Archive for the ‘BW products’ Category

Simple Homeschool Gift Guide PLUS 15% discount on BW products!

Monday, December 1st, 2014

Image by Dana -blog

Check out Simple Homeschool’s

Holiday Gift Guide!

Also, take advantage of Brave Writer’s December discount:

From now until December 20, 2014
15% percent off Brave Writer products*
on orders of $50.00 or more
Code: HOLIDAYS

*Online classes do not apply

Image by Brave Writer mom, Dana (cc)

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Happy Birthday C.S. Lewis!

Saturday, November 29th, 2014

Lion witch wardrobeC.S. Lewis was born November 29, 1898, and to celebrate his birthday we’re offering the Arrow based on his book, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe:

Half price through midnight Monday ($3.95) THIS OFFER HAS EXPIRED

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is the first book (according to the original publication order) in Lewis’ acclaimed fantasy series, The Chronicles of Narnia. In the essay, ‘It All Began with a Picture,’ Lewis shared how the story originated:

The Lion all began with a picture of a Faun carrying an umbrella and parcels in a snowy wood. This picture had been in my mind since I was about sixteen. Then one day, when I was about forty, I said to myself: ‘Let’s try to make a story about it.’

That illustrates one of C.S. Lewis’ rules of writing. A student once asked Lewis for advice, and he encouraged young writers to “save odds and ends” for possible future use. Here are the rules in their entirety:

8 Writing Tips by C.S. Lewis

  1. Turn off the radio. [And if written today he might have added "television"]
  2. Read good books and avoid most magazines.
  3. Write with the ear, not the eye. Make every sentence sound good.
  4. Write only about things that interest you. If you have no interests, you won’t ever be a writer.
  5. Be clear. Remember that readers can’t know your mind. Don’t forget to tell them exactly what they need to know to understand you.
  6. Save odds and ends of writing attempts, because you may be able to use them later.
  7. You need a well-trained sense of word-rhythm, and the noise of a typewriter will interfere.
  8. Know the meaning of every word you use.

So, celebrate C.S. Lewis’ birthday plus take advantage of this special Arrow offer!

Also, if you’d like to buy a copy of the novel, it’s available through Amazon: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Full-Color Collector’s Edition (affiliate link).

The Arrow is a monthly digital product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. It’s geared toward children ages 8-11 and is an indispensable tool for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

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October’s Arrow and Boomerang selections!

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

The Arrow

HomesickHomesick: My Own Story by Jean Fritz

This fictionalized autobiography tells the heartwarming story of a little girl growing up in an unfamiliar place.

The Arrow is a monthly digital product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. It’s geared toward children ages 8-11 and is an indispensable tool for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

Purchase the Homesick Arrow here.

Buy the novel on Amazon here (referral link).

The Boomerang

What the Moon SawWhat the Moon Saw by Laura Resau

Out of the blue, 14-year-old Clara Luna receives a letter from her grandparents inviting her to spend the summer with them in Mexico. She has never met her fathers parents and he has not seen them since he left his homeland more than 20 years ago. Wary of visiting people she doesn’t know and yet frustrated and restless with her life at home, Clara embarks on the two-day journey to the remote village of Yucuyoo.

The Boomerang is a monthly digital downloadable product that features copywork, dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel, and a number of think piece questions. It is geared toward 7th to 10th graders (ages 12—advanced, 13-15).

Purchase the What the Moon Saw Boomerang here.

Buy the novel on Amazon here (referral link).

PLUS our online Boomerang Book Club (geared toward students in 8th grade and up) discussion of What the Moon Saw starts today!

Images @ Amazon.com

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Happy Birthday, Agatha Christie!

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Day 192: PoirotScreenshot from an adaptation of “Murder on the Orient Express”

In celebration of Agatha Christie’s birthday (born September 15, 1890), we’re making a special offer! The Boomerang for her novel, Murder on the Orient Express, is:

HALF PRICE for one day only! ($4.95) OFFER HAS EXPIRED

Agatha Christie is known as the queen of mystery novels. In the course of her lifetime, she penned sixty-six detective novels, twenty-two collections of short stories, eighteen plays, and multiple non-fiction works. Her beloved characters Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple have been honored with many television and film adaptations.

