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Fairy Lights

How Are We Different?

We get asked this question a lot. How are The Lantern English Co.'s online programs different from other writing programs or curricula? 

We like to focus on what we are and on what we offer much more than we like to compare ourselves with this program or that one. Still, after more than 15 YEARS in business, The Lantern English Co. has developed a program with a few specific hallmarks.

  • Flexibility: Although we understand that many parents/students want live interaction, we purposefully designed our classes to be flexible. There are no live meeting times, so you don't have to worry about showing up for class on time or missing something. In addition, our classes are suitable for students around the globe, as we can work with any time zone. 

  • Weekly Work & Feedback: Every class involves weekly writing assignments. Above all, The Lantern English Co. is a writing-based program. Therefore, you can expect that every weekly assignment will require writing of some sort, whether your student is taking an essay class or a literature class. In addition, your student will receive weekly feedback and a grade. Our goal is to keep the student practicing regularly and building on their work and our feedback in new assignments. 

  • Instructor-Provided Feedback: Parents can be as hands-on or hands-off as they want with our program. Instructors provide weekly feedback for each assignment so that the parent doesn't have to worry about how to grade or give comments on their student's work. We created The Lantern English Co. to help parents who struggled with teaching writing or providing consistent English studies in their homeschool. With our classes, parents know that their student will receive a new lesson each week in addition to feedback and a grade for every assignment. 

  • Robust, Organized Instruction: Our program is designed to be thorough and complete. For example, in our grammar classes, we teach the parts of speech thoroughly and in logical order. We expect general mastery of each part of speech and each class before the student moves on to the next. We do not teach parts of speech or grammar concepts randomly, at whim, or very basically as in some unit-study style programs. The same is true of our writing program and our literature classes. We teach elements and classes in an order that enables students to learn. We will not expect paragraphs before a student can write sentences; we will not expect a composition before a student understands the thesis, etc. 

  • Instruction by Skill-Set, Not Age or Grade Level: We are entirely against teaching writing by "grade level." Writing, like math, is a skills-based subject. You cannot expect a high school student with no writing experience to produce multi-page papers simply because he is in the 10th grade. Although we do provide recommended grade levels for our classes, we always ask that students are enrolled in a class most fitting for their skill set, even if that means a 10th grader needs to begin by learning about paragraphs. 

  • Components, not Methods: We believe in the mastery of writing, not to pass a class or get into college, but to be able to communicate what is important to each individual. For this reason, our writing classes focus on the components of writing not on a method that students can memorize. For example, many programs teach the use of a question/quotation as an essay hook, every time; they also teach a three-reason thesis statement for every essay. Although these are nice methods that a student can memorize, the repetition of such methods creates mechanical, stunted writing, and the student becomes overwhelmed if they are asked to write something that doesn't fit the method(s) they know. Thus, for example, we teach the purpose and placement of both the hook and thesis but help the student learn the various ways these can be crafted based on the student's style, the type of essay being written, and the topic being written about. 

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