Archive for the ‘Arrow’ Category

Book Reveal Q&A

Brave Writer Book Reveal

It’s our biggest event of the year: The Brave Writer Book Reveal!

What is it? Glad you asked!

Let’s do a little Q&A!

What is the Brave Writer Book Reveal?

It’s a little confetti and a lot of books! Over 30 new titles for 2022-2023!

Each year the Brave Writer team selects new book titles for our Mechanics and Literature programs.

Be the first to ooh and ahh over them by joining us live!

Click the links to register for the Zoom webinars.

Or watch live on Facebook.

What do the Mechanics and Literature programs teach?

The Brave Writer Mechanics and Literature programs teach:

  • grammar
  • punctuation
  • spelling
  • literary devices
  • literary analysis (high school levels)
  • Book Club Party ideas

We use copywork, three types of dictation, and Big Juicy Conversations to help your children have epiphanies about language as they learn to write.

The programs cover the following age groups:

  • NEW! Quill (ages 5-7)
  • Dart (ages 8-10)
  • Arrow (ages 11-12)
  • Boomerang (ages 13-14)
  • Slingshot (age 15-18)

Is training available?

Each level comes with Guidelines that explain and supply:

  • how to teach copywork
  • how to teach various forms of dictation to grow your child’s writing and editing skills 
  • how to engage your children in natural conversations about literature
  • sample routines (aka schedules)
  • a skills tracker
  • a weekly planning tool
  • tips for implementation

In addition, the Brave Learner Home community provides training and support for all Brave Writer products, classes and parenting/education questions.

  • Membership is free for a lifetime when you purchase a Brave Writer bundle or a year-long Mechanics and Literature program in June—find details on the Special Offers page in the Brave Writer store.)

Can I use one level for more than one child?

Yes. Each product is a non-consumable PDF. Print as many copies as you need for your family. The various levels are easy to adapt for family-style learning, too. One program—many children.

Adaptations are offered in the Guidelines that come with your program.

One bundle purchase covers your language arts, English, and writing needs for many children!

Is Brave Writer a complete writing and language arts program?

Yes. When you buy a bundle, you will have the three essential components of a complete writing and language arts program. Learn more. Select the bundle that’s right for your family.

Does Brave Writer teach academic writing?

Yes. Our program begins with writing voice and developmentally appropriate writing assignments. Children grow their academic writing skills through these carefully tailored writing projects, which cover all common academic forms and formats, in preparation for college.

Does my child need to take Brave Writer Online classes in addition to using the curricula? 

While Brave Writer classes offer a valuable experience for both parents and students, they are not required to have a complete language arts experience with Brave Writer.

Classes offer extra support and accountability that help many parents get over the hurdle of teaching writing.

If you find that you want to make time to teach writing, but never get around to it, a class will ensure that you keep that commitment to yourself and your kids. It’s the “hand-holding” approach to becoming your child’s best writing coach.

We recommend students take occasional classes for the sheer pleasure of it, or to gain experience meeting deadlines, or to enjoy receiving support and feedback from a trained writing coach.

Have more questions?

Want to know more about Brave Writer or the Book Reveals? Contact us at

Brave Writer Book Reveal

Mechanics & Literature: May 2022

Brave Writer

In this month’s Dart, Arrow, Boomerang, and Slingshot your family will encounter stories of adventure, enchantment, adversity, and discovery. The pages of these stories will take you to:

  • an isolated island,
  • an enchanted forest,
  • a city fighting for survival in the midst of a pandemic,
  • and a small town where big learning unfolds.

Buckle your seatbelts as you explore writing, mechanics, and literary devices this month—these books will take you on some wild rides!

[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]

Brave Writer Dart
Ages 8-10

Nim’s Island (Wendy Orr)

A girl. An iguana. An island. And e-mail. Meet Nim–a modern-day Robinson Crusoe! She can chop down bananas with a machete, climb tall palm trees, and start a fire with a piece of glass. So she’s not afraid when her scientist dad sails off to study plankton for three days, leaving her alone on their island. Besides, it’s not as if no one’s looking after her–she’s got a sea lion to mother her and an iguana for comic relief. She also has an interesting new e-mail pal. But when her father’s cell-phone calls stop coming and disaster seems near, Nim has to be stronger and braver than she’s ever been before.

And she’ll need all her friends to help her.

Purchase the book.

Get the Dart.

Brave Writer Arrow
Ages 11-12

Midsummer’s Mayhem (Rajani LaRocca)

Can Mimi undo the mayhem caused by her baking in this contemporary fantasy retelling of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream?

