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help me help my daughter with her writing!!!!


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Daughter, age 14, has very little writing experience.  I bought and we started using the book "The power in your hands"....which is supposed to ease a child with very little writing background into learning how to write non-fiction.

 

OK...so the first step was to take a topic they gave her "should teenagers have credit cards" and go through a series of steps towards a paper.  She didn't really like that topic and so we picked a different one.  (It appeared to be one that she would have an opinon one way or the other on)....so she picked Homeschooling: good or bad.

 

She needed 5 points to support her opinion.  So we struggled through that...but finally came up with a bunch.  Then she had to pick 5 from the group.  She also didn't want to try too hard, but finally picked 5.  (she didn't really care which 5, but she picked 5).  Then she needed to put them in order.  Did that. 

 

The step today was to come up with a "hook" to begin her paper with....and they gave her 5 different ways to do that.  Question, story, fact, quotation and thought provoking statement.  They gave her an example of each as well.  Her assignment was to  take her topic and give an example of each "hook" that she might consider using. 

 

That was a total disaster.  I am not sure if she seriously "can't" do it.  Or if she doesn't want to or what.  She doesn't have any learning disablities...but I do know that she sometimes doesn't want to try very hard...but when she wants to, she can do it.

 

SO, do I just send her to her room to do this?  Do I sit with her and hold her hand...knowing she hasn't had a lot of writing in her past? or something different.   She is a stuborn child. 

 

What would you do?  ask me more questions if you want more clarity on sometihng.  I just need your help. 

 

thanks.

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This might exactly what you DO NOT want to use, but IEW was great for my non-writer. I hear complaints aboit the stiffness of the "formula" but that is exactly what my student needed. You might want to give it a look. Just my 2 cents,

I was going to say the same thing. Loose and gentle don't always (usually?) work for struggling writers. Maybe try something more structured to first teach her the mechanics of writing; the ideas in the book you mention sound like they would overwhelm anyone who doesn't already have a firm grasp of building a paper.

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Haven't watched it but here's a youtube link

 

 

 

 

 

By the way. There's nothing wrong with both of you workng on an essay together, you actually doing a good portion of the writing and ideas at first. My BJUP lesson plan suggests that the CLASS develops a sample essay before each student develops on individually.

 

So why not suggest to her to open with some of the more ridiculous misconceptions about homeschoolers or something ludicrous? My kids also like writing essays about silly topics like "Unicorn or Dragon: Which Mythological Creature is Cooler"

 

Here;s some more help

 

 

http://bid4papers.com/blog/hook-for-essay/

 

PS. I am a  freelance writer. Sometimes, i jsut can't think of how to start the first paragraph. So I write the middle of the essay, the MEAT of the artilcle and THEN go back and try to think of an interesting way to begin.

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By the way. There's nothing wrong with both of you workng on an essay together, you actually doing a good portion of the writing and ideas at first. My BJUP lesson plan suggests that the CLASS develops a sample essay before each student develops on individually.

 

So why not suggest to her to open with some of the more ridiculous misconceptions about homeschoolers or something ludicrous? My kids also like writing essays about silly topics like "Unicorn or Dragon: Which Mythological Creature is Cooler"

.

I agree with this. Help her as much as she needs until she's comfortable doing it on her own.

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  • 2 years later...

I am the OP and we chose to use Essentials in Writing...and I can sum it all up in "I wish I would have used it sooner".  It was almost like a miracle. She was writing without tears, without crumbling at the foot of the desk.....without  arms up in hopelessness.  I could hardly believe it.  Was she writing at her grade level? No...but she was writing and that was the first MAJOR step.

 

Skipping ahead to now (the thread was started in 2015).....we are still using EIW....and the grade gap is closing....so that is wonderful.  By the time she finishes High School I expect she will be right on course. 

 

Hope it was ok that I responded to this "zombie" thread.

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I am the OP and we chose to use Essentials in Writing...and I can sum it all up in "I wish I would have used it sooner". It was almost like a miracle. She was writing without tears, without crumbling at the foot of the desk.....without arms up in hopelessness. I could hardly believe it. Was she writing at her grade level? No...but she was writing and that was the first MAJOR step.

 

Skipping ahead to now (the thread was started in 2015).....we are still using EIW....and the grade gap is closing....so that is wonderful. By the time she finishes High School I expect she will be right on course.

 

Hope it was ok that I responded to this "zombie" thread.

Thanks so much for the update! Awesome news!

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I'm so happy to hear this! (Especially since I'm looking at EIW for my struggling writer).

 

My daughter said that what really helped he was that the teacher showed examples which were clear and understandable.  I also think taking me out of the picture (mostly), really helped.  

 

We also started one level lower than her grade...so she was a 9th grader and we did level 8.  Mostly because one of the first assignments in level 9 was very similar to one I just had tried to get her to do and she struggled so badly....I wanted to her start out fresh and new.  So we were actually able to zip through a year book in a semester. I wasn't as hard on her writing as I am now.  I just wanted her to write...not be intimidated, not get scared or overwhelmed.  So that helped us more quickly too.  So she did book 9 last year...( her sophomore year) and next year book 10.  I am not worried she won't do book 12....I am just glad she is writing now.

 

One thing I really appreciate about EIW is they have a live chat on their website and I have chatted with a rep many times about the program and about questions I had. They have been so helpful.  I even chatted one day with Matthew (the teacher) just because he happened to be walking through at the time and the rep thought he could answer my question better than she could...so  that was kind of cool.

 

Good luck.  Hope it works as great for you as it did for us.

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