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The Growing Writer
suggested for grades 7th-9th
growing Grammar I: Writing isn't just about having good ideas. A good writer studies mechanics in order to write correctly, logically, and intelligently. This class covers the first five parts of speech (nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs) along with thorough instruction in verb tenses and simple sentence structure to help the student achieve better success in writing.
growing Grammar II: This class covers the subject complements – predicate nominatives & predicate adjectives – and the object complements – direct objects & indirect objects. Next, pronouns are covered in greater depth, and a new part of speech – the conjunction – is covered. Finally, this class covers instruction in varying sentence structures and how to avoid common sentence errors.
growing Grammar III: This class focuses on growing sentence development through understanding phrases and clauses. Students learn the last two parts of speech – the preposition and the interjection – while learning about simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex sentences.
growing Grammar IV: This final grammar and mechanics class will provide thorough studies in rules of capitalization and punctuation. Students learn about commas, semi-colons, colons, parentheses, brackets, braces, hyphens, dashes, underline/italics, quotation marks, apostrophes, slashes, and ellipses. In addition, students study the variety of rules for number writing.
essay basics: This course teaches essay basics, beginning with a review of the paragraph, the foundation of all essay writing. Students then learn how to develop a topic and thesis, write proper introductions and conclusions, choose the best organizational methods, and plan their essays with the goal of writing a five-paragraph essay. Finally, students spend time learning how to transition well between paragraphs and use examples within the context of practice essay assignments.
essay basics practice: This course briefly reviews concepts taught in Essay Basics while allowing the student to practice one complete five-paragraph essay each week, in order to gain confidence in essay writing skills before moving on to Growing the Essay. This class is for students who have already completed our Essay Basics class, or who have experience but need additional practice in writing five- paragraph essays.
growing the essay i: This class helps students naturally progress from the five-paragraph essay to an essay of up to ten paragraphs utilizing the rough draft and revision method. While helping students continue good essay planning and outlining skills, we discuss key ways to grow the essay, through constructing stronger introductions and conclusions, improving writing voice, showing rather than telling (descriptive essay) and creating significance (personal narrative essay).
growing the essay iI: This class continues the progression of essay-writing skills using the rough draft and revision method. While helping students practice good essay planning and outlining skills, we discuss how to further grow the essay, through using figurative language (descriptive essay II), using sources (expository essay), and creating debate (persuasive essay).
Growing the essay fast track: This class covers all Growing the Essay content in our standard eight-week format. Students learn how to grow essays through constructing stronger introductions and conclusions and through improving writing voice. Students then learn about the four essay styles: descriptive, narrative, expository, and persuasive. Students should be prepared to write one complete essay each week.
Growing the essay practice: This course briefly reviews concepts taught in Growing the Essay while allowing the student to practice one complete essay each week, in order to gain confidence in essay writing skills before moving on to our advanced classes. This class is for students who have already completed our Growing the Essay material, or who have experience but need additional practice in writing descriptive, narrative, expository, and basic persuasive essays of 7-10 paragraphs.
the research paper: This course teaches the process of writing a research paper from establishing a topic, developing a thesis, finding sources, and reading/taking notes all the way through the planning and drafting stages to the final project. Students in this research class write a paper 1500-2000 words long on the topic of their (or their parents') choice. Students must be comfortable writing five-paragraph essays prior to enrolling in this class.
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