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My ds(10) is finishing MCT Paragraph Town and I am looking for the next thing. For those who have BTDT, would you recommend using Lost Tools of Writing first and then moving to Essay Voyage, or doing them in the reverse order? I have heard that they complement each other. Is this true?

 

Thanks,

 

Ruth in NZ

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LTOW is geared toward older students; i.e. 8th, 9th or even 10th. However, you can use it with younger students, especially if they are competent with the following skills: writing from a phrase outline, transition between paragraphs, writing summaries, incorporating quotes, developing openers. Also, expect a younger student to need handholding with the invention work and the elocution. One option is to move on to Essay Voyage as the daily writing work, but use the LTOW invention work for discussing fiction. The invention work is challenging, fun, and excellent prep for formal lit analysis down the road -- way down the road.

 

P.S. I decided to edit my post by adding this. MCT is a modern writing curriculum. LTOW is a classical writing curriulum, so I don't see the two meshing. Instead, I would use a classical writing curriculum; i.e. the progym, as prep if you wanted to add LTOW to your pre-rhetoric English work. Then, I would use LTOW in combination with the progym. The progym would be the composition strand of English, and LTOW would be the literature strand.

Edited by 1Togo
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I am convinced 1Togo that the progymn exercises are most definitely the way we are going to move forward here. My dc have had such a great time writing. The beginning exercises we used in WT1 (we will be moving forward with CC next year - fable / narrative) have made such a difference in them learning to love writing. The pressure is off, the content is there, they just get to learn how to handle, manipulate and create beautiful sentences. My question would be this.. once you work through CC, do you THEN move onto LTOW .. or would it be relevant at some point to stop CC at a certain level and work through LTOW and then move onto the higher levels of CC? That's the part I can't quite figure out. Are they basically one and the same? Do they complement each other, or do they equal each other?

 

As for MCT... we've just about finished Island and while I rarely did all of the writing exercises in it, they did do quite a few of the poems and stories. Next year we will move into Town and again.. I wonder.. is Essay even necessary? Does it add anything to the equation? I don't mind doing things that add to their love of writing. So far Island has felt more like a grammar program to me though. I presume this would change with levels.

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EV's focus is expository writing. You're given topics to research and then write about or you can choose your own from history and science. I find that many of the writing programs have a main focus so it seems you need multiple ones. LToW level 1, albeit a brief introduction to it, seems to be persuasive writing. 1TOGO is the go to (HA HA HA) person for CC. I don't know if it would overlap w/ LToW. I would assume so and you'd do one or the other but you know what happens when you assume....:lol:

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"I am convinced 1Togo that the progymn exercises are most definitely the way we are going to move forward here. My dc have had such a great time writing. The beginning exercises we used in WT1 (we will be moving forward with CC next year - fable / narrative) have made such a difference in them learning to love writing. The pressure is off, the content is there, they just get to learn how to handle, manipulate and create beautiful sentences"

 

Yes, yes, to this. Remove that pressure, and the emerging writer can bloom.

 

"My question would be this.. once you work through CC, do you THEN move onto LTOW .. or would it be relevant at some point to stop CC at a certain level and work through LTOW and then move onto the higher levels of CC? That's the part I can't quite figure out. Are they basically one and the same? Do they complement each other, or do they equal each other?"

 

I would suggest the following if you go the classical route:

 

1. Work through CC Fable, Narrative and Chreia Maxim.

 

2. Follow that with modern essays as per instructions that Mr. Selby is writing.

 

4. At this point, you could add LTOW, but I would not drop CC. You could also wait to add LTOW after Refuation/Confirmation. In either case, LTOW would be the composition strand of English, and LTOW would be the literature strand if you use both. So, that would be two of your student's subjects. Add math,Latin, logic, and science, and you have a full day (just rambling along here with a suggestion).

 

5. When you finish CC, move into rhetoric.

 

I don't know enough about LTOW II to give advice about where it fits. Ummm, maybe that's something for me to think about after I get next year planned.

 

"As for MCT... we've just about finished Island and while I rarely did all of the writing exercises in it, they did do quite a few of the poems and stories. Next year we will move into Town and again.. I wonder.. is Essay even necessary? Does it add anything to the equation? I don't mind doing things that add to their love of writing. So far Island has felt more like a grammar program to me though. I presume this would change with levels."

 

I do not think Essay Voyage is necessary if you follow the plan I have outlined above. The progym exercises, modern essay work, and LTOW will cover the same skills and more.

 

P.S. LTOW I does focus on one type of persuasive essay, but the key with LTOW is to look at it as something more than a writing curriculum. Yes, it teaches writing skills, but LTOW teaches the student to think deeply about issues, the meaning of terms, the motivation of characters, etc. With many students, their writing is simply a reflection of what their writing mentor feeds to them. The invention work in LTOW offers the student concrete tools for original thinking. Also, LTOW can be used with issues related to history, science, and currents events. Ditto CC after Fable and Narrative.

 

Btw, the depth and breadth of writing skills covered in the progym eliminates the need for multiple programs. For example, in Fable and Narrative, the student learns the following:

 

1) Writing outlines and writing from those outlines

2) 20 figures of description, including dialogue, description of characters

3) Reducing a narrative; i.e. precis writing, working first from a short Fable to lengthy stories

4) Writing in reverse, which give practice writing in different verb tenses

5) Writing from a different point of view

6) Basic lit elements, including a one-sentence summary of the plot

 

In addition, the student works on sentence structure and vocabulary development in every lesson.

Edited by 1Togo
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Thank you 1Togo.. I appreciate the clarification. I cannot WAIT to get my hands on CC based on all the samples. We finished WT and the kids were like... is there more? This summer I thought we would enjoy working through parts of Writer's Jungle and Unjournaling. Then we will dive back in this August. Your advice has been most helpful to me and I am loving the progym. exercises..

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Thanks for this,

 

I am not sure that CC would be a good fit for my son (I'll explain below). But I would love to see it to be sure. Is there a place to preview CC?

 

My son does not like writing stories or doing personal narratives. He is a Facts type of guy. Everything I have read about CC seems to focus on the wrong style of writing for him. Also, he will be in 6th grade for the time period I am looking for which is why I thought LToW might work. He has done IEW for 3 years and Paragraph Town this year. He can write an outline and write from an outline. He can structure a paragraph and an "essay" (more like a 5 paragraph report as there is no true thesis). He can connect paragraphs together well, but does have trouble writing conclusions. He has a nice style with great vocab and complex structure. What he is missing is how to come up with a thesis. Which is why I was considering LToW.

 

What I like about Essay Voyage is that it has classical essays to read and study. It does not, however, give specific instructions as to how to write like IEW or LtoW do. Which is why I thought EV and LToW. might dove tail. One to study classical writing, and one to teach you how to write a persuasive essay.

 

Perhaps I could integrate LToW 1, 2 and EV over 2 years total. Is this realistic or even a good idea? I have also considered doing EV and Killagon (probably high school level) for this year (6th), and then doing LToW for 7th and 8th.

 

Thanks for any comments.

 

Ruth in NZ

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