Eleven-year-old Mimi Mackson comes from a big Indian American family: Dad’s a renowned food writer, Mom’s a successful businesswoman, and her three older siblings all have their own respective accomplishments. It’s easy to feel invisible in such an impressive family, but Mimi’s dream of proving she’s not the least talented member of her family seems possible when she discovers a contest at the new bakery in town. Plus, it’ll start her on the path to becoming a celebrity chef like her culinary idol, Puffy Fay.

But when Mimi’s dad returns from a business trip, he’s mysteriously lost his highly honed sense of taste. Without his help, Mimi will never be able to bake something impressive enough to propel her to gastronomic fame.

Drawn into the woods behind her house by a strangely familiar song, Mimi meets Vik, a boy who brings her to parts of the forest she’s never seen. Who knew there were banyan trees and wild boars in Massachusetts? Together they discover exotic ingredients and bake them into delectable and enchanting treats.

But as her dad acts stranger every day, and her siblings’ romantic entanglements cause trouble in their town, Mimi begins to wonder whether the ingredients she and Vik found are somehow the cause of it all. She needs to use her skills, deductive and epicurean, to uncover what’s happening. In the process, she learns that in life, as in baking, not everything is sweet.

Purchase the book.

Get the Arrow.

Brave Writer Boomerang
Ages 13-14

Fever 1793 (Laurie Halse Anderson)

During the summer of 1793, Mattie Cook lives above the family coffee shop with her widowed mother and grandfather. Mattie spends her days avoiding chores and making plans to turn the family business into the finest Philadelphia has ever seen. But then the fever breaks out.

Disease sweeps the streets, destroying everything in its path and turning Mattie’s world upside down. At her feverish mother’s insistence, Mattie flees the city with her grandfather. But she soon discovers that the sickness is everywhere, and Mattie must learn quickly how to survive in a city turned frantic with disease.

Purchase the book.

Get the Boomerang.

Brave Writer Slingshot
Ages 15-18

Swing (Kwame Alexander with Mary Rand Hess)

Best friends Noah and Walt are far from popular, but Walt is convinced junior year is their year, and he has a plan that includes wooing the girls of their dreams and becoming amazing athletes. Never mind he and Noah failed to make their baseball team yet again, and Noah’s crush since third grade, Sam, has him firmly in the friend zone. While Walt focuses on his program of jazz, podcasts, batting cages, and a “Hug Life” mentality, Noah feels stuck in status quo … until he stumbles on a stash of old love letters. Each one contains words Noah’s always wanted to say to Sam, and he begins secretly creating artwork using the lines that speak his heart. But when his art becomes public, Noah has a decision to make: continue his life in the dugout and possibly lose the girl forever, or take a swing and finally speak out.

At the same time, American flags are being left around town. While some think it’s a harmless prank and others see it as a form of protest, Noah can’t shake the feeling something bigger is happening to his community. Especially after he witnesses events that hint divides and prejudices run deeper than he realized.

As the personal and social tensions increase around them, Noah and Walt must decide what is really important when it comes to love, friendship, sacrifice, and fate.

Purchase the book.

Get the Slingshot.

Brave Writer

Get Ready: 2022-2023 Book Reveal!

Brave Writer Book Reveal

Book Reveal Dates & New Product (ages 5-8) Alert!

It’s almost that time of year when our families get a little nutty enthusiastic.

They’re excited for good reason! 

Each June, I announce the newly selected book titles for the coming academic year for our mechanics and literature programs Dart, Arrow, Boomerang, and Slingshot.

We’ll also introduce Quill for ages 5-8!

These programs are designed to teach your kids the mechanics of writing through living literature!

The big reveal is exciting because these are:

  • books your family will read aloud together and treasure all year 
  • books that naturally teach writing mechanics and introduce literary elements

Here at Brave Writer, we take the selection of these book titles Very Seriously!

All year, we read, discuss, and delight in the year’s latest fiction as well as relishing the classics.

  • We aim for diversity of authorship and protagonists.
  • We incorporate a variety of genres: fantasy to the classics.
  • We carefully orchestrate the sequence of the books.
  • We balance book length against the holiday demands of a given month.
  • We alternate moving, poignant books with silly, lighthearted books.
  • We launch the year with a sure-fire winner and end with a warmhearted one.

By the time we’ve settled on a book list, we’re chomping at the bit to share it with you!
You can expect a lively, inspired reading journey.

Stay tuned for info about the live 2022–2023 reveal! It’s always a blast!

In the meantime…

Join us LIVE!

Click the links to register for the Zoom webinars.

Note: By registering you’re agreeing to receive occasional Brave Writer updates. You can set preferences or unsubscribe at any time. Please read our Privacy Policy for more information.

Or watch live on Facebook.

