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Kim Kautzer

Kim is a veteran homeschooler, author, and conference speaker. Kim loves to help parents feel more confident about teaching writing. With a heart to inspire and equip apprehensive parents, Kim encourages homeschoolers that teaching writing is much more objective than they think, and that with the right tools at their fingertips they can lead and motivate their struggling writers. Award-winning WriteShop, her unique and successful writing program, has been honored as one of Cathy Duffy’s 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum. Kim and her husband Jim homeschooled for 15 years. Two of their three children have graduated from Christian universities, and their son is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in theology. The Kautzers enjoy their passel of grandchildren and their sometimes-empty nest in Southern California. Kim blogs about writing at www.writeshop.com/blog.

Writing 100-word Stories

by Kim Kautzer
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Challenge your 4th-8th graders to write 100-word stories! Not only will this activity appeal to more reluctant writers, it helps drive home the importance of writing descriptive, concise sentences. Continue reading »

Spring into Writing

by Kim Kautzer

Spring has sprung… along with a serious bout of spring fever! How can you help your children stay on task while allowing them to revel in the joy of an April morning? For a welcome break, why not take writing outdoors now and then as the weather beckons?
Continue reading »

Getting More Mileage from Writing Assignments

by Kim Kautzer

Writing a composition doesn’t necessarily mean starting from scratch. As your children practice writing different kinds of paragraphs, stories, articles, and short reports, you can help them expand their skills by tweaking a piece of writing they completed in the past. What a great way to get more mileage out of a writing assignment! Let me share six tips for taking a former piece of writing to a whole new level. Continue reading »

Speed Scrabble: Boost Spelling and Vocabulary

by Kim Kautzer
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Pre-writing activities disguised as games make it so much more fun to learn and practice skills. Depending on the activity, you can teach or reinforce spelling, grammar, vocabulary, and writing. One of my family’s new favorites, Speed Scrabble (also known as Boardless Scrabble), would be a terrific way to address both spelling and vocabulary. Continue reading »

Editing Tips for Reluctant Moms

by Kim Kautzer

Because writing is a process of discovery, it’s doubtful that your student’s first draft will be his best work. Mind you, he will beg to differ. Why, he already likes it the way it is! But whether or not he agrees that his composition should be edited, the truth is that every paper benefits from a second opinion. No matter how many times your child reads and re-reads his own writing, it’s easy for him to miss typos, grammar goofs, or awkward sentences. He knows what he meant to say, so that’s what he sees. Continue reading »

Writing a Holiday “How-to” Paragraph

by Kim Kautzer
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As holiday decorations come out and the tree or menorah take center stage, children can become increasingly distracted, sidetracked, and fidgety in anticipation of upcoming seasonal celebrations.

Homeschooling doesn’t need to fall by the wayside during December! The holidays can be a great time to assign writing activities that focus on the festivities, allowing children to immerse themselves in the fun while encouraging productivity. This month, have your kids write a paragraph describing a holiday-themed process where they explain, in a step-by-step manner, how something is done. Continue reading »

Homeschool Writing: LEGOS Don’t Build Themselves, You Know!

by Kim Kautzer

Just as a LEGOS™ vehicle can’t take shape without the intentional efforts of a builder, your child cannot learn to write without intentional effort from you. At conferences and conventions, we often hear parents ask, “How much time does this writing program require of ME?” We’re a busy bunch, so believe me when I tell you I understand what it’s like to homeschool while trying to juggle laundry, meal preparation, ministry obligations, and a social calendar. But I also learned during my 15 years of homeschooling that certain subjects just don’t teach themselves, and writing is one of them. Continue reading »

Describing a Person: Adding Details

by Kim Kautzer

Lesson 3 [of the WriteShop curriculum] presents a unique set of problems for students. They must describe a person in detail and place the subject in a setting; yet they must not end up writing a narrative, or story. Even with WriteShop’s careful guidelines and instructions, many still end up focusing on the activity and Continue reading »

Choosing Color Words When Writing

by Kim Kautzer

You have been working on concreteness. Your student is excited to discover a world of new words in his thesaurus and WriteShop word lists. As a parent, you want to allow him to flex his creative muscles, yet you want to guide him so he learns to choose suitable words. This article focuses on picking Continue reading »