Trying to understand Write With the Best

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tbarr12
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 10:01 am

Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by tbarr12 » Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:52 pm

I am most likely going to use CTC next year. I am now investigating the writing curriculum, WWTB, to try to decide whether to use that rather than what I use now. This year I used Writing Tales, in preparation to transition over to Classical Writing year after next. It seems that the approaches are very different - the 2 I'm familiar with use a classical approach which really doesn't teach kids to write creatively, but WWTB seems to teach creative writing.

I guess my question is - when in HOD do kid learn to write persuasive or analytically? I guess that's more of a high school skill, and it sounds like the high school curriculum hasn't been developed yet (if it even will be). Does any of that happen in WWTB? What kind of writing, exactly, does WWTB cover? Has anyone out there used Writing Tales or Classical Writing in the past and, if so, how would you compare them? HOw do you folks in general like WWTB?

I know some links have been posted about why curriculum choices were made, so I'll look at those, too. But I'm also interested in hearing personal experiences.

Thanks for helping with my plethora of questions!
Tracey, married to Steve for 13 years
DD 12 - CTC, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 5
DS 10 - Preparing, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 4
DD 7yo - Beyond, R&S Math

my3sons
Posts: 10589
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Location: South Dakota

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by my3sons » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:40 pm

We did WWTB last year, and my ds grew so much in his writing ability! :D I am very thankful for the guidance it gave my ds. The poetry lessons in PHFHG were a great start to creative writing, and WWTB took that foundation and built beautifully upon it. :) I was so excited at the end of the year that I shared this post here about my ds's improvement in writing:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6379&p=46506

Here is a link where the types of lessons in WWTB are described, in case you hadn't seen that link yet (it's at the very bottom of the link):
http://www.heartofdakota.com/hearts-for ... e-the-best

Here is the PDF of the sample of WWTB as well:
http://www.edudps.com/WRITE-WITH-THE-BEST-Vol-1.pdf

HOD has plans to cover the other writing styles in future guides as well. :)
In Christ,
Julie
Enjoyed LHTH to USII
Currently using USII, MTMM
Wife to Rich for 25 years
Mother to 3 sons, ages 20, 17, and 13
Author of Women's Devotional https://www.ebay.com/itm/293355757184
Blogger https://my3sons-julie.blogspot.com/
Sister to Carrie

birchbark
Posts: 192
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:21 am
Location: NW Wisconsin

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by birchbark » Tue Jun 08, 2010 10:34 pm

I can't help you with your questions, but just thought I'd let you know that we also used Writing Tales this past year, and will be using WWTB next year. They do look quite different, but I am looking forward to seeing how DS will do with creative writing. :)
Married to a wonderful man since 1995
DS
DS
DD
DS

stellar
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 4:57 am

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by stellar » Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:42 am

I use Jump In by Apologia for persuasive writing around 4th and 5th grade. I use this along with HOD.

tbarr12
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 10:01 am

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by tbarr12 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 12:51 pm

To the last post-er - do you use that along with, or instead of, WWTB? thanks.
Tracey, married to Steve for 13 years
DD 12 - CTC, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 5
DS 10 - Preparing, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 4
DD 7yo - Beyond, R&S Math

stellar
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 4:57 am

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by stellar » Fri Jun 11, 2010 1:38 pm

I use it instead of. I have not checked out WWTB but I do hope to use it eventually.

Carrie
Site Admin
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Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by Carrie » Mon Jun 14, 2010 8:34 pm

tbarr12,

WWTB: Vol. I focuses on descriptive writing. As far as writing programs go, you'll usually find most writing programs begin with descriptive writing as that is the easier form of writing for students to produce. :D While WWTB is more creative in nature than the writing lessons within Rod and Staff, it is not purely creative writing as it does focus on the skill and craft of writing within the writing lessons. :D WWTB: Vol. II covers persuasive, narrative, and expository writing. It is much harder than WWTB: Vol. I and is best suited for early high school.

We have found that WWTB does an excellent job of breaking the writing assignments down into manageable chunks. It clearly sets forth the writing topic by first providing an excellent model of that kind of writing from classical literature. This model becomes the standard by which the writing task is broken down into manageable steps. Systematic checklists provided in the back of WWTB give kiddos something to refer to whenever they are called upon to write this kind of piece in later years as well. :D

I also appreciate the fact that WWTB sticks to the task of writing without lumping many other parts of language arts within it. It does include a grammar hunt through the classic passage once in each of the units, but it is done to show the pattern excellent writers use. It is not the focal point. :D

There is no preparation or planning to teach WWTB, and we find it complements Rod and Staff very well. Both train children in the steps to good writing, yet WWTB is CM-style with its modeling of great writers. Before writing, WWTB also has kiddos find a passage of their own choosing (from any book they have at home) which they feel exemplifies the kind of writing modeled in the provided passage of classic literature. This is another wonderful literature connection and also provides excellent application of the concepts shown within the classic literature piece. It has the side benefit of providing yet another example of good writing from literature and sets a higher goal for what the kiddos are trying to produce. :D

We did consider Writing Tales as well as Classical Writing before settling upon WWTB. While you can easily use any program that you desire, for our purposes we found Writing Tales to overlap much more with skills we already had included in our guide. We also did not find it to be as CM in style. :D

We found Classical Writing to be overwhelming in the required time commitment both from the parent to figure out how to make the program work and in the daily required time from the child to complete the lessons. That ruled this particular program out for us, as we like to keep our day in balance and intersperse writing across the HOD guide in smaller segments instead. We also lean more in the CM direction with our writing instruction, though not delaying formal writing instruction to the point that CM would recommend. :D

