Archive for the ‘Online Classes’ Category

Shakespeare Family Workshop

Shakespeare Family Workshop

Brave Writer mom Kara (and her girls Neve, 10, and Nora, 8) participated in our Shakespeare Family Workshop online class and this is what she had to say about it:

This has been such a wonderful five weeks! We can’t believe how fast it has gone! We started out with absolutely no clue to what Shakespeare is all about. My one daughter said she thought it was about romance and kissing. The other said she thought it was for grown ups and all sad. I only had seen A Midsummer’s Night Dream at a local college and thought it was hard to understand.

Now it’s hard to tell all the ways we think of Shakespeare now. We know that he wrote three main genre’s of plays. We learned so much from each type and how they brought different emotions to the fore. We also learned how he wrote many sonnets and what a sonnet even is.

We thoroughly enjoyed learning about the time period! We learned so much about the 1600’s and the Elizabethan era. I think that was one of our favorite parts, going back in time. We really started to pick up on and start to understand the meaning of their language. It made us think how much the plays were influenced by who was ruling at the time too. We liked learning about the history of England and all their rulers. I really enjoyed Shakespeare’s histories more than I thought I would have. All of us loved watching the Much Ado About Nothing movie after studying it all week.

The girls favorite side activity was definitely making the homemade berry ink. They still want to make more and write like they used to. It made everything come alive for them.

Berry Ink - Shakespeare Family Workshop
Berry Ink: 1/2 cup berries (push them through a strainer for pulp-free juice).
Add 1/2 teaspoon of vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Mix well.

Nora said she really enjoyed learning how Shakespeare wrote in iambic pentameter and 14 lines in his sonnets. She also really liked seeing Richard III bones, it was real! Never liked how he used antithesis and now is picking up on that in a lot of other writing. She also liked learning how there were many copies of the plays such as the messy one’s all the way down to the First Folio. I liked seeing how the soliloquies let you see the character’s inner most thoughts. Like I said we could go on all night!

The only challenging part was that it did take a long time to read and really get into each week. I don’t know if I would call it challenging, but it did take time and effort for sure. We put off other history and language arts like you had recommended or I don’t think we would have gotten the full benefit of the class. It was well worth it though!

I asked the girls for any improvements and Nora said she would like the class to go on for another week!! When we went to the library today she got a book on Twelfth Night all on her own! I don’t think she’s ready to let go of Shakespeare anytime soon! I think we may need to go to a live performance soon!

We enjoyed every week of this class! We learned more than we could have imagined! I liked how the class could be adapted to all ages! I loved seeing my girls understand and enjoy Shakespeare!! Thank you so much!!!

Kara, Neve, and Nora

Shakespeare Family Workshop

Spring 2017 Class Registration is OPEN

Brave Writer 2017 Spring Class Registration is OPEN

Registration is OPEN for 2017 Spring Classes

Don’t wait! Brave Writer classes fill quickly!

Brave Writer online writing classes are so popular! We had a record number of students this fall. For spring, we have something for everyone. Click here for the Class Schedule at a glance.

Registration How To

  1. Log in and use your Parent Username and Password (click the reset if you have forgotten either—your email address will not log you in)
  2. Add your children after you’ve selected the class. ALL classes require both a parent and child to be associated with them, even if the parent is the primary student or the child is the primary student.
  3. If you are paying by charter school, check the “charter school payment option” and then put the name of the charter school in the comment box.
  4. Paypal and credit cards are both accepted for payment. Paypal issues its own receipts which will come separately in your email account associated with the payment.
  5. You are registered for the class when you have received an email receipt of your registration back from Brave Writer.


“My children and I are currently taking the Kidswrite Basic class with Brave Writer. It has been helpful to be guided through how to teach writing and I have a lot more confidence. I have homeschooled for over 10 years and writing has been the hardest subject for me to teach. They say to spend your money on your weakest area and that is what I did and feel it was well worth the investment.” ~Betsy Koster

2017 Spring Writing Class Schedule!

Brave Writer's 2017 Spring Class Schedule
2017 Spring Semester Online Classes
and a Special Announcement!

What a fall! Thank you for your enthusiasm for what we do. We SOLD OUT of all our fall semester online writing classes by November 1st! As a result, we’ve been scrambling to ensure we offer enough sessions in our spring semester (January – June 2017). We’ve got three brand new classes! And we’ve also ADDED sessions to our most popular classes.

2017 Spring Semester Writing Class Schedule!

Spring Semester begins in January and runs through June, 2017.

Check out our THREE brand new classes!

The Scoop: The Art of Journalism, taught by the lovely Samantha Burtner!

Penning the Past and Comic Strip Capers, coached by the fabulous Melissa Wiley!

Yes, you heard that right. Popular children’s author, Melissa Wiley, is joining the Brave Writer team!
Melissa Wiley
Melissa, children’s author of the prequels to the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, The Prairie Thief, and Inchy and Rolly series, is offering her talents to the Brave Writer family. Her two classes are likely to fill swiftly (what an opportunity to learn from a seasoned pro who also homeschools her six kids!) so set your alarms and sign up as soon as we open registration.

