So many students get burned out on writing before they've hardly begun, bogged down by complex grammar rules, inflexible formats, and uninteresting assignments. It shouldn't be that way. Writing should be an exciting subject, entered into as an adventure, for there are so many types of writing that every assignment can be enjoyable! This is the way that Gabriel Arquilevich, author of Writing for 100 Days, presents it. Predictably, the book contains 100 lessons, divided into four categories; composition, fiction, poetry, and writing in action. The lessons are short, flexible, and structured for use by the student alone, or for a teacher and student(s). The book kicks off with word usage and a review of punctuation. However, this is only brief review, and though exercises are given, supplemental practice would be helpful to keep those skills fresh. After the basics are reviewed, more punctuation, construction, tone, and style are covered in Composition. Fiction covers character creation, setting, plot, dialogue, and point of view. Poetry covers haiku, limericks, sonnet, free and blank verse, lyrics, and more. Writing in Action (the largest section) contains instruction on writing as part of daily life, such as business and personal letters, interviews, advertisements, reviews, columns, diaries, and greeting cards. The lessons, each covering a major facet of the big topic, are divided into two parts, the lesson and the writing. The introduction is clearly written, includes many examples, and is reader-friendly. Then the fun part - putting into action what you have just learned. The short assignments leave room for lots of creativity.
We are encouraged, no, told to learn from our mistakes as we write our pieces, and how to recognize familiar pitfalls. Yes, an important step of many of the assignments is to purposely write our piece exhibiting the featured foibles! In a lesson on wordiness, we're told to write a half-page description of an event, adding as much wordiness as possible. In a lesson on fragments and run-on sentences, we have to write a story - a one-page story with one sentence. Or, write a description of an unknown planet, with a catch - use no similes or metaphors. This not only makes errors much more noticeable, but also relays to us the importance of grammatical tools and variety in writing. (Oh, by the way, after you write your piece with the errors, you do go back and fix it.) At the end of each unit, you use all the components you've practiced to write your big composition, fictional story, sestina, and journalistic works.
For extra fun, several games are featured at the end of the book. Answers to the review questionaire also included. This is truly a "breath of fresh air" for any student, but especially to one who is having a hard time really enjoying the art of writing. 103 pages, pb. - Jess
Junior high and high school students will delight in this friendly, day-by-day guide tp writing. From the intricacy of sentence structure to the complexity of the sestina, this book is a comprehensive, engaging introduction to writing. Compostition-- A step beyond the rudimentary rules of usage and punctuation, these forty-eight days focus on word choice, sentence structure, style, and more. A variety of related (and original!) exercises and writing activities help bring learning into application. Included is a look at dashes, parentheses, colons, and semicolons. Fiction-- Beginning with character development, students lay the groundwork for a story in fifteen days. Studies of dialogue and point of view are provided. Poetry-- In these ten days, students practice a variety of forms, from the sonnet to song lyrics. Also included is a look at line break and imagery. Writing in Action-- These twenty-seven days introduce the student to a variety of nonfiction forms, including letter writing, speech writing, technical writing, journalism and advertising. This section also includes some unusual assignments, including an epistolary scene, imitating an author, and "fun and games" activities. In short, Writing for 100 Days is a valuable resource, offering a refreshing alternative to the standard textbook.
These materials contain both instruction and writing assignments but are not as broad in scope (types of writing) as the comprehensive programs.
These materials may offer some light grammar instruction, but the focusis mainly on writing of all types.