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I'm asking about 7th grade, even though this is the high school board, because I want to hear from the experienced high school parents who tend to hang out only here.

 

Are there any serious long-term problems with using IEW that I should know about before putting my daughter in a class next year? 

 

 

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We've used IEW and it really helped to polish and pull together dd's writing. I feel she's a strong writer thanks to this class, so I would recommend IEW to anyone considering it. 

 

Just a note, WTMA considers two years of IEW to be sufficient for entrance into the Rhetoric I class, so seeing as the program is mentioned specifically, I think says something about it being an acceptable class. WTMA courses are quality classes so they aren't going to put in something soft or bad as a pre-req. 

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It's absolutely fine for 7th grade, or later if the student hasn't had much formal writing. It's formulaic, but great for students who need that.

 

The problem is that sometimes students have trouble developing their own style and handling different kinds of paragraphs in a more flexible way. A time comes when they have to focus on logical arguments and meaning, and the core IEW program doesn't address that as well.

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I would agree with Julie of KY that there is a time to move on from IEW. This would depend on how many years of IEW your student has already had. Please don't misunderstand, I love it, but there is more to writing than what IEW offers. If your child has had several years of IEW, then I recommend doing a different program for next year.

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We used IEW from 5th-8th grade. 9th grade we're moving on. Though we're debating whether to move back - LOL!

 

My 9th grader is using WriteatHome for Composition this semester and his writing coach oohs and aahs over his writing. And this from a boy whose least favorite subject is writing. So I'd say it helps tremendously to shape some early writing skills.

 

For those that moved on from IEW - when did you move on? After what?

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We used IEW from 5th-8th grade. 9th grade we're moving on. Though we're debating whether to move back - LOL!

 

My 9th grader is using WriteatHome for Composition this semester and his writing coach oohs and aahs over his writing. And this from a boy whose least favorite subject is writing. So I'd say it helps tremendously to shape some early writing skills.

 

For those that moved on from IEW - when did you move on? After what?

 

We're moving on for 10th. I'm hoping to do the essay course with her over the summer and then she will take WTMA Rhetoric I in the fall. I am hoping she will move into it fine, but worse case she can more into their prep course instead. Part of what I like about WTMA is they let you move levels with no penalty so it makes it less risky! We've only done IEW for two years, but it's been a great fit for us. It moved her out of the "cutesy" creative writing crap she picked up in the GT classes in public school junior high and has made her a concise, coherent writer. 

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We did 2 years of IEW in upper elementary / middle school.

Just to get dd that far she no longer fears a white piece paper / screen.

 

Learning the keyword outline idea still helps us in other areas.

 

After that we changed to Bravewriter, which was definetly something she needed at that moment.

We will still use it this year. But maybe we will take a brake next year to prepare us for the 12th grade exam EFL.

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It's absolutely fine for 7th grade, or later if the student hasn't had much formal writing. It's formulaic, but great for students who need that.

 

The problem is that sometimes students have trouble developing their own style and handling different kinds of paragraphs in a more flexible way. A time comes when they have to focus on logical arguments and meaning, and the core IEW program doesn't address that as well.

even the essay or window to the world or upper level writing from IEW?

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I wanted to add one other plus for IEW for jr high or early high school- they teach note taking. The programs we tried previously did not do this in any sort of organized (or effective) manner. In fact I had dd take the WTMA study skills course specifically because it was a skill being left out of our other writing courses. And when I say note taking I mean actual, real note taking for live lectures, not just "let's make some 3x5 note cards for our research paper."

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I used IEW for many years (and it was just what we needed) We then moved to Brave Writer online classes and they have been excellent for my family. We are also more and more using a lot of BW philosophy in my house to teach writing although I've always leaned that way even though IEW is at the other end of the spectrum.

 

 

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I have used IEW all the way through high school. I started it with all my children in 6th grade. In the middle school years, we used the basic IEW SWI and themed writing type programs. In high school, we kept with it, but used the advanced programs: essays, research reports, how to write a novel, rhetoric, etc. My two older kids have later taken college English classes and their professors are always very impressed with their writing abilities!