We’ve got an incredible line-up of classes with outstanding writing coaches leading them. I am so proud of our team and what we offer to homeschooling families. Join the more than 20,000 students who’ve taken our online classes.

Transform the writing life in your home by joining one of our classes in 2017. You won’t regret it!

Learn how our writing class program works here.

If you have any questions about classes, please contact my team at One of us will get back to you with answers to help you make the decision that is right for your family and students.

Mark your calendars!

Registration for spring semester classes
opens Monday, December 5th! (at 12:00 PM EST)

Brave Writer 2017 Spring Class Schedule

Student Spotlight: Glory


Brave Writer instructor, Susanne Barrett, writes:

In the Groovy Grammar Workshop, we spend the first week collecting words that we especially appreciate. Some of these words can be ordinary objects and actions; other words may sound cool when we say them. Some words may even make our mouths water with anticipation!

After doing several fun activities with the words we’ve collected, we offer an optional activity of creating a Word Cloud. Word Clouds are cool collections of words arranged creatively. Our students often enjoy creating their Word Clouds using their newly-collected words and word combinations.

While some of our Groovy Grammar students use a terrific website to create their Word Clouds, Glory, age 13, made up her own Word Cloud using words that she collected in a wonderfully creative way (see above)!

Groovy Grammar Workshop

Brave Writer and the College Admission Essay

College Admission Essay
Brave Writer Instructor and Minister of Magic, Nancy Graham writes:

I’ve been teaching Brave Writer’s College Admission Essay class for three years now and I love watching the essays come into focus. Students often start with no ideas or a vague sense of the story they want to tell about themselves, and they leave with a piece that traces a time in their life when they were transformed in some way. What seems at first like a purely functional piece of prose—“Let me into your college!”—becomes a moving document of insight and self-reflection. Whether the writer has undertaken her education at home or in a school, this essay is an opportunity to reflect on her life so far—what she values and what she has learned.

Every couple of months we’ll feature an essay, beginning with Cassie’s meditation on how a county fair became a family heirloom. Cassie took our Fall 2014 College Admissions Essay class.

County Fair Heirlooms

By Cassie W.
Knox College, class of 2019

Stepping into the cinder block clubhouse near the first gate of the Prince William County Fair, I’m greeted with both a wave of nostalgia and friendly hellos. The old ladies—dressed in sweatpants and gingham aprons—step out from behind plastic folding tables heavy with aluminum warming dishes full of mashed potatoes, gravy, chicken, and lima beans. They smile at me and squeeze my arm and tell me how much I’ve grown up since last year, and I smile and say that it’s good to see them and I’m glad to be back. It’s been like this for as long as I can remember.

This year, my green volunteer t-shirt is sticking to my back, and my bangs are plastered to my forehead. I’ve been working in the Home Arts building for the past five hours—a tin-roofed barn where the exhibitions are held. I fill out paperwork, help with judging, and hang the exhibits—amateur photos of babies and animals, now decorated with blue, red, and white ribbons that flutter in the breeze of electric fans. Although it’s hard, hot, and tedious, I take more pride in my job than in any other work.

I grab a paper plate from the stack on the table and pile it with the creamy mashed potatoes, dousing the miniature potato mountain with gravy, and dipping the spoon into the mess of soft lima beans and melted butter for an extra helping.

Sure, I love the cotton candy, soft-serve ice cream and funnel cake of the carnival as much as anyone, but it’s the homemade food cooked up by the remaining members of the Ladies’ Auxiliary Fair Club that I love best. It’s the same sort of food my grandmother would make for me as a kid, which makes sense, seeing as she used to cook in the clubhouse kitchens. She worked hard for the fair for most of her life, like my grandfather, who helped found the fair over sixty years ago when he came back from World War II. I never knew my grandfather, but I have childhood memories of my grandma walking me around the fairground, smiling and waving at me while I rode the merry-go-round or the bumper cars, scolding me when I got lost in the crowd.

Grandma died the spring I turned fourteen, but for this week in August, when I spend every day at the fair, her legacy—and that of my grandfather—is palpable. The fair has always been deeply woven into the history of my mother’s side of the family, and we joke that the clubhouse is like more like Thanksgiving in August.

Every day, I walk the midway. I’m usually alone. There’s no one to scold me when I get lost in the crowd, so I let myself get lost: I ride the rides, the bare backs of my legs sticking to the vinyl seats. I scratch the oily heads of sheep and let cows lick my hands, pose proudly for pictures by my award-winning cookies or decorated potatoes, eat ice cream, and watch acrobats perform in the little circus ring behind the chicken barn. I strut at the fair, and my personality shifts: I am proud of every aspect of the place. A deep pride in my family, yes, but also a personal pride. I feel like the fair is mine, and I always have. It is something that has been handed down to me, like a gift.

I don’t have many heirlooms from my my maternal grandparents—my grandmother’s hand-stitched quilt, a set of china plates. I will treasure these things. But I also have the fair, the community, and the memories of humid summers, oily sunscreen, and my grandmother’s wrinkled hands that come with it.

Brave Writer’s 10 Tips for Writing Your College Essay