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happymainemom

Any used the curriculum Cover Story?

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I'm looking for something different for my 11th grader to do for LA.  I realize this is a middle school curriculum, but she has some processing/IQ deficits and needs a simple, interesting choice for this next year.  I have drilled grammar into her as much as I think she can handle and we need to put the focus elsewhere. 

 

Could someone provide a review for this?

 

Thank you!

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We did about 1/3 of it before my daughter lost interest. She's not fond of creative writing, didn't like having videos as the main instruction, and generally just was really tired of it. it was a lot of work and commitment and it just wasn't a good fit for us. Many people seem to love it.

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This is a timely thread for me.

 

Thanks for the update, deerforest.  I was wondering how you made out with the program.  

 

I just looked earlier today - it is scheduled for 24 weeks.  That's a long time, if it's not a good fit.

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Yeah, I was kinda wondering if 24 weeks was a good thing.....

 

I thought maybe it could be done September through December (lots of weeks off there) and then March thru May.  That way there are many weeks off to do some other things.  Or maybe it would be better to 3 weeks then a week off?  Maybe that would break it up? 

 

She likes videos, loves the steampunk look, has a very hard time reading and writing is a boring drill.  I sure wish I could test drive it.  I hate purchasing new stuff only to have it "fail".  pfttttt.

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Yes, I have. It's been a couple years though. Fabulous for kids that enjoy creative writing! It doesn't only cover creative writing, but there is so much in it that a kid who doesn't enjoy it will not last long.

 

There are three video lessons a week if you stick to their schedule. The length varies, and the interview one could be split into extra days. Each lesson has exercises in the workbook, which vary from writing haiku to pre-planning larger stories and all sorts between. Not one week exactly looks like another. In addition to the main lessons there's a journal where they are supposed to write five sentences five times a week, with particular assignments. At the beginning it's five questions, later on its dialogue, and so on. At first this was just plain fun for my kids (the ones who like creative writing), after awhile it got more challenging, but it really did stretch their ability and helped them think their way out of being stuck writing larger stories later on.

 

There's nothing babyish about this program that would turn off an older kid. I had early high school kids take it for the fun of it and work on essays on the side. They completed it in the scheduled 24 weeks and went onto OYAN the following year. When my younger kids worked in it I stretched it out and slowed it down for them.

 

If you include the optional grammar lessons that takes it to 28 weeks.

 

The kids that completed the whole program gave it two very hearty thumbs up. One kid found out he really, really couldn't stand anything resembling creative writing and switched programs, and another was young and just dabbled in parts of it. I'm planning on using the whole thing again with that young one this year; she's 7th now and I expect she'll do great.

Edited by SilverMoon
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I have used Cover Story with both my girls. It was a good fit for my older dd in 7th grade. She was a get-it-done student and not working well for me, so out-sourcing to dvd lessons and a workbook worked well. She enjoyed the creativity of making her own magazine. I thought the variety of assignment types and the level of output required prepared her well for returning to public school the following year. Dd12 used it this year at the end of 6th grade - we started in March and stopped for summer about a third of the way in. She loves creative writing and is finding the assignments too confining. We will do NaNoWriMo this coming fall, and maybe return to Cover Story in the Spring if dd12 wants to finish it. So although dd12 didn't really respond Cover Story like her sister, I am a big fan of this curriculum. Mr S is a very engaging teacher and the lessons seemed really on target for 7th grade. What does your dd think? Can you get your hands on a copy and show it to her?

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We are currently using it. I will admit though, it's kind of something we squeeze in rather than something that we do all the time. I will probably have them put it away for the school year since we are doing CC; they can pick it back up again in the summer next year.


Neither of my girls are head over for it, but I feel like it's been good. I like the set up. I think our issue was the lack of consistency, something I really couldn't help considering our summer schedule. I did try it too early last year and it bombed. I would definitely wait until you have a 6th grader, but encourage waiting until closer to 7th or 8th grade to do it.

Edited by AnnaM

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