The Art of Writing an Essay

A happy and blessed Easter to you all! This past year, my oldest daughter has been writing essay after essay: essays for English and history classes, essays for college applications, essays for scholarships… it never seems to end.

“Since you are so experienced at writing essays,” I suggested, “why don’t you write an essay on how to write an essay? You know — for the plebians like us.”

So she did. Well, the essay was so witty and clever, I just had to share. Because sometimes we all just need a good chuckle:

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How We Use FaceTime to Improve Writing and Reading

A little background….Mary and I met over 15 years ago in Tempe, Arizona when our husbands were in graduate school at Arizona State.  We have been great friends for such a long time.  God has blessed our families with kids who are the same age and sex and obviously, the call to homeschool.   We now live in different states but try to get together several times per year.  The kids disappear for the weekend, the husbands work on research, and Mary and I laugh, serve meals, and talk about all kinds of great stuff!

A few years ago we decided to meet weekly via FaceTime to work on writing.   We wanted our oldest daughters especially to have more time together.  What we didn’t realize was how effective our weekly meetings would be.

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The Chicken Scratch Solution: How to get Your Kids to Write Neatly

This year has been a struggle getting one of my sons to write neatly. Sometimes his handwriting is so atrocious I go cross-eyed trying to decipher his hieroglyphics. Okay, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But he does like to produce chicken scratch.

In the beginning of the year, we had some real battles… Feisty and I. He would give me a scribbly assignment and I would make him rewrite it. (That’s what tiger moms do, even lame ones.) You can imagine the griping and fuming that ensued. But I would hold my ground and he would have no choice but to rewrite that assignment in a legible manner. And then he would hold his ground: the next day his handwriting would be as messy as ever.

I needed to find a way to end the daily struggle. And little by little I did. Now Feisty’s handwriting is legible about 70% of the time. More importantly, he’s sincerely trying to write neatly… when I remind him. But here’s what helped:

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