I think every homeschooling family has areas they’re strong in and areas they’re weak in. For our family, English is our weaker subject. I’ve tried several different programs, but I’ve found a lot of them to be expensive, which makes trying out new ones, well, expensive. 🙂
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked by the Institute in Excellence for Writing booth, and longingly looked at their products but walked away feeling overwhelmed by it all. That all changed however, the day we went to a convention in Nebraska with our Character Badges business and I had the chance to hear Andrew Pudewa speak in person, and also talk with the amazing salesperson at the booth.
Somehow I managed to walk away from hearing Mr. Pudewa speak on spelling feeling renewed in all areas of homeschooling. He’s a very engaging speaker and I was disappointed when the talk ended! I immediately left and went to visit the IEW booth, and there met the sales lady who walked me through the different programs. Kudos to her – she did an amazing job!
This year we are using the IEW level B writing program. I was originally going to use it for our 3rd grader as well, but after looking at it more closely I decided she wasn’t up for it quite yet. So our 5th and 7th grade sons are doing it together, and it couldn’t be a more perfect fit.
A daily week of using IEW looks like this….
The first day they watch the DVD where Mr. Pudewa is teaching. The setting is a live classroom, so you watch him interact with students. He can be incredibly funny, and my boys have been known to go back and watch parts over again just because they want to hear the funny parts more than once!
It will change as we get further into the curriculum, but for now the rest of the week they learn how to pick out key words from each sentence, give me an oral narration, and then write the story out again using the key words they had written down. The rest of the week they have reinforcement paragraphs to work on.
I really love all the helpful checklists which are great for not just my boys to follow along, but for me to instruct them in.
Also included in this set are DVD’s where Mr. Pudewa teaches the homeschooling mom how to teach the lessons. I’ll admit, I’ve only watched 2 of these sessions and we have just kept going without me staying on top of watching the DVD’s. I think they’re great, but I just don’t have time right now.
So what do my boys think about this? We all know that boys are known for not liking to write. 🙂
My 7th grader is in love with the program. He really enjoys all the different aspects of it and rarely complains about doing it.
My 5th grade son normally groans when I say it’s time to do writing, but after he gets going he usually does a good job without any difficulty in following the instructions. Writing just isn’t his thing, (unless you ask him to write about the civil war all the time). 🙂 Overall, I’m pleased with how he has done as we have tried other writing programs that have not been nearly as successful. He told me he loves the videos as he enjoys Mr. Padua and how he teaches.
Never fear dear mother. At first glance this program can look overwhelming, but once you dive in and get started, it’s really not as difficult as you think! Be as involved of a teacher you want. If you are a large family homeschooling mama, you might be more hands off, because you are off chasing the baby and trying to keep the toddler out of the toilet while your older children are actually learning from someone besides yourself for a change. 🙂 Enjoy the break as Mr. Pudewa instills in your children a love of learning!
*Disclaimer – I received these products free of charge to review. I was not paid for this review, and all thoughts are strictly my own.