The workshop, conducted via email, is simple, convenient, affordable and effective. Parents must have access to the email account their child uses so they can monitor progress and provide oversight.
I accept one email per day per student, which can be sent to me at any time. Siblings can share a course, but the “one email” rule still applies. Parents can send one email per day too, in addition to the one the student may send.
I will respond within 24 hours, Monday–Friday, excluding some holidays.
Students are under no obligation to respond within a certain timeframe. They can write to me once per day, once per week, whatever works for them (and their parents).
Those are the basics. The rest can be customized according to your needs. I am happy to help students with writing projects that have been assigned through another curriculum or with projects that we initiate together. (See Project Options.) I can work with your child on a project that is already underway or we can start a new one “from scratch.” Just let me know what you have in mind.
On the first day, we get acquainted, talk about goals and pick our first project. The student and I will usually take it step by step, sometimes paragraph by paragraph, working together through all phases of the writing process (brainstorming, outlining, first draft, revision), which I break down into manageable pieces, depending on the project. If the student prefers to write first drafts independently, we can skip right to the feedback and revision phase.
Pace, intensity, content of the course: It’s all up to you. I am here to help if you don’t know where to start. Think of me like a consultant. If you can tell me a little bit about what you need, I can design a course or a plan of action to meet your needs and help you achieve your goals.
“Is this a writing class?”
Not really, because there is no curriculum set in stone. There are no “canned” lessons.
After we decide on goals and pick a project, the course progresses and lessons arise organically. I am continually assessing a student’s strengths and weaknesses, identifying teaching points, and prioritizing them according to age, ability, goals, and other factors.
The student does not enroll at a certain grade level or with peers. We work together one-on-one. I meet the student at his current skill level.
Also, writing is rewriting. I always stress the importance of revision. So I call it a “workshop” or a “course” instead of a class.
The minimum length of a course is one month. If you’re feeling uncertain, please give it a try and see how it goes. A one-month course is only $75. You can also read Why It Works, if you’re not quite sold!
About 75 percent of my clients are homeschoolers. As a Catholic, I am happy to provide a service that supports parents who want to educate their own children for religious reasons. However, I work with homeschoolers of all stripes, as well as students who are enrolled in traditional schools.
Though my students live all over the world (in Japan, Paraguay, China, and Alaska), I hope to facilitate some gatherings in Georgia if there is enough local interest, so that student writers of similar ages who enroll in my workshop can meet, make friends, support each other, and maybe read their work aloud.
Though most of my clients are in grades 4-12, I have worked with college students and adult learners, too. Ms. Scribbles’ Workshop is a big tent! All those who want to become better writers are welcome, regardless of age, religious affiliation (or non-affiliation), race, shoe size, ice cream flavor preference, and all that other stuff.
“Do you teach ESL?”
I am not certified to teach ESL (English as a second language). It is not my specialty. The workshop probably works best for native English speakers, but if you are more or less fluent in English, I can probably help you.