Here are some fascinating tidbits about Agatha Christie:

Until age twelve, Agatha Christie was homeschooled by her mother and a succession of governesses.

Christie’s first book, A Mysterious Affair at Styles, was rejected by six publishers over the course of five years before it was finally accepted for publication.

Her favorite writers were Elizabeth Bowen and Graham Greene.

Agatha Christie’s plays have been performed continuously for the last 53 years in London’s West End theaters.

Christie’s books rank immediately behind the Bible and Shakespeare for the highest number of copies sold worldwide. Her works have also been translated into more languages than any other literary work in history.

So, celebrate Agatha Christie’s birthday and take advantage of this special offer today!

Also, if you’d like to buy a copy of the novel, it’s available through Amazon: Murder on the Orient Express (affiliate link).

The Boomerang is a monthly digital downloadable product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. It is geared toward 7th to 10th graders (ages 12—advanced, 13-15) and is the indispensable tool for Brave Writer parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

Image by crimsong19 (cc)

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If your child is in the Jot It Down stage

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-boy-watching-mother-write-notes-sofa-writing-as-young-son-her-home-image31836350

Jotting down what your kids tell you isn’t a short cut to writing. It IS writing.
~from The Writer’s Jungle

Does your child excitedly share stories and experiences but is blocked when she tries to write them down? Does his writing not reflect his sophisticated vocabulary? Does she refuse to pen more than a word or two? Does he struggle with handwriting or spelling?

If you answered yes to any of these then your child may be in the Jot It Down stage.

Kids in that stage are often between the ages of five and eight, but age doesn’t matter so much. What matters is where they are in the Natural Stages of Growth.

If your child is in the Jot It Down stage then:

Forget all the scopes and sequences.

Focus on love, joy, and self-expression.

Read books together.

Watch movies together.

Have big, juicy conversations.

Play with words.

Catch your child in the act of thinking or storytelling and write down what he says.

Let her dictate with you acting as secretary.

With your child’s permission, share some of his thoughts and stories with family and friends.

This is how you slowly help your child see the value of putting thoughts into writing.

So, each time something happy happens, jot it down. Pay attention to your kids—as in, pay attention to their happiness quota. Play games, have tea, laugh at jokes, record the clever things your child says, have her write one beautiful word a day instead of a whole passage, use gel pens and brightly colored paper sprayed with perfume!

Continue to learn handwriting and spelling but do that through copywork not your child’s original thoughts.

For more information about this stage, listen to the free Jot It Down! podcast.

You might also consider our Jot It Down! product. It gives you ten original writing projects you can do with your children. These are activities (one per month) that enable you to focus the original writing impulse in a specific direction (fairly tales or writing letters or issuing party invitations). They are delight-driven writing activities and cover a range of writing skills. And your child never has to lift a pencil!

Or check out our Jot It Down! bundle and save. Includes:

Image © Photographerlondon | Dreamstime.com

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A Quiver of Arrows–on sale now!

Friday, August 8th, 2014

The Quiver of Arrows -blog

We are so excited to offer this product! If you feel like the Arrow is a bit too much (too mature, too difficult) for your kids then the Quiver is just for you because it’s geared to the younger crowd.

From our store page:

A Quiver of Arrows is a set of 10 Arrows especially designed for 1st and 2nd grades. The Arrow is a literature guide that teaches the mechanics of writing through copywork and dictation.

This particular set of ten uses shorter literature passages than our regular Arrows, and includes a French-style dictation passage each week. French-style dictation is a modified dictation practice that isolates individual words for spelling in context (full explanation of French-style dictation in the product itself).

The Quiver includes the following ten titles:

  • Sarah, Plain and Tall
  • The Trumpet of the Swan
  • The Mouse and the Motorcycle
  • Charlotte’s Web
  • Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze
  • Secret of the Andes
  • Mr. Popper’s Penguins
  • The Wheel on the School
  • Cricket in Times Square
  • House at Pooh Corner

Buy them as a set and save or purchase individual titles.

