Monday, June 16, 2014
Review: Writing Fiction In High School by:Sharon Watson
About the Book:
Does your teen love to write stories? Does he or she want to be a positive Christian influence in the world through fiction?
Sharon Watson, author of Apologia Press's popular middle school writing curriculum JUMP IN, offers Writing Fiction [in High School], an exciting, new textbook specially designed for your homeschool, private school, or Christian teen. Writing Fiction [in High School] is written to the student in a conversational tone and requires only minimal parental/teacher guidance. It's packed with literally hundreds of age-appropriate, real-fiction examples from classics, best-sellers, and movies so students can learn how to write their own intriguing short stories or novels.
Your students will study and practice essential elements of storywriting and learn to critique their own work and classmates', too. In addition, they'll discuss important ideas about fiction in their groups formed from class members, co-op classes, or friends.
Writing Fiction [in High School] refers to The Last Book in the Universe by Rodman Philbrick (sold separately) in many of its chapters. Sharon Watson recommends buying that book and using it with the textbook. That way, students can more easily see how a complete novel and its elements work as they discuss characters, characterization, setting, meaningful discriptions, dialogue, voice, plot, scenes, conflict, the hero's journey, and much, much more.
A manuscript track is included in the text so students who have written a short story or novel manuscript may work on it during this course. This track is completely optional.
About the Author:
Sharon Watson, author of Apologia Press's popular middle school writing curriculum JUMP IN, loves finding ways to make difficult writing tasks easy to understand and accomplish. She believes it is time for Christians to influence the culture through meaningful and entertaining fiction.
Sharon homeschooled her children for 18 years and has taught high school fiction writing, composition, and literature to local homeschool students and in all-day workshops. She has been a Christian since her youth; her textbooks reflect this worldview. She lives in Indiana with her husband, whom she met in college in upstate New York. They have three grown children and two grandchildren.
I have heard it said in the past that homeschoolers typically fall short on the subject of writing. They fall short possibly because, that there not much of an emphasis placed on it in the normal homeschool family. So after I pondered over this I realized that my children would need to get more familiar with writing because college professors would hold them to a higher standard and expect more and I wanted my children to be able to exceed their expectations. So with all that being said and the fact that I myself would absolutely LOVE to become a published author one day, I jumped at the chance to review, Writing Fiction In High School by Sharon Watson.
First of all, the author has done something great here, this is the best writing curriculum for high schoolers that I have seen in a long time---that is practical yet challenging. At the start she gives you a basic break down of the facts of fiction and after so many paragraphs during the lesson she gives you a writing assignment that would show the parent/teacher what in that lesson that the student/child learned. It is in the breaking down of each point that she assigns them a task, which is a brilliant way to see what they learned now as opposed to a lengthy chapter and then we hope they got it. This is a high school writing course perfect to earn an English credit.
The author doesn't come up short in the teachers guide either. We sometimes find it difficult to "grade" writing, so to clear a lot of this up she guides the parent/teacher throughout the whole process in a question type format to see if the child was able to do as instructed. My daughter really enjoyed this process of writing it was easy for her to understand and it covers two whole semesters worth of English credit. The student text is available here for $25.05 and the teachers guide is also available, here for $9.95. The content involved is age appropriate and written conversation style to help relate to the teen more.
The curriculum allows you the parent to be as involved as you want to be and prepares your child to just learn more about the process of writing fiction or to actually get published one day. There are also free samples available to you on the authors website and posted here and here of each text---the student text and the teachers guide respectively. Writing with Sharon Watson also has many other writing curriculum's for the younger grades as well and another one written for your high school student those are available here.
If you would like to read more reviews on this awesome writing curriculum as well as others, follow this link.
**Disclosure** This curriculum was provided to me at not charge for my honest review by the author and part of my participation with Home & School Mosaics.