Writer’s Workshop – Winter/Spring 2018

REGISTRATION FOR THE 2018 WINTER/SPRING SESSION IS NOW OPEN!

The Winter/Spring Writer’s Workshop will begin on Saturday, Jan 13, 2018. The Writer’s Workshop will include both academic and creative writing workshop in its curriculum. All academic writing topics correlate to the Common Core National Standards.

New this session! SAT Prep for Reading & Writing (High School Only) and Reading Comprehension, Critical/Close Reading & Writing Strategies (For Middle & High School Only)
(Scroll down for all course descriptions)

2018_Schedule_ipiccy

As always, enrollment is limited and registration is on a first come, first serve basis. The class size is small and within each class, students will be grouped in clusters of three to four based on student aptitude and writing ability. The small class size allows for individual attention to each student. This helps foster a sense of belonging to a supportive learning community in which students can feel comfortable exploring new directions in their writing and thinking. Trusting one’s own language and voice, learning to think for oneself and in collaboration with others— these are the qualities and skills that the workshop strives to develop.

New Student Assessment: Students enrolling for the first time in the Writer’s Workshop will receive an assessment packet via email ( Gmail preferred since it will be a Google doc) a week or ten days prior to the 1st day of class. Students will be required to complete the “timed test” without any help from parents and send it back via email by a certain date before class begins. This will help me understand the student’s writing skills prior to the beginning of class and identify a baseline for instruction.

New Parent Orientation: Parents will be required to attend an in-class orientation for about 90 minutes wherein I’ll share my teaching philosophy, classroom guidelines, student/parent expectations and most importantly answer any questions you may have about the program. Parent Orientation Date: Saturday or Sunday, January 6th/7th. (Exact Date/Time TBA, Parents will receive an email about the orientation time a week prior (or sooner) to Jan 6th/7th)

Note: New students are charged a one-time registration, assessment, and supplies fee of $50/- which can be paid via check/cash to the coach separately during Parent Orientation. This is to say that the tuition fees you will pay via installments will not include/charge you for this amount.

Important: All students are expected to have a personal Gmail account (not the one provided by the school district) since most of the essays and other writing work will be shared and corrected via Google Docs.

Continue reading for detailed course description of individual courses

All students enrolled in their grade level "writer's workshop program" will learn and become
proficient in the various aspects of 6+1 writing traits including,
Idea Synthesis, Organization, Word Choice, Sentence Fluency, Voice, Conventions, and Presentation
along with specific attention given to spelling, vocabulary, punctuation, and grammar.

Additionally, the students will learn and work on the following for their specific grade levels.

Elementary Writer's Workshop (Grades 4 & 5 )
 -Cause & Effect Essay Writing
 -Persuasive Essay Writing
 -Narrative Essay Writing
 -Show, Don't Tell Writing Technique
 -Writing Effective Introductions and Conclusions
 -Grade Appropriate Creative Writing including Poetry

Students in Elementary and Middle School will have some homework and are expected to complete by the due date assigned. Students are encouraged to use their class time efficiently to complete some/most parts of their writing work in class, so as to minimize homework load.

Middle School Writer's Workshop (Grades 6, 7, & 8)
 -Compare & Contrast Essay Writing
 -Research Essay Writing
 -Argumentative Essay Writing
 -Biographical Narrative Essay Writing
 -Writing Effective Introductions and Conclusions
 -Grade Appropriate Creative Writing including Poetry

Middle School Students in 8th grade may begin to work on HS Freshman English concepts around spring (March 2018) based on how they fare in class during the Winter session.

High School Writer's Workshop  (Grade 9, 10, 11, & 12) 
 -Definition Essay
 -Personal Narrative Essay ( helps with college application essays as well)
 -Research Essay Writing
 -Argumentative Essay Writing
 -Introduction to SAT Writing (For extensive and exclusive SAT reading and writing practice,check out the SAT Prep course)
 -Writing Effective Introductions and Conclusions
 -Grade Appropriate Creative Writing including Poetry

Since High School Students will already have sufficient homework load from school, writing work from the workshop is mostly done in class during the workshop time, except for a few essay revisions or practice worksheets which will be tailored based on the student’s time and specific needs.

