WriteGuide.com Individualized Writing Course

Book cover: 'WriteGuide.com Individualized Writing Course'

We've all heard the whining and complaining that can come with teaching composition. Many children just refuse to make the effort to write, and when they finally do finish an assignment their parents agonize over how to grade the composition. Having heard the writing complaints for years, I am excited to report that there is now a solution in WriteGuide.com.

Last month two of our children participated in an online tutorial through WriteGuide.com. Wait--before you stop reading because "those things are too pricey for our family," let me assure you, this tutorial is very affordable. Our children had a great time working on several different compositions that were a part of their tutorial and anxiously waited each day for an e-mail response from their tutor. Writing has never been so easy in our home.

WriteGuide.com provides individualized writing courses for as short as 1 month or as long as 12 months. The parent determines the goals of the course and, along with the tutor (all teachers hold masters degrees and have extensive teaching experience) the course content is decided. The students may either have "from scratch" writing assignments, as my children did, or follow a curriculum that the family is already using. The tutor contacts the parent through e-mail to establish the relationship and then the course begins. Each day the student submits his assignment and receives a reply that same day from his teacher. This is not an abstract relationship or one based on forms; the student chats with his teacher through e-mail and receives a personal, friendly reply that motivates the child while at the same time instructing him on style, grammar, mechanics, etc. as they directly relate to his writing assignment. You can see samples of e-mail exchanges between students and teachers at http://writeguide.com/samples.htm

Our online tutorial was a month long and went from the 2nd of one month until the 2nd in the next calendar month. Rather then have one child do the tutorial for the entire month, our 15-year-old son worked with the teacher for three weeks and our 12-year-old daughter worked with her for the remaining 5 or 6 days. The variety of assignments that WriteGuide will allow is quite varied. While working with the teacher, our son wrote a six-page research report on religious symbolism along with a complete bibliography. (What a relief not to have to teach that myself!) He also wrote the beginning of a fantasy novel. Our daughter, who normally hates writing, cheerfully wrote an essay about the Hittites and is begging to do another writing tutorial. I am amazed at how much her writing improved in just one week's time. The teacher was flexible and enthusiastic throughout the course and we were especially happy to learn that she was Catholic. WriteGuide.com employs several Catholic teachers and matches them up with Catholic families upon request.

I'm very impressed with the quality of WriteGuide.com and highly recommend it for both home school families and public school students. You'll be surprised at how much your child will learn in just one month.

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