I’m thrilled to be able to share a homeschool curriculum review about a new writing curriculum we tried out this spring. It’s called the WriteShop I Basic Set (5th ed.) and we used the newly updated Video Course with it, too. If you’re looking for a video writing course, I think you will love this one!
Disclosure: The following post Video Writing Course: Writeshop 1 Review is a sponsored post from WriteShop. I received WriteShop I Basic Set and the Video Course as well as monetary compensation for my time in researching and writing this completely honest review.
What Does WriteShop Include?
The WriteShop I Basic Set (5th ed.) includes the two basic components of the WriteShop program: the Teacher’s Manual and the WriteShop I Student Workbook. If you have more than one student, you can purchase an extra student workbook for them, or permission is granted to copy worksheet pages and rubrics for single-family use only (i.e. pages with blank lines or other fill-in options), but not “read-only” pages.
And, the Teacher’s Manual is for WriteShop I and II, so when you’re ready to move to the next level, you can just purchase a WriteShop II student workbook and you’re set!
Your students will be exposed to a variety of writing techniques such as creative, expository narrative, persuasive, and essay writing. They’ll learn different style techniques and self-editing, as well.
The Teacher’s Manual features a softcover, plastic-coil binding with sturdy tabbed dividers. The Student Workbook is a paperback book with loose-leaf pages. Student workbook pages are 3-hole punched and ready for your own binder.
What’s new in the 5th edition?
The 5th edition now has faith-neutral content. The introductions are streamlined, and content and answer keys have been updated. What else has been updated? The student and teacher checklists, and the parent-friendly schedules.
What’s So Special About the Video Writing Course?
We also had the pleasure to use the newly updated Video Course that goes along with WriteShop I. I was thrilled about this because I need all the help I can get in teaching writing to my kids. It’s definitely not a subject I feel comfortable teaching them.
The new WriteShop I video course has:
- a streamlined interface
- improved course navigation
- better visual appeal with fresh graphics
- more concise teaching time
- faster loading technology
- fun examples and lots of humor
- relevance for today’s teens
- additional self-editing tips
I love the WriteShop I Video Course because it helps me teach the course and we might even get to the point where my students can do use it independently. It gave me more confidence that I was teaching correctly, and it taught my kids through an additional medium. They seem to absorb more learning when they have the teaching through various ways (reading, listening, video, etc.).
The video course gives the student clear instructions with a lady narrating. It includes colorful graphics and practical examples to make each lesson interesting and motivating teens.
The writing course is online; it’s not a DVD, so you will need internet access for the WriteShop I Video Companion Course.
Lessons are presented using practical examples and demonstrations. The video blends words, pictures, and friendly narrative. I love the short lessons — only 10- to 15-minutes each and that each video breaks down WriteShop lessons into segments and gives in-depth explanations of the key points in a fun and easily understood way.
The videos never expire. Use them as long as you need, going at your teen’s own pace.
What the Video Course Gives Students vs. Parents
The Video Course provides STUDENTS with:
- Composition examples for each lesson.
- Step-by-step demonstrations of each step of the writing process.
- Techniques to identify repeated words, passive verbs, and other common mistakes.
- Instructions for using WriteShop’s sentence variations.
- Self-editing guidance.
The Video Course provides PARENTS with:
- Overview of the entire WriteShop program.
- Scheduling flexibility.
- “Edit Fearlessly” videos offering guidance and tips so you can confidently edit your student’s papers.
Check out this Video Course sample lesson:
What Ages is WriteShop I for?
WriteShop I and II are for teens. The curriculum was specially written for middle school and high school students. Basically, WriteShop I can be used with 7th-11th graders and WriteShop II for 8th-12th graders. They say that some 6th graders can use WriteShop I, and I did start it with my son who loves to write who will be a 6th grader in the fall. He was definitely able to handle the first few lessons!
Is WriteShop Just for Use in the Home?
No, WriteShop is very flexible! Use it in a homeschool co-op, in a school, to tutor single students or a group– however you’d like! I used it with three of my students together in our home as part of our homeschool. I love doing it that way because they can share their work with each other.
What I Love About WriteShop
Before I started doing it with my three kids, I took a couple of days to read through the teacher’s instructions. It’s very easy to understand and follow. I especially appreciate the detailed lesson plans and step-by-step student instructions. It tells me exactly what to do each day.
I wanted to know the overview of WriteShop I and II and learned that it’s very incremental and builds the skills that writers need. Check out this chart to see all the Skills that are introduced or reviewed and practiced in WriteShop I and II:
What Else Do You Need Besides the Teacher’s Guide, Student Workbook, and Video Writing Course?
Other helpful resources are the Copying and Dictation Exercises for WriteShop I, The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation, and a poster featuring the steps of the writing process.
And, of course, have a great thesaurus handy! You can even use an online one.
What Other Levels Does WriteShop Have?
WorkShop Junior Books D, E, and F.
Writing is a subject that is necessary for all students to learn. For many homeschool moms, teaching writing doesn’t come naturally. WriteShop is the perfect curriculum for all grade levels, and I love that after 20 years, they are still continuing to make improvements so that WriteShop keeps up with the times. Try out some free samples, get some free printables, and enjoy WriteShop as your writing curriculum this year!
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