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Umm, Do You Think WWE/WWS Is A Stand Alone Writing Curriculum?


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I just watched the

from SWB regarding FLL/WWE and she mentioned that WWE was not intended as a stand alone writing curriculum. I actually thought it was... am I missing the boat here? I was looking at using WWE with my little and WWS with my older next year but now I'm wondering if I should just go with IEW instead.


Advice? Thoughts? Suggestions?

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WWS is definitely a stand alone curriculum as far as I am concerned. But if you have some weaknesses, you might want to augment that specific area. My son could not write summaries, so we did a month of WWE3 before continuing with WWS. We are now on week 12 and I think WWS is awesome!


I have used IEW and WWE, and I prefer IEW for younger children.



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Ruth, I'll have a 4th grader and 8th grader next year. Would you recommend IEW for my 4th grader? Can you share your thoughts on why you prefer IEW for the younder kiddos?


WWE has a number of goals that I see:

1) Get kids to hold words in their heads so they can get them down on paper. (Dictation of very long sentences)

2) Get kids to reduce lots of information into a shortened form (narration/summaries)

3) Expose kids to lots of good literature


If your kids can do #1 and #2, then WWE is very repetitive. It is the same, over and over. (WWS is NOT like this BTW)


IEW has a lot more flexibility, just like any non-scripted, heavily teacher-driven curriculum. Here is my comparison. I am sure others will disagree, and I may not even have all the facts right....


When you use IEW:

1) You rotate between fiction and non-fiction (WWE is only fiction, I think)

2) You choose the source material that is appropriate for your child both in level and interest (WWE picks the source material)

3) You teach them many forms, stories, paraphrases, summaries, reports, multiple source reports, essays (WWE is really just paraphrases/narrations)

4) You teach them paragraph form, essay form, picking titles, note taking (WWE is just narrations)

5) There is a large emphasis on style in IEW, which SWB does not like, but I do. I do not require all the stylistic elements in every paragraph, but encourage them, and it allows us to work towards a goal when editing. (WWE has no style component)

6) You require editing and teach them how to do it (WWE does not)


Major drawback for IEW is that it takes your time as teacher to plan and implement.


For my older child who worked with IEW for 2-3 years, WWS is the perfect fit. I have found that IEW gets repetitive if you do it for >3 years. WWS is a VERY good program that actually teaches the student how to write.


So for my children, I plan to do the following:

Elementary: IEW

Middle school: WWS

High school: Classical Writing


Hope this helps,


Ruth in NZ

Edited by lewelma
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I just watched the
from SWB regarding FLL/WWE and she mentioned that WWE was not intended as a stand alone writing curriculum.


Can you quote her exact words? I just watched that video again and didn't hear anything about WWE not being standalone. :confused: She talked first about the copywork/dictation/narration in FLL not being necessary if your child is doing WWE (FLL is meant as just grammar, not writing also), she said that WWE is basically the WTM writing recommendations written for parents to have more ease of use, and she talked about how if a child couldn't answer the questions for the passage you could break it up into smaller chunks and ask questions after each chunk.


I heard nothing about needing other writing curriculum besides that which is in WWE, nor does the WTM book suggest that.


Yes, I think WWE/WWS are standalone, but you still should use them across the curriculum as you'd use any writing program. WWE does help with this a bit, as it includes fiction, history, science, and poetry passages. The WTM book mentions notebooking in several subjects, which gets the child writing more.


I highly recommend listening to SWB's lecture on teaching elementary writing. It explains the process very well. Also, take a look at the WWS samples to see where you are heading. Some of the things people expect to find in WWE are actually in WWS instead.

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At what point does she say it's not stand-alone?


I use WWE alone with my 1st grader, and WWE/FLL with my 3rd grader. However, since both my kids appear to be capable of original composition, I'm going to have them start keeping a daily journal Jan. 1st in addition. However, I still think they need WWE because it addresses specific skills they still need to improve upon, even though my kids can write.


I never used grammar for grades 1 & 2. I felt like I was able to cover 1st and 2nd grader grammar intuitively as a teacher without a formal curriculum, just while discussing grammar in the context of the rest of their reading and writing. Even FLL3 is a lot of review (in a good way, but I wouldn't have wanted to start any earlier than FLL 3.)

Edited by zenjenn
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I agree that they most certainly are complete writing programs. Maybe you're thinking grammar instead. Although WWE brings up some grammar points it's certainly not a stand alone GRAMMAR program, that's where FLL or another grammar specific program comes in to work with WWE/WWS.


Yes... you were right! I misunderstood... she was talking about WWE not being a stand alone grammar program.


Sorry for the confusion, ladies.:glare: I really appreciate your insight and advice.

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I am really curious about using IEW for the younger kiddos. I looked into IEW last year when I was trying to figure out what to do for writing for 1st grade. I even went to a seminar about it and discussed it with a representative. From what I could gather, IEW really isn't meant for kids younger than 3rd grade. I can see where you could certainly implement elements of IEW before 3rd grade, but I couldn't see paying all that money just to implement mere portions of the curriculum. Is my impression mistaken?

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