I never get tired of hearing how Brave Writer students fare in college composition classes. Just yesterday, I ran into one of my local friends. I helped her son write his college admissions essay. He also took Kidswrite Basic back in junior high when I taught it. This is not a kid who I remember for his writing. He struck me as a typical boy writer who simply needed some coaxing to discover that the thoughts in his head deserved to be recorded in writing. He is more than able to tell a good story about himself and his experiences given the right set of questions and time to develop his thoughts. In working with him on the admissions essay, it was very enjoyable for me to see him develop insight into his experiences (more than merely reporting them).
So when I ran into his mom, she stopped me to say, “Dan got his first essay back in English Comp 101 at Miami of Ohio.”
“Oh?” I said. “How’d he do?” I expected her to tell me he had done well, earning an A or B (figuring she wouldn’t stop me to tell me he failed).
“Well, he not only got an A on his paper, the professor asked him to sign a permissions notice so that the department could publish his essay in the English department journal as an example of what a well-written essay should look like for incoming freshmen.”
“Nuh-uh,” I replied articulately.
“Yuh-huh,” she countered. And we both cracked up. Dan – her son, not her naturally-gifted writing daughters.
There’s something about those opening hooks, the ease with which Brave Writer kids learn to express themselves combined with their confidence in applying their writing voices to academic formats. Their writing wins over their professors. It keeps happening.
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