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I am a terrible writing teacher!

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I am not sure what is wrong with my brain but I get really overwhelmed when it comes to any kind of writing. It was the same way when I was in school. I just can't seem to sort through the whole process. My son actually is pretty good at writing. I am thinking he may be better served with one of those onling writing classes where someone who has a clue corrects his work and gives guidance. Does anyone know the names of any of those?

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I think providing feedback on writing is one of the most challenging aspects of homeschooling, so you are not alone.


My ds13 is currently enrolled in Laurel Tree Tutorial's Intro to Composition class (for 6th-8th graders). It is an annual class, so it is currently closed for this year. I've also looked at, but haven't used, WriteAtHome. They offer both annual and semester courses.


Here are links:






A couple other considerations might be The Potter's School English classes or Write Guide. While we've used TPS for Science, we haven't used their English classes, so, other than saying I like TPS in general, I can't really comment of their English classes. I haven't used Write Guide either, but hear nice things about them.






HTH, STacy

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I just can't seem to sort through the whole process.


Maybe nothing is wrong with your brain - maybe no one has ever explained the whole process to you in a way you can understand? I was that way until about two years ago, when I first heard Susan Wise Bauer's writing lectures. Maybe have a look at them - there are three, and then one on talking and writing about literature - available at Peace Hill Press, for download. The whole process, from grade 1 to 12. In simple terms. :D

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I am a reluctant writer and a reluctant writing teacher. Ds is also a reluctant writer. We used Write Shop for 6th-7th-8th grade. You may read my review here. I liked it because it provided all the hand-holding we both needed.


We tried Home2Teach for three 6 week sessions. It was a waste of money. It was shocking how little feedback ds got. There are many online writing programs. Some are not worth the money. Do your best to investigate before hand. I've heard mixed reviews of Potter's School English classes (Advanced Composition gets positive reviews though) and read mixed reviews about Write At Home. (search the boards)


I've only heard positive reviews of Laurel Tree. I'm planning on enrolling ds in their high school composition class next year.


SWB came out with all her writing materials after I had started down the Write Shop path. If I was to start all over again, I would definitely check her materials out.


Good luck!

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I could have written your post myself just one month ago. Then I made the decision to try IEW student writing intensive B for "tying up loose ends" in writing for ds's last semester b/f high school. High school is when I had planned to hire a tutor to teach writing b/c I did not have the confidence to be objective as a mom/teacher in his writing. I wasn't going to mess up writing by attempting to teach it myself. (btw, dh and I put being able to communicate clearly and persuasively at the top of our list of hs goals since we believe the lack of these skills hindered us in our professions.)

I had no idea all that IEW would offer! It is easy to follow and completely "objectifies" the process of evaluating writing for me and for our students (both ds13 and dd11 use it.) Just the free articles on the IEW website helped me b/f our package came. I was so excited the week the package came that I wrote it on my calendar as an "event" that happened!

Dh is sold! He loves where the company is coming from (he has no interest in looking at the curriculum itself...he completely defers to mo in that area.)

I could go on and on. IEW has changed my attitude 100%, it is as revolutionary to our homeschool as WTM was when I found it 9 years ago!


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Wow. Relax!


It seems that some kids have a natural ability for writing while with others you will be lucky to get them to write a book report.


Case in point, my DD age 7 loves to write. Anything, anywhere, anytime. One of her favorite things to do is use up all the printer paper writing "books".


And then there is my DS age 12. I have long ago accepted that he will not be winning any Pulitzer Prizes in journalism. And that is OK! This year he is working through the Jump In curriculum so at least he is exposed to different writing styles and has some experience with them. But in all honesty I am happy that he can address an envelope and write a simple thank you!

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I feel totally overwhelmed in teaching my kids to write as well. My reason is different than yours, though. I am a natural writer. I don't analyze it out. I don't think of a topic sentence then come up with supporting sentences. I didn't know you had to do that. It all just comes out of me. I am assuming that I did it right as I always got 90% or higher on my essays in college and I went to two colleges plus did distance learning at a university.


I don't know how to break up the writing process into sizable chunks in order to teach it to my kids. So I am educating myself in this process. I am reading as much as I can about how to write a paragraph. I just learned that the Teaching Company has a new lecture series on how to write an essay thal looks very good so I think I will be purchasing that. I feel a bit more empowered to teach this to my kids. The feelings of overwhelming-ness is dissipating now that I am learning about this for myself.

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