Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.
I have been looking for a creative writing supplement to round out my daughter’s language arts studies. Creative Word Studio‘s offers the perfect resource for us with their Sparkling Bits of Writing Book 2. The companion to this, Sparkling Bits of Writing Book 1 is recommended for grades 5-6 and Book 2 is recommended for grades 7-8 as well as high school students who can use help with their writing skills.
Jennifer Yoder, the creator of Creative Word Studio, gives us an interesting, fun and methodical approach to improving writing skills. Her goal was to help students write in a more natural, comfortable way with their own personal flair.
The consumable workbook is 150 pages, with 75 lessons. It’s purpose it to supplement a student’s language arts program, so completely 2-3 lessons a week is the recommended schedule for a school year.
There are three types of lessons:
- Free Writing Exercises
- Reading Response Lessons
- Mini Writing Activities
For the free-writing assignments, students are asked to do just that – write freely. The may be asked to write a grocery list by creating similes of things like a bucket of ice cream, a gallon of milk. Or they might be asked to write a letter about how to help save an endangered species.
Students read excerpts from classic literature such as Little Women, Daddy Long Legs, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Dickens’ A Christmas Carol as well as from the Bible for their Reading Response Lessons. As you’d expect, student answers questions or completes activities based on their reading in that lesson.
The Mini Writing Activities are where the creativity can really take off. Your child might be making word clouds or rewriting famous cliches. They may be asked to write alliterations with purpose, not overdoing them as many authors do. One lesson asks your writer to use colored pencils to ‘pain’ an abstract noun with words.
At the beginning of the book, the Instructions page is directed to the student. I really appreciated this because I wanted my daughter to write without the pressure of thinking I was calling all the shots and looking over her shoulder for every tiny mistake. Reading through this gave her enough confidence to get started.
There are lessons labeled with a “gold piece” – a symbol printed on the page that alerts students to edit and polish that particular piece so that it can be given to teacher/parent for grading. This is helpful to both student and teacher, as we want to see them growing in their writing. We do need to have a way of evaluating progress.
Also included at the end of the book is a page to help student and teach know what is expected when it comes to grading their work. There is a rubric for grading “gold pieces” as well as a list of 10 writing tips that will help set your writer up for quality work.
Although the lessons follow a basic rhythm and format, each one is unique. Bekah found the lessons easy to pick up and get started all on her own. Because each day brings something new, she looks forward to the challenge and surprise, ready to discover and give it a try. She has often dragged her feet when it came to creative writing programs, but with Sparkling Bits of Wisdom it’s a different story! She’s enjoying the assignments and her writing skills are improving!
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