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Happy Birthday, J.K. Rowling!

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Harry PotterToday is July 31st, which happens to be the birthday of both J.K. Rowling and her most famous character, Harry Potter. To celebrate this most magical day, we’re making a special offer! The Arrow for Rowling’s first book, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, is:

HALF PRICE till midnight August 1st! ($4.95) OFFER HAS EXPIRED

Most of us know J.K. Rowling’s incredible rags-to-riches story. She scribbled the manuscript of Harry Potter in coffee shops as a broke single mother, not realizing that a few years later she would be the wealthiest author in history. If you haven’t heard the story, look it up!

Here, though, we’d like to take a look at the darker side of Harry Potter—the villains! Villains, after all, deserve their chance in the spotlight. So get out your villainous cape and your evil thinking cap and take the quiz below to see what Harry Potter villain you’d be!

Which Harry Potter Villain Are You?

1. What is your villainous costume?

a. Black and silver robe
b. Pink suit set
c. Ripped prison garb
g. Stylish lime green or magenta attire and two-inch-long crimson nails

2. You hear a kitten mewing for help. What do you do?

a. Send someone to silence it. You’ve got more important problems.
b. Hang a picture of a kitten on your wall.
c. Kill it.
g. Snoop around to discover what exactly happened to the kitten.

3. What is your animagus (animal) form?

a. A snake
b. A cat
c. You don’t need an animagus. You’re already practically an animal.
g. A beetle

4. Your hair is…

a. Nonexistent
b. Short and curly, with a black velvet bow perched on top like a fly
c. Wild and untamed
g. Bleached blonde

5. Favorite ice cream flavor?

a. Fountain of youth
b. Strawberry
c. Triple chocolate death
g. Crocodile-flavored, spiked with a truth telling serum

6. How do you prep for swimsuit season?

a. First, I’ve got to get a body…
b. Issue a decree prohibiting swimsuit season
c. Wipe out everyone wearing a swimsuit with the Avada Kedavra curse
g. Interview witches to learn their swimsuit secrets

The Results: If you got mostly…

a. Lord Voldemort: You’re the Lord of Villains. Also, you might be missing a nose.

b. Umbridge: You wear lots of pink, and if you don’t like the rules you change them.

c. Bellatrix Lestrange: If you can’t use it, you put a curse on it

d. Rita Skeeter: You’ve got great hair and a killer smile, and if you can’t find a good story you make one up.

So dive into the world of Harry Potter with our special Arrow offer!

And if you’d like to buy a copy of the novel, it’s available through Amazon: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (affiliate link).

Also, SUBSCRIBE TODAY to The Arrow (3rd-6th grades) or The Boomerang (7th-10th grades) for 2014-15!

The Arrow and The Boomerang are monthly digital products that feature copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. They are indispensable tools for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

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Happy Birthday, George Orwell!

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Animal Farm 1946 Jacket design by Art BrennerIn celebration of George Orwell’s birthday (111 years, born June 25, 1903), we’re making a special offer! The Boomerang for his novel, Animal Farm, is:

Half price for one day only: $4.95!

Orwell’s withering critiques of totalitarianism have become a cornerstone of modern Western thought. In Animal Farm, Orwell tells the story of a group of farm animals that revolt against human control. These animals begin with lofty ideals and 7 Commandments that slowly disintegrate to the famous phrase: “All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.”

George Orwell himself lived a fascinating life. He was one of the most influential political writers of the 20th Century, famous for such classics as 1984 and his satiric letter “A Modest Proposal.” He traveled widely—born in India, Orwell also worked in Burma, fought in Spain, and wrote as a war correspondent in WWII. Orwell’s real name was Eric Blair, but he chose his pen name for St. George, the patron saint of England, and the River Orwell.

As a writer, Orwell advocated using precise and clear language. In his essay “Politics and the English Language,” he lists six rules for writers:

1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.

2. Never use a long word where a short one will do.

3. If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.

4. Never use the passive where you can use the active.

5. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.

6. Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.

