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... after a winter/spring of keeping things floating along here, I'm coming up for air and lining our ducks up so we're strong for 4th grade this fall.  A. is a reluctant writer, currently perfectly capable of writing a few cursive sentences and working with WWE3 and Classical Writing (we type the CW).  We have not been doing written summaries for history, just oral. 

 

I'd like to move him to writing at the WTM-suggested end-of-third-grade-goal of summaries that "resemble one- or two-paragraph compositions".   Here's my imagined progression of skills.  

 

1.  I write his summaries, then dictate them back. 

edited after feedback:

2.  -- what next?  he does an oral summary, then I help him remember the sentences? --

3.  He writes his few sentences.

2. We put keywords for each sentence up on the board, along with hard-to-spell words.  He writes from this.

3.  A. writes an outline on his paper, I put hard-to-spell words down, he writes from that. 

4. Work on something like a paragraph -- think about a general sentence intro, and a final sentence that touches on and extends the main theme, in a three-ish sentence format. 

5.  Work on beefing up our paragraph middles. 

 

How does that sound?  Any thoughts or points of concern? 

 

thank you!  :)

 

 

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I like it. Mine only got to that milestone by the end of fourth grade, however, and only one of them is strong at it. The other is better when the topic is science.

I found with the boy who hated history, and has trouble keeping sequences of events or ideas in his head, writing a sort of semi-outline on the whiteboard was useful, and I also found it useful to write hard to spell words and names on the board.

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My 4th grader is a reluctant writer. He finds it easier to write the history summaries in note form, then group the points together and write paragraphs from the notes.

If he writes off his head without notes, the paragraphs don't sound coherent, more like a brain dump.

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I like it. Mine only got to that milestone by the end of fourth grade, however, and only one of them is strong at it. The other is better when the topic is science.

I found with the boy who hated history, and has trouble keeping sequences of events or ideas in his head, writing a sort of semi-outline on the whiteboard was useful, and I also found it useful to write hard to spell words and names on the board.

 

A. is STEM-oriented too.  Perhaps I ought to look to his science for our more-advanced summary work ... the semi-outline idea is terrific, and Arcadia suggests something like this below, and getting the hard to spell words down for him will definitely make things run more smoothly.  That is very useful & practical feedback!

 

My 4th grader is a reluctant writer. He finds it easier to write the history summaries in note form, then group the points together and write paragraphs from the notes.

If he writes off his head without notes, the paragraphs don't sound coherent, more like a brain dump.

 

I was thinking of this, esp. because his Classical Writing work is outline-first and he's very familiar with it, but thought it might be not-good for some reason.  But it is very sane & also how I'd like him to be able to write later.  Also he'll probably sit the state writing tests at the end of 4th and being able to jot an outline would prove valuable there I am sure. 

 

okay, I'm editing the original post to reflect these ideas.  whoo-hoo -- I am so encouraged!  writing can totally kick us in the tushie 'round here. 

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Also he'll probably sit the state writing tests at the end of 4th and being able to jot an outline would prove valuable there I am sure.

If you are in California, the 4th grade writing tests were scrapped this year so my boy didn't have state test for writing.

Outline is always a usual skill for the sciences as well. We go from bullet form to complete sentences.

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