Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Powerful Paragraphs

The following is a description of a class I'll be offering to homeschoolers this spring at the Huckleberry Center for Creative Learning in Valencia, California.  All classes for the spring semester begin the week of  February 7, 2011 and end June 2, 2011.  If you have questions regarding registration, please visit:  Huck is a vendor for several area charter schools.  

This class will be on Wednesdays from 10:30-12noon

Ages:  8-11
Writing well is an essential skill that will help students succeed in all their classes.  Whether you are an enthusiastic writer or a bit reluctant, this class will strengthen your skills and lay the foundation for future success.  Learning to write well involves mastering the parts of an essay before building towards the whole.   This class is designed to introduce students to a wide variety of paragraph structures and give them lots of practice in planning, developing and focusing powerful paragraphs.  We will use many of the lessons from the IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) handbook A Writer’s Guide to Powerful Paragraphs to help us create unified and coherent paragraphs.  We will focus on creating strong topic sentences to control our paragraphs as we learn about and practice a wide variety of paragraph structures, including:  description, definition, narrative, process analysis, example, analogy, division, classification, comparison/contrast, and cause & effect.  By the end of the semester, each student will have completed a special “writing project portfolio” containing their polished paragraphs and essays.  Students will definitely work hard in this class and do a lot of writing.  There will be weekly homework assignments in addition to our in class work, so that students will have lots of opportunities to hone their skills.  Everyone will need access to a word processing program to aid with the revision process, so students who don’t have typing skills may also wish to participate in the Keyboarding Class this semester.

Homework:  Writing (approx.) 1 hour/week
Materials Fees $20
Tuition:  $240 (For details see

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