Frequently asked questions
What grade levels are these books for?
Book 1 is best used by grades 5-7. Book 2 is best used by grades 7-8. The difficulty level is flexible and depends on how much writing your students have done previously.
How many times do I need to do the lessons to get through the book in a year?
There are 75 lessons in each book. You only need to do two lessons per week to get through in a year.
Can I make copies of the lessons?
No. This is copyrighted material. But feel free to teach from the book.
Do I need to have class?
Preferrably yes. Students generally are stimulated best by teacher involvement and class participation. On the other hand the workbooks are designed for students to be able to do them on their own.
I have a student that has extra time. Would this be a good workbook to offer?
Yes. But as a teacher you still need to offer input and feedback on their work.
What do I do if I have a multi-grade classroom?
First of all, remember that writing is an art developed by practice so to write on the same subject twice will not hurt anyone. One suggestion would be to have all your students work through book 1 together one school term, and then have everyone work through book 2 the following year. Some schools with two grades in one classroom are doing half the book with the whole classroom one year and doing the other half the following year. Other options include doing the book in one year with all your students and using other writing assignment resources for in between years.
Do I need to grade these lessons?
You don't need to grade them, but it is very important to be giving continual feedback. Students need written and verbal comments on their writing. Try to be critical according to the student's level of success. Saying "good job" to the excellent writer is not helpful. Pointing out things to improve/change or underlining something that is fresh and full of interest would be more helpful. But for the student that struggles to write, saying "good job" might be appropriate. There are several lessons sprinkled throughout the book that have a "gold piece" icon on the top of the page. Those lessons would be good to revise and polish into a final piece. However, that is up to you. In the back of the book, we've included a rubric that you may use if you desire. There are arguments for both sides of whether or not you should grade compositions. We lean to the side of not assigning a grade to keep the lessons approachable and fun.