- Reviewed on Saturday, March 4, 2017
- Grades Used: 7th-8h
- Dates used: 2016-17
I chose to use WriteShop after pretty much everything else I had used with my son failed. We tried Writing With Ease, Winning With Writing, Bravewriter, and Writing Skills. My son was not making any progress. All his sentences were choppy and generic, and he did not recognize that some of what he wrote was not even a complete sentence. My son has a wonderful creative voice, but his expository writing was severely lacking.
WriteShop has definitely improved his writing. My son needed specific instruction in stylistic details, which he did not get from any of his previous curricula. He did not "absorb" writing conventions the way The Well-Trained Mind claimed he would. He did not have an "ear for language" as promised by Bravewriter. Although he learned the mechanical format from Writing Skills, he had no sense of sentence style or variation. His sentences were stilted.
WriteShop provided him with exactly the instruction he needed in identifying and practicing more sophisticated ways to construct his sentences. The requirements that he include specific sentence variations in each composition helped to expand his thinking and his toolbox for sentence composing. His writing is much more interesting now.
The major con of this program is that it is a huge amount of work for a very small finished product. The student spends up to two weeks to create one 7-to-10-sentence paragraph. The checklists for the student are visually overwhelming, which caused my son to be unable to effectively use them. The word lists didn't really work very well; oftentimes the types of words on the specific lists did not correspond well with the words my son needed to use in his writing. He began to hate the very repetitive format for writing. There was also way too much flipping around in the books. I think that WriteShop definitely has some good ideas, but the execution is really just too complicated.
It took us almost two years to complete WriteShop I. I think that overall, it was time well spent because my son's writing is much improved. However, both of us were daunted by the idea of another two years in WriteShop II, so we have ultimately decided to switch to another program. I did learn a lot from WriteShop that I can carry forward as I continue to instruct my son in writing. If you decide to use WriteShop, I recommend streamlining the checklists and condensing the instruction. Doing everything "by the book" draws out the act of writing into an endless series of steps that drains it of fun.
- Reviewed on Wednesday, January 29, 2014
- Grades Used: 7th
- Dates used: 2013-2014 (still using)
My son is a very reluctant writer. He could not write a grammatically correct sentence. He barely had a handle on basic punctuation. Nouns, pronouns, and adjectives were foreign words to him.
I did not have any idea on how to teach him how to write. After a bit of research, and a false start with another program, we started in on Write Shop I. While he is still not excited about writing, I see major progress!
I appreciate the program's organization, including it's clear methodical manner that lets me teach small bites of information. For each lesson, there is time spend on skill building and organizational worksheets that assist in brainstorming before writing. You write a practice paragraph and then you write another final paragraph that is graded. One well written paragraph...baby steps toward essay writing.
I am quite happy with this program and see that my son is slowly developing good writing skills with improved grammar, punctuation, and spelling.
- Reviewed on Thursday, December 2, 2010
- Grades Used: 8-9th
- Dates used: 2008 - 2009
We went through WriteShop I and II. Previously, we used other programs including Shurley and Writing Strands. It never clicked with dd. She HATED writing and it showed. WriteShop breaks everything down into manageable steps. Is this program for the advanced writer? Emphatically no. But it worked wonders for my reluctant writer. In contrast to what a previous poster wrote, dd loved the clown assignment and had a lot of fun with it. After finishing WriteShop we switched to BJU and she was ready for the more advanced writing. She no longer hates writing and in fact has become quite proficient. I credit WriteShop for that. The rubrics included really helped in scoring each writing assignment .
- Reviewed on Friday, September 10, 2010
- Grades Used: 8th
- Dates used: 2010 +
We've only completed lesson 1 and I'm thrilled with this program.
Writing paragraphs or papers was agony for me in school and I was concerned how I was going to help my children become good writers when I had no idea what I was doing. We use Abeka for most subjects and love it, but I didn't feel their way of teaching how to write papers and such were very user friendly at all.
This program breaks it down, step by step, has check lists for both the child and the parent, so both know what is expected. There as an abundance of word lists in the back, directions in great detail per step, pages of advice and explanations, just so much help! There is so much help and information it was a bit overwhelming at first to figure it all out!
The program schedule for each lessons breaks it down to where there's just a small amount of time spent daily, which helps the child not to feel overwhelmed or bored. The program offers several schedules so you can adjust the program to your time frame and how fast or slow you'd like to take to complete the curriculum.
For the first time since I started homeschooling 8 years ago, I feel with this program that I'll be able to help my children learn to write efficiently, clearly, creatively, effectively.....I think it's the most parent and child friendly writing program out there!
I wish I had been taught this way! I can't rave enough about this program after just the first lesson and I see how far it will be taking us once we've completed the program. My son's first final draft paragraph was written beautifully. I was amazed at the talent my son seems to have found within due to this program!