Writing & Rhetoric Book 4: Chreia & Proverb Student Edition

Writing & Rhetoric Book 4: Chreia & Proverb Student Edition

# 007941

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Item #: 007941
ISBN: 9781600512421
Grades: 4-6

Product Description:

Publisher Description:

A Creative Approach to the Classical Progymnasmata. Think of the progymnasmata as a step-by-step apprenticeship in the art of writing and rhetoric. What is an apprentice? It is a young person who is learning a skill from a master teacher. Our students will serve as apprentices to the great writers and great stories of history.

Students are often expected to write with no clear model before them. Modern composition scolds traditional writing instruction as rote and unimaginative. It takes imitation to task for a lack of freedom and personal expression. And yet, effective communication from writer to reader always requires some sort of form and structure. Many of history's greatest writers learned by imitation. In other words, writing takes the same kind of determined study as ballet or diving. Creativity uses conventional form as a stage or a springboard from which to launch grand jets and somersaults. Too often students are expected to tackle complex writing assignments without learning the necessary intermediate steps. The assumption is that because most everyone can speak English well enough to be understood, and form letters with a pencil, that everyone should be able to write well. Yet how many of us would expect a child to sit at a piano, without piano lessons, and play a concerto? Writing is never automatic.

The Writing & Rhetoric series method employs fluent reading, careful listening, models for imitation, and progressive steps. It assumes that students learn best by reading excellent, whole-story examples of literature and by growing their skills through imitation. Each exercise is intended to impart a skill (or tool) that can be employed in all kinds of writing and speaking. The exercises are arranged from simple to more complex. What's more, the exercises are cumulative, meaning that later exercises incorporate the skills acquired in preceding exercises. This series is a step-by-step apprenticeship in the art of writing and rhetoric.

The word chreia (cray-ă) comes from the Greek word chreiodes (cray-o-dees), which means "useful. It is a short essay or remembrance that praises the author of a saying or proverb and shows why the saying is useful. This book employs all the skills of the preceding books in the series and teaches students how to write a six-paragraph essay on the basis of a saying or an action. The thinking and exercises occur within the framework of the stories which, in this book, include wonderful historical figures such as King Arthur, King Alfred, Lady Godiva, King Canute, Omar Khayyam, and more.

The six-paragraph essay using the five Ws (who, what, when, where, why) is arranged this way:

  • Praise the person or saying of your chreia or proverb
  • Restate the saying in your own words
  • Explain why this is useful
  • Contrast your example with another person in history
  • Compare your example with another similar example in history
  • Epilogue concludes your essay

Includes 12 lessons, 9 of which are chreia (short essays or remembrance that praises the author of a saying and shows why the saying is useful) based on sayings (proverbs) from historical figures: King Solomon, King Arthur, King Alfred the Great, King Canute, Two Medieval Poets, Francis of Assisi, Queen Elizabeth I, Lady Godiva, and King Richard III plus 3 introductory lessons detailing the process of writing a chreia. Utilizes skills learned in previous books and teaches the six-paragraph essay.

Category Description for Writing & Rhetoric:

What! Another writing program? It's easy to imagine such a question popping up since we do have a number of excellent writing programs already available. This one is a worthy addition. First of all, it follows the classical model for teaching writing (and rhetoric) skills. What exactly does that mean? It means a program that is, in essence, a step-by-step apprenticeship in the art of writing and rhetoric. It's a program that believes that imitation is the foundation for learning writing and at the same time provides an easy to use framework for starting with models of good writing, building a "conversation in the head" (in other words, content through discussion and writing exercises), and for following the persuasive writing system developed by the ancient Romans. This system - the progymnasmata (progym, for short) - takes the student from simple retelling skills through the more and more complex skills of reporting, narrating, praising, comparison, persuasion, and defense. Modern writing borrows heavily from these skills, but the underlying methodology is distinctly different. Modern writing courses emphasize mastering the writing process and gaining experience with the different forms of writing. Accordingly, they often start with a blank sheet of paper and a brainstorming session. The progym, on the other hand, starts with well-known and excellent writing models (also known as classic literature).

Secondly, this program is user-friendly with virtually no teacher prep needed and the possibility of a minimum of teacher-student interaction (although interaction is always a plus). The publisher is the same one who has given us Latin for Children and Latin Alive! They know how to do user-friendly (and appealing). Even if you had no inkling of the meaning of a classical writing program, this would be an excellent choice. The Student Books provide instruction and examples with plenty of space to write. The Teacher Books have identical pages to the student books but add grey boxes which provide additional info, writing samples, answers and talking points. The two books are designed to be used together, and I think it would be unwise and difficult to try to use one without the other.

The lessons follow a pattern. The teacher reads through the text followed by a subsequent reading by the student (in upper levels, the student reads through the text examples). Narration (Tell It Back), discussion (Talk About It), and comprehension (Go Deeper) are all part of this initial look at the source material. Then starts the writing exercises (Write & Discuss). To give you an example of these, from one lesson in Book 2, copywork, dictation, sentence play, copiousness (using synonyms), and amplification (rewriting). Later in the lesson there is a time for reading/presenting the lesson's written work and separate Speak It exercises. It's suggested that this writing series would alternate with a grammar program (although no recommendations are made).