So, celebrate George Orwell’s “eleventy-first” birthday and take advantage of this special offer today!

Also, if you’d like to buy a copy of the novel, it’s available through Amazon: Animal Farm (affiliate link).

The Boomerang is a monthly digital downloadable product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. It is geared toward 7th to 10th graders (ages 12—advanced, 13-15) and is the indispensable tool for Brave Writer parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

Image of Art Brenner’s Animal Farm 1946 jacket design by Karen Horton (cc)

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Announcing the release of my Brand New Book!

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

A Gracious Space_Fall Edition 500x650CopyrightAll rights reserved

50 Daily Readings for Fall

Homeschooling can be a lonely road. You are at home with children, embarking on a task that changes every year (sometimes every month!) as your children grow and mature. The ability to sustain that commitment comes from sheer grit, idealism, faith, and trust. When in doubt, where do you turn? Some of us rely on close friends, homeschooling support groups, and Internet communities. These companions are important and must be nurtured and cherished.

In addition, though, it helps to refresh your philosophy of education and parenting. How do you renew your faith that you and your children will know what to do when you face challenges and obstacles to a harmonious home education?

A Gracious Space is a non-sectarian compilation of fifty essays about homeschooling and family life designed to encourage you, the homeschooling parent even on your worst day. Read an entry with your morning coffee or tea to help you focus on the principles and ideals that undergird your homeschool.

Essay titles include

  • It All Adds Up!
  • Content, not Conventions
  • Know Your Kids as They Are
  • Less is More, Really!
  • It’s the Relationship, Sweetheart
  • Prophecies of Doom
  • In Defense of the Disillusioned
  • How You Say it Matters
  • To Plan or Not Plan Your Lesson Plans
  • When Your Kids are Unhappy, What Can You Do?

This collection of essays currently comes in two formats: PDF and ePub (for iBooks). You will receive both of these formats when you order.

Purchase Price: $9.95

Order Today!

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Happy Birthday, Brian Jacques!

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

RedwallIt’s Brian Jacques’ birthday today (June 15, 1939), and to celebrate, we’re making a special offer! The Arrow for his novel, Redwall, is:

HALF PRICE through Monday at Midnight! ($4.95) OFFER HAS EXPIRED

Redwall tells the epic tale of the animals of Redwall Abbey, who valiantly defend their home from the attacks of a one-eyed rat and his fearsome army. The story is a moving tale of the courage of the small and weak against the strong. Like the other 21 books in the series, Redwall contains wonderful descriptions of food, as well as delightful accents particular to each type of creature in the stories.

Although now acclaimed as one of the greatest children’s authors in the world, drawing comparisons to Kenneth Grahame’s Wind in the Willows and Richard Adams’s Watership Down, Brian Jacques’ first attempt at writing was not nearly so successful.

At ten years old, for an assignment at his school in Liverpool, England, Brian Jacques wrote a short story about a bird that cleaned a crocodile’s teeth. His teacher refused to believe that a ten-year-old could write so well and ordered Jacques to say that he had copied the story. When Jacques refused, he was caned. So it was that Brian Jacques first realized his talent for writing.

Before pursuing writing full-time, Brian Jacques worked as a merchant seaman, a fireman, a long-distance truck driver, a bus driver, a boxer, a bobby (British policeman), a postmaster, and a stand-up comic.

When Jacques began to write Redwall, his first audience was the children at the Royal Wavertree School for the Blind in Liverpool. Because he was writing to a blind audience, he attempted to make his writing as descriptive as possible so that the children could picture the events in their imagination.

In fact, Brian Jacques was only published when a former English teacher submitted Jacques’ story to a publisher without telling Jacques. The publishers loved the book and immediately drew up a contract for five more books. Ever since, the Redwall stories have been delighting children and adults all around the globe.

So, don’t miss out—celebrate Brian Jacques’ birthday and take advantage of this special Arrow offer!

Also, if you’d like to buy a copy of the novel, it’s available through Amazon: Redwall (affiliate link).

The Arrow is a monthly digital product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. It’s geared toward children ages 8-11 and is an indispensable tool for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

For Email Marketing you can trust