Exploring Writing A is designed for the 1st-3rd grader who has either a very basic knowledge of the spoken English language. This course will use the First Language Lessons, Level 1 and 2, written by Jessie Wise, and it’s companion, Writing With Ease, written by Susan Wise Bauer.
Ms. Bauer states that, “There’s a central problem with the write-more-and-you’ll-get-better method. It treats writing as though it were analogous to speech: the more deeply you’re immersed in it, the more competent you’ll become.” Adding, “But writing is essentially unlike speaking.” Ms. Bauer explains children instinctually have a desire to communicate through speech from infancy. By talking to and reading to your child, you help them to learn verbal skills.
However, children do not have the same inclination to write. “Writing, unlike speech, isn’t a natural activity,” says Ms. Bauer. Simply surrounding a child with the written word doesn’t necessarily teach them how to write- “because speech and writing are fundamentally different.”
In this course, young students will first learn to express thoughts and ideas verbally, then progress to putting it down on paper. We will work toward this goal through narration, copywork, and dictation.
- Narration is the process of the students telling back what they just read or heard in their own words.
- Copywork allows young students to focus on developing the mechanical skills of writing by copying the writing of others.
- Dictation is the practice of reading a selection aloud to the students while they write it out as accurately as possible, paying attention to sentence structure and form.
These steps will form a foundation for young students to begin putting the two skills (expressing ideas through verbal and written communication) together.
Exploring Writing A is a full-year course. Grading will be either a pass or fail, determined by participation in class and the completion of assignments both in and outside of class. Materials needed for this class is a pencil and lined writing paper or the print out that will be provided.
Students must be able to write legibly and be able to write a complete sentence without assistance.