Each book is a semester's worth of writing instruction, with a total of twelve books planned. In a perfect world, a student would start in 3rd grade and complete the series in 8th grade. If your world isn't quite perfect, this series could be started anytime up to 5th or even 6th grade (in my opinion). Students beginning this program should know how to identify and create a complete sentence. It is possible to enter the program at upper levels but requires careful evaluation of the student's writing experience and the scope of the level. Some familiarity with the Progym series would also be helpful. You may wonder how this series interfaces with Common Core. The publishers note that their program "covers a host of these standards." But they further note that "while these goals are worthwhile, the Progym derive their strength from the incremental and thorough development of each form of writing. The Writing & Rhetoric series does not skip from form to form and leave the others behind, but rather builds a solid foundation of mastery by blending the forms."

Optional audio CDs are also available for each volume, which feature Dr. Christopher Perrin, his wife, Christine Perrin and/or others, reading the fables, myths, historical narratives and other source material used in the books aloud, to either add an auditory dynamic to your lesson or help auditory learners enhance their understanding of the material. Packages are available for most levels. ~ Janice

Category Description for COMPLETE ENGLISH PROGRAMS:

These materials offer complete coverage of both writing and grammar.

Primary Subject
Grade Start
Grade End
Paul Kortepeter
Brand Name
Classical Academic Press
1.0 (lbs.)
11.0" x 8.5" x 0.5"
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Why did you choose this?
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Need the next book in the series. We love this program!
Julia H on Apr 15, 2021
We love the stories and progressive approach to writing by doing copy work, dictation, summary, and creating your own writing.
Mary A on Nov 30, 2020
Need the next book in the series. We love this program!
Julia H on Apr 15, 2021
Michelle V on Jan 14, 2021
We love the stories and progressive approach to writing by doing copy work, dictation, summary, and creating your own writing.
Mary A on Nov 30, 2020
Starting W&R with my 6th grader
Bonnie H on Oct 11, 2020
My son needs a writing component to his LA subject and Lifepac isn't working for him.
Tanya S. on Sep 20, 2020
love this series!
Jamie H on Aug 10, 2020
Carla K on Dec 23, 2019
I am keen to use this book with my budding writer.
Gaylene J on Oct 23, 2019
We used this at our Co-op and had success with it so we are continuing on to the next two books this year. Easy to understand and work through. Stories are quality. Be aware that your child will be doing alot of writing but the pay off is great.
Amy J on Aug 30, 2019
It is the next in the series that my daughter is already working through.
Meagan S on Aug 23, 2019
We have previously used this curriculum and love it
Kristin S on Aug 6, 2019
writing program is very clear, consistent with enjoyable reading content
Beth D on Jul 5, 2018
wanted- you're a good supplier
Ali R on Feb 23, 2018
I used books 1-2 and want to continue with the program
Michelle T on Dec 20, 2017
My kids started out with Book 1 of this series and enjoyed it. We did Books 2 & 3, then moved onto another writing program. My kids didn't like it, so we can back to Writing and Rhetoric.
Cory B on May 6, 2017
My daughters, one who loves to write and one who dreads it, both love this series of writing books. They work through them together, and even though they are at different levels, both are showing progress.
Sharon P on Feb 3, 2017
The Writing and Rhetoric series has been hands down the best curriculum for my son who struggles to compose and put his thoughts on paper. I highly recommend this curriculum. The Teacher Edition is also so simple to use, this is a very open and go curriculum. Highly recommended!
User on Aug 20, 2016
homeschool group class
Janet C on Jul 18, 2016
Daughter has used the first three Writing and Rhetoric books, has enjoyed them and they are improving her writing.
Mark G on Mar 17, 2016
Next semester's writing program
Cheri W on Nov 9, 2015
Michelle V on Jan 14, 2021
Starting W&R with my 6th grader
Bonnie H on Oct 11, 2020
5.0 / 5.0
2 Reviews
5 Stars
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1 Star
Rated 5 out of 5
Hey Mom, want to hear the sentence I just wrote?
So far my son and I have loved the Writing and Rhetoric program. I think it is challenging without overdoing it. (Why write variations of a model sentence 20 times when 4 well crafted variations will do?) My son enjoys the stories and often asks me to listen to each....and....every....sentence he writes. He is so thrilled with his output. And he has decided that he wants to be an author someday, which is significant since he is severely dysgraphic.

I have made adaptations in this book on the major writing assignments, since it skips from short narratives in the previous book to 6 paragraph essays, and my son isn't quite ready for the writing load. His charter school teachers are thrilled with his writing.
April 28, 2016
Rated 5 out of 5
Singapore Earlybird Math really works for us My 5-year-old daughter responds well to the fun illustrations and colorful yet not cluttered pages The way it introduces concepts is excellent For example it has the child count objects to see that 2 and 2 are 4 then progresses to writing it in a number sentence of 2+2=4 My daughter easily learned addition without even realizing it! It's so much better than just forcing her to memorize the math facts When she wants to figure out a number concept in everyday life I see her using Singapore-type methods to come up with a solution She'll draw two sets of circles in a notebook to figure out an addition problem that without Singapore I'm sure would be far too hard for her at this age I've heard some say they didn't like that Singapore does not repeat the same concepts over and over or that there isn't extensive practice but my daughter has not seemed to need it In fact I'm sure she would be bored with repetition once she understands a concept So far she says math is one of her favorite subjects I appreciate that teacher's notes are at the bottom of each page While they're meant for a classroom I have had no problem easily adapting them for homeschool The notes give activity ideas to bring the math concepts to life
December 3, 2007

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