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It's time for a good book

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

TOS Review: WriteShop

WriteShop Review

I am so excited to be among the reviewers for this WriteShop digital version of their WriteShop Primary: Book B Set, written by Nancy I. Sanders. The company sells books for a variety of age and grade levels, ranging from Grade K-6, but I got to review the level intended for first and second graders. This Book B level is also appropriate for reluctant third graders.

WriteShop Review   WriteShop Review
WriteShop Review

This Primary Book B teaches steps involved in the writing process. WriteShop uses activities, picture books, and crafts to create a fun way to learn.

The Teacher's Guide book comes in a soft-cover book with plastic-coil binding, and is 214 pages for $35.95, or the e-book for $29.50. There is also a reproducible Activity Set Worksheet Pack that can be purchased separately for $5.95 (24-page print version) or $4.50 (digital). The version I got to review was a completely digital WriteShop Primary: Book B Set, in PDF format.


There are 10 Lessons that include:

  1. Writing a Letter
  2. Standard Spelling
  3. Acrostics
  4. Poems and Nursery Rhymes
  5. Fairy Tales
  6. In the News
  7. Humor
  8. Problem and Solution
  9. Character and Setting
  10. Story Organizer

Each lesson spells out the Objectives, Advance Prep, Materials Needed, Lesson Overview and how to conduct the Activities.

By the end of Book B, it is expected that your child will have the skills to:
  1. Plan
  2. Create
  3. Publish Simple Stories with a Parent's Help
Book B introduces and teaches the following concepts:
  • Identify words that rhyme
  • Use a different voice to tell a story
  • Using a dictionary to help improve writing and spelling
  • Learn the concept of paragraph form and indentation
  • Standard spelling and using spelling tools
  • Choosing story endings
  • Use graphic organizers to plan a story
  • Include a Beginning, middle and end
  • Learn to add details
  • Organize a story to include a problem and solution
  • Write a friendly letter
  • Write a personal narrative
  • Retell nursery rhymes and fairy tales in his or her own words
  • "Publish" stories through projects and crafts.


The fortunate child in my household who got to experience the WriteShop Primary: Book B Set from WriteShop was my 7 year old. As a professional writer, I am always excited to introduce my children to writing curriculum.

This curriculum suggests that if your child is young or reluctant to write on his or her own, that you allow them to dictate their stories to you until their writing and handwriting skills develop. I thought I would have to have my daughter dictate some of what she wrote to me, but mostly she was able to write it all herself.

This curriculum really makes the process fun. My daughter loved the hands-on aspect, from coloring, to cutting, to making her own booklet, to tracing, to answering questions that really made her think, to drawing and tracing.


It was really fun to hear my daughter's 7-year-old mind at work when she answered questions in her own style. For instance, there was one point where the curriculum asked about an octopus who lost a shoe. I expected my daughter to simply answer the question, but she chimed in with questions about why an octopus would be wearing a shoe anyway.  Another example was with the nursery rhymes. One of the nursery rhymes featured Wee Willie Winkie. This was the first she had heard of him, and she could not get over how a man would run all around town in his nightgown. Though, I think they were part of the curriculum to help the children learn story problem solving and other skills, but these fun activities really got her little mind reeling.

While, the student activities are fun, what I found amazing about the curriculum is the effort put into the Teacher's Guide. Before the first lesson is even presented to begin following for the purpose of teaching, the Teacher's Guide spends quite a bit of time explaining that the purpose of the program is to have the parent spend time one-on-one with the child to work through the process of learning to write. The tips and instruction on these pages before the lessons even begin are really what forms the framework of the entire process. From there, each lesson is presented in such an easy-to-follow format. There are blue boxes set aside to alert the parent of any preparation needed. There are lists of picture books that are recommended to read and listed conveniently in the back of the book under each lesson. 

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See what other members of the Schoolouse Review Crew received and what they thought of their product by clicking on the picture below:
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  1. Tere, I'm so glad you and your daughter have enjoyed your experience with WriteShop Primary B. I love that the lessons inspired some fun conversations, and I'm thrilled to hear how motivated she was to do some writing on her own. Thanks for taking time to write such a thoughtful review!

  2. How funny about the octopus and wee Willie winkie! :)