steps” as time wasters. Kim shares practical tips for teaching children of all ages to plan, draft, self-edit, revise, and write a polished story or essay they’re proud to share! You’ll also come away feeling more encouraged—and equipped—to take your children on a journey through the writing process.

ADDITIONAL TOPICS: BEYOND THE BASICS

Writing Strategies for Special Needs Kids
It’s not just your child: truth be told, most kids struggle with writing at some level. But when a child learns with difficulty, the challenges magnify. Poor spelling, illegible handwriting, attention and processing disorders, and physical limitations affect the ability to communicate on paper. The result is disorganized writing that’s riddled with errors. The good news? You know and care about your child more than anyone—there is much you can do! If your child has mild to moderate learning challenges, Kim offers practical steps you can take to instill both confidence and writing skills in your LD child.

NEW! Stretching Your Gifted Writer
Not every child is a reluctant writer. How do you challenge “that child” who writes for fun, uses advanced vocabulary, or expresses mature thoughts in great detail? While siblings or friends struggle with everything from generating ideas to basic punctuation and paragraphing, gifted kids enjoy the freedom of trying new techniques and expressing themselves in fresh ways. Kim helps you tailor your teaching to meet the needs of your gifted elementary and tween writers with ideas that include writing in different genres, writing across the curriculum, outside-the-box journaling, and poetry.

Writing: Make It Relevant! Make It Fun!
Writing can be practical and fun for all subjects! Whether you homeschool with unit studies or are simply looking for fresh ways to explore a topic, writing across the curriculum is perfect for tying writing into other areas of interest. This workshop will leave you with a wealth of ideas not just for compositions, but for projects and activities that combine writing with art, music, drama, poetry, history, science, and more. Ideal for parents teaching mixed ages and grades.

How to Motivate and Nurture Young Writers
What’s the secret to raising enthusiastic writers? Hook them while they’re young with fun, appealing activities that teach foundational writing skills and help ward off stubbornness and bad attitudes. Kim will share engaging prewriting games, clever brainstorming ideas, and creative publishing projects that will make your K-6th graders eager to write and proud to be published. It’s never too soon—or too late—to get your kids excited about writing!

How Do I Grade My Kids’ Writing?
Whether they’re 7 or 17, children see their writing as extensions of themselves: “Criticize my writing, criticize me.” So, how do we offer suggestions without crushing their spirits? Is it possible to take the subjectivity out of editing and grading? The answer to both is YES! Not only does Kim give practical tips for evaluating progress, she demonstrates the importance of teaching students to become self-editors. Identify your own fears and insecurities about giving feedback, and learn how much to say (and how to say it) in a way that equips your children to become better writers.

NEW! 101 Ways {and Reasons} to Use Journaling in Your Homeschool
Journaling is a popular word these days. After all, stress-free writing with no advance prep is pretty appealing! But is journaling an effective writing tool? Should this type of writing be edited or graded? Is journaling good for my kids? Kim answers these questions—and more—as she shares dozens of journaling methods and benefits, such as how to enhance history and nature studies through journal activities and how to use creative writing prompts to spark joy in your most reluctant writers.

NEW! Brainstorming Tools: Teaching Kids to Plan Before They Write
Beginning a project well can greatly increase the chance of success. The blank page is intimidating and overwhelming when kids don’t know what to say. But when they learn to plan their writing in advance, the task becomes much more doable. Kim will introduce creative ways to brainstorm with K-8th graders using simple graphic organizers that help them choose topics, solve story problems, organize ideas, and communicate more effectively. After all, well begun is half done!

Games and Activities That Boost Writing Skills
Who knew you could use games and hands-on activities to teach writing? As you step into this lively workshop, leave your preconceived notions of writing drudgery at the door, and get ready to have some fun! We’ll play engaging games that grow vocabulary, teach writing skills, and make new concepts easier to remember. When hands-on activities become part of your lessons, the kids will hardly notice you’re learning together. Not only will they become more productive and fluent writers, they’ll actually start looking forward to writing time!

The Lazy Student: What’s a Mom to Do?
No matter how much time you allow, why is it that your student waits till the very last minute to tackle a writing assignment? Is it procrastination . . . or just plain laziness? Either way, you can’t seem to figure out how to motivate this child! In this session, Kim helps you discover the similarities and differences between procrastination and laziness, and offers practical advice on helping your dawdler set—and meet—goals and deadlines.

Growing Your Child’s Writing Vocabulary
Whether you have infants, teens, or in-betweens, Kim shares dozens of ideas to help you develop, encourage, and strengthen your children’s vocabulary. In particular, discover how simple tools such as reading aloud, asking questions, and playing word games will boost your students’ ability to use words more powerfully and precisely in their writing.

COLLEGE PREP WRITING TOPICS (Choose One)

College Prep: Are Writing and Study Skills on Track?
Is writing one of those subjects you keep starting and stopping? Do your teens drag their feet, fail to finish assignments, or complain night and day? Or are you the one who has trouble following through with lesson planning or editing? For high schoolers, there’s more to planning for college than simply getting accepted, and becoming a good writer is at the top of the list! Learn how you can equip your kids by encouraging strong writing skills and good study habits that will serve them well in college.

Writing Skills: More Important Than Ever!
For better or worse, your teen’s writing skills can influence his future in college and beyond. Because of poor skills, many students must take remedial writing courses in college–if they get admitted at all. And in the workplace, employers are not only passing over applicants with below-average writing skills, they consider writing ability a key factor when offering promotions. As a homeschooling parent, you can prepare your child for college and the work force by teaching fundamental writing skills now, while there’s still time. Join Kim for an encouraging seminar as she offers tips and suggestions to help you prepare your student for the future.

OTHER TOPICS

When I Am Weak: Homeschooling Through Crisis or Depression
Homeschooling can be challenging enough when the sea is smooth and calm. But what do you do when depression, a wayward teen, or some other personal crisis blows in the dark clouds and stirs up a few towering waves? Is it even possible to navigate the waters of homeschooling when you can barely stay in the boat yourself? Our trials are unique, but God is constant and unwavering. Kim shares her personal story, bringing light and hope to your situation, tips for staying on course in a storm, and encouragement that you can finish well.