for Middle School 1:
Foundations of Composition
Suggested Grade Level: 7th or 8th grade
Help your middle school student gain writing confidence and become a skilled writer with an introduction to informative, expressive, and persuasive writing, including choosing strong and clear words, crafting strong sentences and paragraphs, and understanding how to write the parts of an essay with personal help and feedback on your work.
Your Course Description
In this course, your student will learn the skills and habits of strong and clear writing — and gain the critical foundations of essay writing needed for excellent high school writing. Learn the purposes of writing (expressing, informing, and persuading); the effect of your audience on your writing (key considerations for different audiences); and how to sculpt a piece of writing with direction (the characteristics of an effective introduction, body, and conclusion). You’ll learn how to strengthen your linear writing, add transitions for excellent paragraph writing, and get specific writing feedback from the instructor, to make your writing stronger.
Your Course Outline
Class 1: Writing for a purpose and audience: the “why” of writing
Class 2: Great word choice: how to choose the “right” word
Class 3: Strong sentences: how to write a great sentence
Class 4: Clear paragraphs: what makes a great paragraph/linear writing that makes sense to the reader
Class 5: Writing with direction: great introductions and the hook
Class 6: Writing with direction: great introductions and the thesis
Class 7: Writing with direction: the body (of your paper) and how to make it “shapely”
Class 8: Writing with direction: the conclusion
Your Course Details
Total Number of Classes: 8
Prerequisite: The writing courses build upon one another and 7/8 students are responsible for previously-learned content in the 6/7-series of courses. Therefore, 6/7-1, 6/7-2, 6/7-3, and 6/7-4 are required. If your student is unable to take the previous courses LIVE, then at a minimum, he or she can watch the recordings on Unlimited Access before taking this course. An alternative to the prerequisite: a passing assessment from the Aquinas Writing Advantage Assessment service. Please contact h[email protected] for any questions on permissions.
Suggested Grade Level: 8th or accelerated 7th grade
Duration: 55 minutes
Suggested Credit: One-half (½) of a semester’s credit for Writing or English
Follow with MS 7/8-2 for one (1) full semester’s credit for writing.
Course Materials: Course materials are included free. Microsoft Word or the ability to convert a document to a Word-compatible document is required, as all assignments are submitted in Word. If you do not own Microsoft Word, you can use a system such as Google Docs that converts to Word documents FREE.
Homework: Weekly writing assignments, with grading and direct feedback from the instructor. Estimated three (3) to four (3) hours per week for homework outside of class time, depending on the student’s ability.
How this course fits with your Middle School Writing courses...
|Fall Semester||Spring Semester|
** The 7/8-1 and 7/8-2 courses are consecutive courses. To create a full semester of Middle School Writing, sign up for the 7/8-2 course when you sign up for the 7/8-1 course.
Live, Interactive Courses
During the week, multiple course sections, times, and instructors are offered for this course. Sign up for the time and the instructor that best meets your needs. Click here to see the days and instructors for the LIVE course offerings — and to sign up for a LIVE course.
Recorded, Independent-Learning Course
When you sign up for Unlimited Access and take this recorded course, your instructor is the designer and Director of Aquinas Writing Advantage, Erin M. Brown, MA, MFA (aka author EB Conroy/Erin Brown Conroy).
Three Sign Up Options (Choose One)
1. Live, Interactive Course
Students attend a LIVE class in a virtual classroom on a specific day, at a specific time. After class (during the week), the student independently completes the coursework and weekly quizzes; the quizzes are graded automatically by the computer for instant feedback. Your instructor is available for communication outside of class via email, to help answer questions. Homework time outside of class is estimated to be one to three hours per week, depending on your student’s skills.
2. Unlimited Access: Recorded, Independent-Learning Course
When you take the Recorded course, you will independently view the recorded video lesson and complete the coursework in the learning management system. The homework’s weekly quizzes are graded automatically by the computer for instant feedback. With in-system grading provided, parents do not need to grade any work. There is an estimated one to three hours of homework/coursework per week outside of watching the weekly video lecture.
When you get “Unlimited Access,” you get 24/7 access to ALL of the writing courses — AND access to 400+ middle and high school courses, in all subject areas, for only $34.97 a month.
3. Unlimited Access with Instructor Access Grading Services
Instructor Access is an optional service, for an additional fee, that accompanies Unlimited Access. When you sign up for one-on-one tutoring with Instructor Access, in addition to the weekly quizzes that are graded automatically by the computer for instant feedback, the Instructor Access instructor will grade the worksheets submitted, and there is an estimated one to three hours per week for homework for your student outside of watching the video lecture. If you’d like Instructor Access, once you sign up for Unlimited Access, you’ll receive email instructions on how to sign up.
Specific Course FAQs
Is this course required? Can I skip this course?
Because the content in this program is sequential, for your student to be successful and not miss any prerequisite content, it is requested that he or she watch the videos of the 6/7 Series courses in Unlimited Access before entering the 7/8 Series courses.
Can I start the 7/8-1 course in January?
The LIVE 7/8-1 and 7/8-2 courses are held in the Fall Semester only. If you are beginning in January (or any other time of year), simply take the recorded course in Unlimited Access (with or without Instructor Access grading services).