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If you liked BJU grammar/writing for 6th gr and under, but not for the upper levels..

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Please share what you decided to use instead. We are getting ready to move into the 7th grade level. I have a copy and I know that it is set up differently. We have loved the writing portions and that the grammar is easy to teach and to understand.


*I* have loved that BJU really got my boys writing. They have enjoyed it and learned. I wonder if it has more to do with maturity than the program?!


I am considering Writing Strands to add to our 7th grade BJU. I'd love to hear your thoughts and ideas. I'm open....

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Writing Strands works for many kids, but there are also many who find it extremely dry. That was, unfortunately, our family. It's sad that there is not another program that works like BJU in walking your dc through the writing process...BJU makes it so painless! Yes, there are other programs, I am sure, but none that I have found that really even compare. One that came close was Writing Aids, but even that was not something I found simple to use like BJU. Sigh. Knowing pretty much how you feel because I've been there done that, I wish I had some positive, concrete, use this perfect curriculum, advice. ;) I will say that IEW might be a great idea. I know many are going to tell you that you must purchase the main super-expensive program TWSS, but that is not so. I did that, used it for a while, found it not to my liking, and sold it (at a loss, of course). I then purchased an IEW Student Writing Intensive, Level C (this was for my older boys) and used that with zero problems. Mr. Pudewa does all the teaching for you on the SWI DVDs. So, though it is not at all like BJU, it is a good program to keep your kids writing, showing them a different way to write than taught in BJU.


Another possibility that is very similar to IEW, but has no DVDs and is less expensive, would be Meaningful Composition. I kinda like it better than IEW. I find is a bit more....instructive, I guess. For example, when teaching key word outlining, they tell you to be sure to add the subject and the verb to your outline. Such a very simple, seemingly intuitive concept, but one my ds had not thought of. How simple is THAT! They also have you read the entire paragraph and write the main topic before doing each sentence, which, in essence, is teaching your dc how to summarize a passage. I don't recall IEW teaching that. Anyhow, I find Meaningful Composition very well done.


I, personally, have been using both MC and Classical Writing. Can I just right out say that we hate Classical Writing? But, I know many like it, so you may want to look into that as well. It is not AT ALL like BJU though and is very teacher intensive. It's not something you can just pick up and do...it's way too complicated a program for that.


I would also highly recommend outlining the WTM way. We do that as well, but not daily, or even weekly.


I'm at the point where I want outside help with writing. I have contacted a teacher/relative about tutoring my ds. She is definitely interested, and is highly qualified. We'll see how that goes. I just know I need a break from the stress of seemingly constant writing failure. :001_smile:

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I loved BJU 5th and 6th grade, but really did not like the 7th grade Teacher's manual. It was no help to me at all in teaching. It is really set up for a level of teacher who is in a classroom every day and every year teaching this stuff.


There were a few diagramming assignments, but I preferred more. There were plenty of writing assignments, but I felt that it was a big jump from the detailed instruction of 6th to 7th.


I switched to CLE LA for the grammar and used Jump In for writing as well as an outside class with a retired English teacher. He offered it free in his home! My dd really enjoyed Jump In. It is very thorough and reminded me of how BJU's assignments were set up to do certain things on certain days. Here is a link.


CLE is very thorough. The most beneficial thing for me has been that in the 7th and 8th grade levels of CLE, there are page references beside the exercises. The company has a small hardback English handbook. Those page numbers reference that book. It has helped me so much when I'm not sure why she missed something. Here is a link to the 7th grade materials. The handbook is near the bottom of the page.


It has spelling as a feature, but I don't test my dd over the words. She does all the exercises over them, and it has been a good vocabulary supplement.


CLE has writing assignments, but I don't know what those were like in the 6th grade level and below. DD is doing 8th. She just had to write a speech. She will be doing a research paper very soon. There is a whole light unit on how to do it.


My ds is using CLE and I plan to use it all the way through. I don't know if I will only use their writing. I really liked BJU in those elementary grades, so I might buy their student book just to do the writing assignments.

Edited by mom31257
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I appreciate your responses. I am kind of nervous about BJU 7th grade writing and grammar. I really want it to work. I have loved BJU writing. I think my ds needs more writing instruction. (the instruction is lacking in 7th?)


I'd love to hear other ideas for what to use.

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