How we roll around here…


This little snippet (click the image to enlarge and clarify) shows how we edit and score papers for webinar and online Independent Study students using iAnnotate on the iPad. We do the same for local co-op students, only those assignments are done on paper with fabulous pens from

This paper, from a Level 2 webinar class, was a 1-paragraph summary from an outside source about Emperor Justinian. You can see that the lesson included work with bibliographies and parenthetical references. The student included the bibliography entry below the paragraph, not shown in this picture. The student color-coded the required techniques from earlier lessons, which we made sure were used correctly. The editing codes refer to a grammar guide that explains the details behind every edit so the student can revise the paper correctly. The red box that falls off the right side of the page (with the 3) takes the student to a comment that gives suggestions for fixing that confusing sentence. The yellow shape at the bottom is part of a “thumbs up” stamp with a positive comment typed near it. We send such a draft back to the student who revises and submits one more time for a final score on the paper. When it comes to taking the mystery and misery out of learning to write, this is how we roll here at Writing Foundations!


I think I know what a humble little stone in a sling shot might feel just before being released into the wild blue yonder. I can feel the tension… pulling, pulling, pulling… back, back, back… and suddenly Tuesday morning I will be launched into the new school year!

I will have 17 classes this year, and most of them are filled to overflowing! It was a surprising turnout, considering the economy and all. I’m ready though. NerdGirl and I made over 70 handouts which multiplied to somewhere around 30,000 copies for 250 students.

I am down to just two of my own kids now that the oldest has packed up and moved on to college *sniff!!* Thankfully, I have had NerdGirl and Fashionista up and running on their own homeschool work for a couple weeks now. They also have their co-op texts, notebooks, and packpacks all ready to go.

So I was sitting here on this Labor Day Weekend (Ha! What an ironic holiday name when you are a teacher, right? ;-) ), and I got to thinking, I better make a schedule for next week so I know when to get up in the morning and where to be when… Good thought, huh?

[Read more…]

3 Types of Homeschool Co-Ops

WOW! It’s day 5 of the Back to Homeschool Blog Hop! The week’s last topic is Homeschool Co-Ops!


What do you get when you mix a bunch of homeschooling families with similarly aged kids? A co-op!

Co-ops can be great fun for the whole family and a worthwhile investment of your time and money. Just like the homeschoolers that they serve, co-op organizations come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Over the years, my family has taken part in 3 different kinds of co-ops: traditional, parent-support, and tutorial.

[Read more…]

Hewitt Lightning Lit: World Lit II Review

Hewitt Homeschooling Resources offers a comprehensive selection of literature courses for grades 7 through 12 called Lightning Literature and Composition. From basic classics like The Adventures of Tom Sawyer in American Literature, to British Literature, Shakespeare, and World Literature, Lightning Literature integrates literature, composition, and even an optional geography approach into one program.

Hewitt Homeschooling

As part of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, I was privileged to review Hewitt’s last course, Lightning Literature and Composition: World Literature II: Latin America, Africa, and Asia by Brenda S. Cox. World Lit II is comprised of a Student Guide ($29.95), and a Teacher’s Guide ($2.95), with a selection of books that can be purchased to make a set ($88.93 for both guides and texts) or as individual titles.

[Read more…]

5 Rules for Effective Communication with Online Teachers

When I teach writing classes online, all my interaction with students is conducted through the wonders of a chat screen and email. Student who are new to cyberschool situations may not realize that there are certain details to be aware of when communicating online.

Here are 5 rules for effective communication with online teachers:

[Read more…]

9 Tips for Successful Webinar Participation

Online classes via a live webinar setting are becoming more and more popular throughout the world. Students of all ages, from elementary to adult, are participating in all kinds of classes from math, writing, history, to literature and more.

Here is a list of 9 tips for a successful academic online class experience:

[Read more…]

The Homophone Game

Here’s something for other writing teachers out there – a homophone game!

This game will work with 1 to however many students you have. One student might keep a tally of how many answers he gets right in a round. Multiple students can compete against each other, or you can use a group elimination approach as I describe below.

I was cleaning out my shelves and ran across Susan Anthony’s Spelling Homophone book and was looking through how I might use it in my classes next year. Some students really struggle with they’re/there/their, to/too/two, and your/you’re/yore, etc. mistakes, so instead of making a bunch of boring worksheet handouts, I thought of a game to play instead.

[Read more…]

Left Brain vs Right Brain

Are You Left or Right Brain?
Via: Online College Advice