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lanabug

Windows to the World after Figuratively Speaking - overkill?

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My dd has been working through the Figuratively Speaking book and reading a lot of the literature. I am considering Windows to the World next year for 9th grade, but it uses a lot of the same short stories and novels that she has read this year. Would it be overkill to use WTTW next year? We have not done any literary analysis this year, just read and discussed the stories. My thought was that the analysis might be easier since the literature would already be familiar.

Thanks!
Lana

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You have great timing!  I just closed my teacher’s guide for WTtW and picked up my phone to play on The Hive.  I just said aloud to the room, “This has been a really good course!”.

I am teaching the last lesson today to a group of students.  I think it has done an excellent job of teaching annotating, slow reading, analyzing, and writing literary analysis.  I think it’s worth working through, and it would always be easy to add other short stories to the course.  The author does make some suggestions about alternative stories.  My class often had discussions about current and classic movies using these same techniques.  

I, personally, would use it next year if I were in your situation.  I do believe that the students have enjoyed it as well as I have.

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Not overkill at all. There have very different types of focus.

Figuratively Speaking is good for grades 6-9, as a light introduction to a variety of literary and poetic elements. I see it as a way of explaining what some of the "tools" in the literary analysis "toolbox" ARE.

Windows to the World is good for grades 9-12 (or advanced reading/writing 8th graders), and the focus is on annotation; how to write a literary analysis essay (using some of your annotations as support); and then an in-depth working with 8-10 of the most common literary elements. So it's more about picking up out of the "toolbox" some of the "tools" of literary analysis and putting them into USE.

As far as re-reading some of the stories -- WttW has you dig DEEP into the stories, so a first reading just for exposure this year would be very helpful for then digging into the stories with WttW. However, if you and DD discussed and analyzed the stories this year -- already did some "deep digging" -- then WttW may be less of a fit. You could always skim over those repeat stories, but go through the teaching material and exercises to gain deeper understanding of literary elements, and practice of literary analysis.

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We do both also, although we don't read the full versions of the lit choices in FS, just learn the terms. WttW is primarily a writing curriculum that teaches step by step how to write a literary analysis essay. Very different focus!

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OK, I have more questions. I've been reading more about WTTW, and the general consensus is that there isn't a lot of explicit writing instruction, and that a student who isn't already familiar with a 5-paragraph essay may have trouble. Do you agree, and if so, what would you recommend for more direct writing instruction?  My dd14 is a reluctant writer. She does well with grammar/mechanics and sentence structure, but struggles with putting ideas to paper. We have used IEW SWI-B this year, and it has been great for her. She (and I) would both do better with direct-to-the-student instruction where I am in a support role rather than the main instructor.

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1 hour ago, lanabug said:

OK, I have more questions. I've been reading more about WTTW, and the general consensus is that there isn't a lot of explicit writing instruction, and that a student who isn't already familiar with a 5-paragraph essay may have trouble. Do you agree, and if so, what would you recommend for more direct writing instruction?  My dd14 is a reluctant writer. She does well with grammar/mechanics and sentence structure, but struggles with putting ideas to paper. We have used IEW SWI-B this year, and it has been great for her. She (and I) would both do better with direct-to-the-student instruction where I am in a support role rather than the main instructor.

We do IEW SWI B, then SICC B, then Elegant Essay before WttW, but EE definitely has you as the teacher (as does WttW). I believe IEW has a high school essay intensive course?

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On 2/22/2020 at 9:26 AM, lanabug said:

OK, I have more questions. I've been reading more about WTTW, and the general consensus is that there isn't a lot of explicit writing instruction, and that a student who isn't already familiar with a 5-paragraph essay may have trouble. Do you agree, and if so, what would you recommend for more direct writing instruction?  My dd14 is a reluctant writer. She does well with grammar/mechanics and sentence structure, but struggles with putting ideas to paper. We have used IEW SWI-B this year, and it has been great for her. She (and I) would both do better with direct-to-the-student instruction where I am in a support role rather than the main instructor.


Unit 5 of WttW is very specific step-by-step instruction in writing the literary analysis essay. But yes, WttW does not cover other types of essay writing, nor does it cover basic introduction to multi-paragraph writing. 

The Power in Your Hands (Sharon Watson -- 1 year, covers a variety of types of writing; for gr. 9-12; or, if a weak writer, could use her gr. 6-9 Jump In
The Lively Art of Writing + free go-along work pages created by WTMers = google doc links: workbook and teacher guide
The Elegant Essay -- 1 semester (by Leisha Myers, who also created WttW)

Or, outsource essay writing to an online course provider:
Lantern English: 4 course series, each class is $60 and runs for 8 weeks: Essay Basics; Essay Practice; Growing the Essay; Growing the Essay Practice
- Brave Writer:
* essay prep series, each class is $239 and runs for 4 weeks: Essay Prep: Dynamic Thinking; Reading the Essay; Research & Citations
* essay writing: each class is $299 and runs for 6 weeks: Exploratory and Persuasive Essay Writing; Rhetorical Critique and Analysis
 

Edited by Lori D.

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21 hours ago, Lori D. said:


Unit 5 of WttW is very specific step-by-step instruction in writing the literary analysis essay. But yes, WttW does not cover other types of essay writing, nor does it cover basic introduction to multi-paragraph writing. 

The Power in Your Hands (Sharon Watson -- 1 year, covers a variety of types of writing; for gr. 9-12; or, if a weak writer, could use her gr. 6-9 Jump In
The Lively Art of Writing + free go-along work pages created by WTMers = google doc links: workbook and teacher guide
The Elegant Essay -- 1 semester (by Leisha Myers, who also created WttW)

Or, outsource essay writing to an online course provider:
Lantern English: 4 course series, each class is $60 and runs for 8 weeks: Essay Basics; Essay Practice; Growing the Essay; Growing the Essay Practice
- Brave Writer:
* essay prep series, each class is $239 and runs for 4 weeks: Essay Prep: Dynamic Thinking; Reading the Essay; Research & Citations
* essay writing: each class is $299 and runs for 6 weeks: Exploratory and Persuasive Essay Writing; Rhetorical Critique and Analysis
 

We have used part of Jump In. It was okay, but neither of us were crazy about it. I have heard good things about The Power in Your Hands. I actually recommended it to our co-op for the high school composition class and it was well received. I'll have to take another look at that one.

I already have both LAoW and EE on my list of potentials! BraveWriter is probably not in my budget, but I'll take a look at Lantern for sure. The class titles sound very much like what I am looking for.

Thank you @Lori D.! You are a true treasure on the WTM boards. I always look for your responses to posts because I know they will be very thoughtful replies with a true fountain of knowledge and experience.

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On 2/22/2020 at 7:36 PM, cintinative said:

I didn't see this mentioned, but some people like to use the Jill Pike syllabus that combines Teaching the Classics with WTTW.  https://iew.com/shop/products/syllabus-introduction-literary-analysis

It provides a detailed schedule and grading information, etc. 

 

This is helpful to read, even if you choose not to use it, imo.

 

Also, WttW has additional lit suggestions with many chapers, beyond the main stories. We have really enjoyed many of these. 

There is lots of scaffolding for the essay writing. 

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