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I wanted to add one other plus for IEW for jr high or early high school- they teach note taking. The programs we tried previously did not do this in any sort of organized (or effective) manner. In fact I had dd take the WTMA study skills course specifically because it was a skill being left out of our other writing courses. And when I say note taking I mean actual, real note taking for live lectures, not just "let's make some 3x5 note cards for our research paper."

 

Not to downplay the need for live lecture note-taking, but for students who are on a college-prep track, I think that advanced note-taking for research papers (not just some notes on a 3x5 card) is also an important skill that shouldn't be dismissed or overlooked.

 

Writing with Skill is my favorite for this. Students learn how to take different types of notes for different topoi, and these pre-writing skills greatly help in their thinking and their organization so that their writing is more logical. The lessons help students avoid plagiarism, save research time, and tell the difference between common knowledge and what needs a citation. I feel like these types of note-taking skills are incredibly helpful tools. 

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I have used IEW all the way through high school. I started it with all my children in 6th grade. In the middle school years, we used the basic IEW SWI and themed writing type programs. In high school, we kept with it, but used the advanced programs: essays, research reports, how to write a novel, rhetoric, etc. My two older kids have later taken college English classes and their professors are always very impressed with their writing abilities!

 

Can you expound which IEW courses you took in high school, and which years? I'm all ears!  :bigear:

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We have been successful with IEW. My oldest did SWI-B(5), Ancient Writing Lessons(6), SICC-B(7th), Lost Tools of Writing (8), Writing Aids and and 6 weeks of an online class(9), SICC-C (10) and now has a 93 average in AP English Language.  He went from throwing himself on the floor crying over writing, to a strong writer.  None of his online teachers have ever had a problem with his writing (well, other than when he doesn't try very hard--but that is not IEW's fault).  His writing is not formulaic.  IEW says to move away from the strict checklist after 3 years.  I would start each year after the first 3 with a review, but only require things broadly--like no more than 2 sentence opener that are the same in a row or go back and replace 2 verbs in each paragraph with stronger choices.  He internalized how to write a variety of sentences and has wonderful voice now.

 

IEW, for my ds's at least, is a wonderful way to get kids up and running with writing.  I agree that it's goal of the basic program isn't the deep thinking part of writing, but Windows to the World is wonderful for that in Literary Analysis.  I think most kids need the push to think deeper and write with more detail and thought.

 

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We have been successful with IEW. My oldest did SWI-B(5), Ancient Writing Lessons(6), SICC-B(7th), Lost Tools of Writing (8), Writing Aids and and 6 weeks of an online class(9), SICC-C (10) and now has a 93 average in AP English Language.  

 

This is wonderful to hear. We plan also to take AP Eng Lang in 11th and are trying to decide what to do for 10th - whether to go back to IEW after taking if off this year. Where are you taking AP Eng Lang?

 

He internalized how to write a variety of sentences and has wonderful voice now.

 

I agree. My ds after SWI-A (5), SICC-A (6), SICC-B (7), EE & Speech Boot Camp (8) and moving to WriteatHome (9) this year - also has quite a voice. Not formulaic at all, but you see the progression of their skill and their ability to vary sentence structure to make for interesting writing. I'm a big fan!

 

After trying and failing with Windows to the World this year, we switched to WAH. But thinking of moving back to IEW next year. Maybe the high school essay intensive or research paper or even SICC-C - I'd love to hear others' opinions on that who are farther down the high school path...

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even the essay or window to the world or upper level writing from IEW?

 

 

Those aren't the core of the IEW program. Andrew Pudewa initially developed Teaching Writing with Structure and Style based on a writing program used at the college level by a history professor. Then they did the Student Writing Intensive and Student Writing Intensive Continued, and the history-based programs. All of those are based on Teaching Writing with Structure and Style.

 

The more advanced books have a very different approach, and are more appropriate for teens who are writing fluently.

 

My youngest used IEW from 3rd-8th in classes, and then joined a local high school class that combines history, literature, and writing. We adore that teacher, but she alternates years with the first book in the Lost Tools series and the history-based ones. Last year she took AP English Composition through PA Homeschoolers and is a teaching assistant this year. She is SO burned out on IEW. I've been telling her to skip the writing assignments at times and to not worry about her grade. 

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