PROGRAM OVERVIEW

Incite to Write provides the tools for students to become powerful communicators in both written and spoken English. The Incite to Write program teaches grammar, sentence and paragraph structure, writing genres and composition, and critical and creative thinking skills. It teaches kids how to think, inquire, imagine and explore, and then it teaches them how to put that thinking into words.

The Incite to Write program never loses sight of the fact that writing and speaking are powerful tools for self-expression. The goal is for each student to become a strong communicator capable of authentically expressing his or her own unique voice.

Who is Incite to Write for?
  • Elementary and Middle School Students who:
  • love writing but desire an accelerated program
  • hate writing, struggle with writing, or find writing boring
  • scared to write or pick up a pencil
  • need an easy-to-understand yet sophisticated writing curriculum
  • need to address learning gaps
  • didn’t get it the first time
  • English Language Learners
  • kids who are homeschooled, unschooled or engaged in alternative education
A Note to Parents: Does your child struggle with writing?
According to the Nation’s Report Card, last year over 70% of students tested in grades 8 and 12 scored below proficiency in writing. If your child struggles with writing, chances are it’s a thinking problem more than a writing problem. Good writing skills depend upon good critical and creative thinking skills. When a student writes 3 sentences, stares at the ceiling and complains, “I can’t think of anything else to write”, that is a thinking problem, not a writing problem. The mechanics of writing are easy to master, just like the multiplication tables, but it is the thinking component of writing that makes it a high-level skill and one of the most difficult to master.

The good news is that critical and creative thinking skills are fun to teach and fun to learn. The Incite To Write program stimulates children’s thinking skills as they learn to master the art of inquiry. Strategies encourage them to explore, imagine, analyze and observe, and to take ownership of their thinking process. By the time students sit down to write, they are eager to pick up a pencil because they have so much to say. After all, that is the main purpose of writing to begin with, so it is no wonder kids stress over it if they have nothing to communicate or express.

With its emphasis on critical and creative thinking skills, Incite to Write has helped thousands of students over the past 18 years overcome their fear of writing and become confident in both written and spoken English. Students have learned to use the process of inquiry to sharpen their critical and creative thinking skills, and to become observant, curious and responsible participants in their education.

WINTER TALES 2018

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I remember going to Norway in the winter for my honeymoon. My husband and I arrived at this little town not far from a glacier, and there were beautiful woven Norwegian sweaters for sale at the village store. Lots of them. That's because most of the villagers knit all winter long, when they were snowbound and could do little else.

Winter was also a traditional time for storytelling in most countries. The crops had been harvested, and there was nothing to do but wait for the spring to come. People gathered around the home fire and told stories.

We're a long way from those days, but we still do occasionally get snowbound. And winter is still a time to "go inside" energetically-speaking. Winter also affords an opportunity for quality family time: our need to communicate and connect with each other is greater than ever in a world of constant texting.

So how do we tell stories in the 21st Century? I suggest making up your own. Story cubes (found on Amazon) are a great way to get the ball rolling. Story cubes are like dice with pictures on each side. Throw the dice and the picture suggests the character, problem, or solution to the story. Take turns, making it a group story. This is great for all ages, and fun for everyone. Why? Because you get to use your imagination and critical thinking skills. And you get to collaborate and be surprised by what another member of your family comes up with. You get to know each other a little better.

Believe it or not, we're all great at telling stories. We love to use our minds and create; we love to imagine. It's our human nature. Winter is a great time to discover and strengthen that creative muscle. (For more about creativity, see my 5-part blog.) To cap off your storytelling session, enjoy a homemade pie, or toast marshmallows. Some traditions just never die!

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Visit my new program, Storytellers & Writers, an after school dual language program that combines the Incite to Write strategies with storytelling.

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