Writing Strands Unraveled
Product: Writing Strands
Levels Used: 2 and 3
Dates used: 2000
Likes: This is a step by step approach, with short assignments building up to a finished product. (i.e. Describe this object: This is a pencil. This is a long pencil. This is a yellow pencil. This is a long yellow pencil.)
There are 15 assignments in level 2, covering topics such as adjectives, listing, reporting, paragraphing, grouping, dialogue, letter writing, comparison, greeting cards (rhyming), etc. It is intended to be used 4 days/week, alternating weeks with a reading program such as Reading Strands, thus providing a full year of language arts.
Levels 3-7 are written with the expectation that the child will read and complete the assignment independently. This program might be good for students who need very concrete information, simple directions, and short assignments
Dislikes: The process is broken down into such small steps that children (and parents) may find it very tedious. For example, the first lesson of level 3 states its objectives as follows “It will take you three days to learn that you can follow directions if you try… how to write a sentence… that you can write good sentences while following directions.” Although the author makes an attempt to engage them, students may feel they are being talked down to.