My son is in public schools and wants to stay in school with his friends and for sports. The schools are not teaching my son writing skills the way he learns. He did not pass his writing STARR test in 9th grade and just retook the test and I am not sure that he passed this one either. Can anyone recommend a writing program that has worked for their learning different child? I think we will need to start a program with basic learning skills and work forward. I have looked at the Verticy Learning system. Has anyone used this program? Will greatly appreciate your recommendations!
by SilverkittyDecember 16, 2012 at 9:00 PM
My daughter is in 6th and much the say way as your son. I'm looking at Essentials in writing or Excellence in Writing. I've not used either, but they both have a video to watch and an assignment to do. I think either will help my daughter.
by JKronrodDecember 16, 2012 at 10:34 PM
I've used Institute for Excellence in Writing. The attitude of Mr. Paduwa (sp?) is helpful. He's a former violin teacher and worries about mechanics and getting the kids comfortable with getting the words down on paper, focusing on one thing at a time. I heard him speak once. He spoke about the damaging over-emphasis on "your own words" that seems to be the norm in the schools. This isn't to say that the goal isn't to get students to write on their own, but rather that it is very difficult for some children to learn how to write without explicit examples and structure. He told a story about a younger student who was asked to write a story. The little boy couldn't come up with an opening sentence, while everyone else was writing away. Mr. Paduwa said that he went up to the boy, and after determining what the problem was, said, "Why don't you say ...." and gave him the words. The boy wrote them down. Mr. Paduwa gave him the next sentence, and by the third sentence, the boy started writing on his own. The teachers were apparently horrified since the writing "wasn't all his work," missing the point that he was there to teach children HOW to write, not to have the children produce original work. '
The approach the program takes is to start with the kids taking three "key words" from each sentence in a paragraph, and then rewriting the paragraph from the key word outline. That eliminates the stress of "knowing what to write." Once they are comfortable with that, they learn how to put in "dress-ups" -- essentially writing structures that make the writing more interesting -- one at a time. Eventually, they learn to take notes and structure their own essays. While I do object that some of the "sample" writing is less than wonderful (I'm a great believer in reading good writing in order to learn how to write well), I have to say that the approach works. Focusing on one thing at a time is very effective.
by BookWoman24December 27, 2012 at 11:26 PM
My 13 year old son is also dysgraphic and gets no support from his school. We've backed off the importance of grades and are encouraging him to practice typing, as that will be what he needs in the real world. Your son has the additional problem of dyslexia, so I doubt that a solution that simple will be helpful, but I do encourage you to work with him on his typing. It will be much more important when he is out in the world and it will also give him the spelling/punctuation support he needs.
January 5 at 11:40 PM
by TinasTribeJanuary 6 at 12:57 AM
For the dyslexia issue I know we recently purchased the Barton Method and I have heard nothing but good things about it.
January 7 at 1:25 PMThx. Will look it up.