Writer's Jungle Guides Us To Successful Writers!
(Pine Valley, CA)
Product: The Writer's Jungle
Levels Used: One volume; used for children ages 8-14 (Grades 3-8)
Dates Used: 2001-present -- I think my copy is from the first printing.
Likes: Julie Bogart is unique among writing instructors in that she is not primarily an educator; she is a professional writer who happens to homeschool her five children. She recognizes aspects of teaching writing that other programs simply don't with their too-neat "Step 1, Step 2, Step 3 - Bingo! You child has written a paragraph!" approach.
Julie Bogart recognizes that writing is a messy, difficult process that can easily swamp our kids, leaving them frustrated and us moms discouraged. In _The Writer's Jungle_, Julie provides us moms with the tools we need to teach our kids not just "how to write" but how to "Become Brave Writers."
Writing is a set of skills, yes, but writing allows our children to express their true inside selves -- their hearts -- and how to encourage our kids to do so requires more than worksheets and checklists. Julie's unique approach educates US MOMS, so that we are equipped to deal with our reluctant writers who frown (or worse) upon hearing the word "write."
Although _The Writer's Jungle_ works well in helping us guide our happy writers through the jungle of writing, its main strength is in providing us with tools to help our reluctant writers through Partnership Writing, freewriting, and with games and activities that involve the whole family, all designed to shift our children from "doing an assignment" to truly "owning" their writing.
Writing is a process, a lifestyle even, one that allows mother and child to work side-by-side, each encouraging the other. And Julie Bogart brings these aspects of writing to life to help us nurture our "Brave Writers."
Dislikes: I would love to have more family-style activities to do with our kids. The ones in _The Writer's Jungle_ are truly wonderful, and more are suggested and practiced in the many online classes available at Brave Writer, but I'd love to have more of them listed and explained in _The Writer's Jungle_ itself.