SAT Prep for Reading and Writing (High School Only) –  While some middle and all high school workshop students have always had an introduction to SAT Reading/Writing as part of the ‘Writer’s Workshop”, in this course specifically, students will learn about evidence-based reading and writing (the crux of the SAT Reading & Writing test) and hone their skills to identify themes, arguments, and vocabulary and analyze history, among other things. SAT Reading Passages will traditionally draw from the U.S. and World Literature, History/Social Studies, and Science ranging from arguments to nonfiction narratives. Some passages and/or questions will refer to one or more informational graphics that represent data. SAT Writing Questions associated with the graphical representations will ask students to revise and edit the passage based on the data presented in the graphic. Students will learn how to improve the development, organization, and diction in the passages to ensure they conform to conventional standards of English grammar, usage, and style. As part of the course, students will continue to take timed tests in the workshop and at home to track progress and understand the gaps in learning. Overall, students will learn the key test-taking strategies and become an effective and confident test taker upon completing this course.

SAT Prep for Reading and Writing 

  • Over four months of coaching and targeted practice
  • Includes all Reading/Writing materials and tests
  • Diagnostic Test and Analysis to understand strengths and challenge areas
  • Personally tailored lessons to target challenge areas for each student
  • Strategies to Maximize Test Score
  • Reading Strategy with core/critical reading concepts for evidence-based reasoning
  • Grammar Strategy with exhaustive grammar rules that will help students tackle any grammar question
  • Vocabulary Strategy with online vocabulary program help
  • Essay Strategy with concept and theme review, diction and syntax corrections, literary devices, tone, and mood etc. Sample Essays
  • At least four scheduled, fully-proctored practice tests to gain authentic timed-testing experience

Reading Comprehension, Critical/Close Reading & Writing – The cornerstone of good writing and overall academic success is reading and effective comprehension. In this course, students will learn how to read and comprehend well using effective reading strategies and will also understand the nuances involved in critical and close reading. Close reading is thoughtful, critical analysis of a text that focuses on significant details or patterns in order to develop a deep, precise understanding of the text’s form, craft, meanings, etc. It is a key requirement of the Common Core State Standards and Standardized tests and directs the reader’s attention to the text itself. Students will also learn effective annotating and note-taking skills as part of this course.

The reading workshop format gives students tools for reading assigned and self-selected literature and will help students who were once reluctant to read the skills needed to be successful readers. Over the course of the session, students read several books exploring different genres, authors, and texts.

The program lays a great emphasis on the interaction between readers and text. Students learn to ask questions, make connections with prior knowledge and previously read texts, and ask questions to clarify faulty comprehension they recognize has occurred.

Other reading strategies that students explore will include,
  • Reread & Skim
  • Use Context Clues
  • Infer & Think Aloud
  • Locate Key Words
  • Make Predictions
  • Use Word Strategies
  • Visualize
  • Use Graphic Organizers
  • Evaluate Understanding
  • Summarize
  • Paraphrase
  • Annotate
  • Adjust Reading Rate (Pace)
  • Prioritize Information
  • Use Graphic Note Taking
  • Set a Reader Purpose
  • Text-connections (text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world)
  • SSQ (Stop, Summarize, Question)

To view the schedule alone, click the image below.

2018_Workshop_Schedule_Updated

Based on waitlists, increased interest, and time availability of the coach, a new class not listed on the schedule currently, may be opened up. So kindly complete the registration even if a particular class becomes full at the time of registration.)

At the Young Writers’ Workshop, your child will…

Lose the fear of writing
Learn the proper usage of grammar and syntax
Learn the writing process thoroughly
Learn to ace every writing assignment
Write to prompts with structure and ease
Write about topics that matter 
Write creatively in a variety of genres
Develop a strong writing habit and 
Take pleasure in writing

Looking forward to another wonderful season of effective writing!