We find the combination of years of classic poetry instruction, combined with a steady diet of living books, along with daily oral and written narration practice, and gentle guided writing lessons to produce excellent writers. We're finding it to be true with our own kiddos, and many other HOD moms are discovering the writer in their child too. :D

I hope that helps a bit as you ponder!:D

Blessings,
Carrie

tbarr12
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 10:01 am

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by tbarr12 » Tue Jun 15, 2010 5:19 pm

Carrie - thanks so much for your reply! I had already decided to go with WWTB, partly because I am very excited about HOD, and really wanted to try your recommendations. Also, I think at least my oldest dd was frustrated by the lack of creative opportunities in Writing Tales this year - I think there's a lot more creativity wanting to be expressed! So I felt she deserved that chance. I do appreciate your explanation of your choices, and it makes sense to me. There is more to writing than just expository and, even though that's my strength, she may do better with creative. And it's a fun place to start. thanks again.

Tracey
Tracey, married to Steve for 13 years
DD 12 - CTC, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 5
DS 10 - Preparing, R&S Math, R&S Grammar 4
DD 7yo - Beyond, R&S Math

Carrie
Site Admin
Posts: 8052
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 8:39 pm

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by Carrie » Tue Jun 22, 2010 1:48 pm

Tracey,

Thanks so much for the udpate! We pray that WWTB will be a good writing experience for your little sweetie this year! :D I know my own son is pulling it out this summer on his own as he's busily writing up a storm! :D

Blessings,
Carrie

faith0428
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Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2008 7:45 am
Location: Florence, TX
Contact:

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by faith0428 » Fri Apr 05, 2013 7:47 am

I just came across this post and am wondering now about WWTB Volume 2 in MTMM. Carrie made the comment that it is best for early High School, but if one starts HOD with LHFHG in K, then MTMM will be reached in 7th grade. That will be my situation in a couple of years. Will WWTB 2 work for a 7th grader?
~ April Faith ~
http://www.desiremyheart.blogspot.com
Wife to Andy since 3/98
Mom to:
Savannah Hope 12 (11/01) and Amaris Love 10 (6/03) doing Res2Ref
Jadon Andrew 8 (1/06) and Bethany Joy 6 (4/07) doing BLHFHG

my3sons
Posts: 10589
Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2007 7:08 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by my3sons » Tue Apr 09, 2013 1:27 pm

WWTB 2 has worked awesome for my 7th grader! However, he has completed every single part of the LA plans of each of the HOD guides previously (from LHTH to RevtoRev). The steady increase in LA skills difficulty incrementally through the years has prepared him so well for WWTB 2. I have to honestly say my help with it has been minimal. He is flourishing. I'd really encourage consistently doing Drawn into the Heart of Reading, R & S English, dictation, copywork, and the various writing programs through the years with HOD. Also, doing the LA skills that are included in the rest of the subject areas (i.e. oral and written narrations in science/history/Storytime, etc.) all prepare students for the more difficult LA skills to come and maintain a solid, successful balance of LA skills that makes a stronger student in LA across the board. HTH! :D

In Christ,
Julie
Enjoyed LHTH to USII
Currently using USII, MTMM
Wife to Rich for 25 years
Mother to 3 sons, ages 20, 17, and 13
Author of Women's Devotional https://www.ebay.com/itm/293355757184
Blogger https://my3sons-julie.blogspot.com/
Sister to Carrie

faith0428
Posts: 106
Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2008 7:45 am
Location: Florence, TX
Contact:

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by faith0428 » Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:08 pm

Thank you, Julie! HOD is all we have used for the 5 years we have been homeschooling. We have struggled with completing DITHOR because my daughters have been part of a book club during the school year for the last two years, but I'm hoping to work on it during the summer and try harder in scheduling it in at least twice a week during the school year beginning in the fall. I don't feel that writing is my strong point, so I tend to worry about it.
~ April Faith ~
http://www.desiremyheart.blogspot.com
Wife to Andy since 3/98
Mom to:
Savannah Hope 12 (11/01) and Amaris Love 10 (6/03) doing Res2Ref
Jadon Andrew 8 (1/06) and Bethany Joy 6 (4/07) doing BLHFHG

celestialmom
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2012 12:55 pm

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by celestialmom » Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:44 pm

Amen Julie!!!! Having my oldest two graduate from college, I have realized how vitally important those language arts skills are!!! I cannot encourage everyone strongly enough to be diligent about staying the course with their language arts programs. Sometimes it is hard to see the tree through the woods when you're knee deep in the woods and just trying to survive, but believe me you will be ever so grateful when your children go to college and can confidently turn in papers for their courses. It takes year after year of doing these skills before the become automatic. College is the time to be concentrating on the content of their papers and not worrying about grammatical errors or how to write a paper. If our homeschooled children are going to impact their world for Christ, we need strong writers able to communicate clearly and effectively. Okay, I'll get off my bandwagon now. Just had to chime in with what I've learned the hard way.

my3sons
Posts: 10589
Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2007 7:08 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Trying to understand Write With the Best

Post by my3sons » Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:30 am

:) :) :) Thanks! It's nice to hear that from a wise lady like yourself who has gone ahead and finished homeschooling through high school! I deeply respect that commitment of seeing it through to the end; I want this to be our story looking ahead too! Thanks for sharing here! :D

In Christ,
Julie
Enjoyed LHTH to USII
Currently using USII, MTMM
Wife to Rich for 25 years
Mother to 3 sons, ages 20, 17, and 13
Author of Women's Devotional https://www.ebay.com/itm/293355757184
Blogger https://my3sons-julie.blogspot.com/
Sister to Carrie

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