Laurel Tree Tutorials
challenging and thoughtful English instruction for homeschoolers
Introduction to Composition

Introduction to Composition

Young students asked to write a paper often feel lost, wondering where to start. What should they write about? What should the finished product even look like? Introduction to Composition is intended to give such students both skill and confidence. The class teaches how to write clearly and creatively, using composition to express important ideas.

Introduction to Composition is designed for homeschoolers in 6th-8th grades.

Course Objectives: Students will become comfortable in a variety of genres (descriptive, persuasive, comparative, research, short story, and more). They will sharpen writing and grammar skills through constant practice and response to instructor's comments. Those skills include developing arguments and explanations in writing, and exploring the possibilities of words to develop a natural, interesting style.

Students will acquire research experience (MLA format) while writing a research essay. Finally, they will learn how to work with other writers, giving and receiving constructive criticism, and how to work within schedules and budget time in order to meet deadlines.

Dates and Logistics: Our school year includes two fifteen-week semesters (August 29-December 18 and January 16-May 7). Students take a one-week Thanksgiving Break in the first semester, a one-week Spring Break in the second semester, and a four-week vacation for Christmas.

Weekly assignments and study guides are sent via email on Wednesday mornings. Students complete homework during the week, then submit it via email and/or online forums by Tuesday night. Students are encouraged to contact the instructor throughout the week with any questions, or if they'd like to discuss a topic further. In addition, online forums provide an excellent way to interact with classmates.

Laurel Tree Tutorials composition courses operate in asynchronous time: students need not be online at a specific time. Instead, they complete the assignments and their own pace during the week.

Computer Requirements: Readily accessible internet and e-mail, inbox space for attachments up to 100 KB, and Microsoft Word (including ability to open Word 2007 documents).

Student Requirements: Students must be self-motivated and take responsibility for their homework. Parents are welcome to assist their children, but students must ultimately do their own work and keep deadlines conscientiously.

Students should also have a good grasp of basic English grammar. We will not spend a large amount of time on grammar, though the required textbook will be very helpful for explaining difficult concepts.

Required Text: Painless Grammar by Rebecca Elliot, PH.D

Cost: $550 per student

This class requires a minimum of three students. If you enroll but that number is not met by the end of July, class will be cancelled and you'll be fully refunded immediately.

To request a sample syllabus or application, please contact the instructor, Rebekah Randolph: Application and registration opens on March 1.

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