Get ready for an incredible journey through literature in 2022-2023!

The Book Reveals are free to attend and we highly recommend watching with your children! Special snacks, yes! Confetti, of course!

See you then!

Brave Writer Book Reveal

Mechanics & Literature: April 2022

Brave Writer

This month’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang have something for everyone!

Dart-aged kids will discover what it’s like to say goodbye to a beloved homeland and family before moving to another country. Older history buffs can time travel to Martha’s Vineyard in 1805 and California during World War II.

Discover amazing new places as you explore writing, mechanics, and literary devices.

[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]

Brave Writer Dart
Dart (ages 8-10)

The Turtle of Oman by Naomi Shihab Nye

Aref does not want to leave Oman. He does not want to leave his elementary school, his friends, or his beloved grandfather, Sidi. He does not want to live in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where his parents will go to graduate school. His mother is desperate for him to pack his suitcase—but he refuses. Finally, she calls Sidi for help. But rather than pack, Aref and Sidi go on a series of adventures. They visit the camp of a thousand stars deep in the desert, they sleep on Sidi’s roof, they fish in the Gulf of Oman and dream about going to India, they travel to the nature reserve to watch the sea turtles. At each stop, Sidi finds a small stone that he later slips into Aref’s suitcase—mementos of home.

This accessible, exquisite novel shines with gentle humor and explores themes of moving, family, nature, and immigration. Naomi Shihab Nye has created what Kirkus called “a warm and humorous peek at the profound and mundane details of moving from one country to another—a perfect pick for kids on the move.” Features black-and-white spot art and decorations by Betsy Peterschmidt.

Purchase the novel.

Get the Dart.

Brave Writer Arrow
Arrow (ages 11-12)

Show Me a Sign by Ann Clare LeZotte

Mary Lambert has always felt safe and protected on her beloved island of Martha’s Vineyard. Her great-great-grandfather was an early English settler and the first deaf islander. Now, over a hundred years later, many people there — including Mary — are deaf, and nearly everyone can communicate in sign language. Mary has never felt isolated. She is proud of her lineage. But recent events have delivered winds of change. Mary’s brother died, leaving her family shattered. Tensions over land disputes are mounting between English settlers and the Wampanoag people. And a cunning young scientist has arrived, hoping to discover the origin of the island’s prevalent deafness. His maniacal drive to find answers soon renders Mary a “live specimen” in a cruel experiment. Her struggle to save herself is at the core of this penetrating and poignant novel that probes our perceptions of ability and disability. It will make you forever question your own ideas about what is normal.

Purchase the book.

Get the Arrow.

Brave Writer Boomerang
Boomerang (13-14)

Jazz Owls: A Novel of the Zoot Suit Riots by Margarita Engle

Thousands of young Navy sailors are pouring into Los Angeles on their way to the front lines of World War II. They are teenagers, scared, longing to feel alive before they have to face the horrors of battle. Hot jazz music spiced with cool salsa rhythms beckons them to dance with the local Mexican American girls, who jitterbug all night before working all day in the canneries. Proud to do their part for the war effort, these Jazz Owl girls are happy to dance with the sailors—until the blazing summer night when racial violence leads to murder.

Suddenly the young white sailors are attacking the girls’ brothers and boyfriends. The cool, loose zoot suits they wear are supposedly the reason for the violence—when in reality the boys are viciously beaten and arrested simply because of the color of their skin.

In soaring images and searing poems, this is the breathtaking story of what became known as the Zoot Suit Riots.

Purchase the book.

Get the Boomerang.

Brave Writer

Mechanics & Literature: March 2022

Brave Writer

In this month’s Dart, Arrow, Boomerang, and Slingshot, our protagonists face daunting challenges. These characters are giving everything they’ve got! Whether it’s:

  • solving a crime,
  • helping heal a friend,
  • playing the game of their lives,
  • or foiling an evil plan,

You’ll feel like you’re right there beside them as you explore writing, mechanics, and literary devices with your family.

[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]

Brave Writer Dart
Dart (ages 8-10)

Julieta and the Diamond Enigma (Luisana Duarte Armendáriz)

Nine-year-old Julieta is finally about to put a purple pin in her family’s world traveling map! She’s off to Paris to help her art-handler dad collect pieces for a new exhibit at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Sadly, they must leave Julieta’s very pregnant mother behind, but they’re sure they’ll be back before the baby is born. Julieta sees the best of Paris: the Eiffel Tower, the Sacré-Coeur, and plenty of great art. But things go awry when she and Dad walk in on a thief stealing the Louvre’s most prized piece–a priceless cursed diamond with a shady history. When Julieta runs for help, she accidentally frees the thief instead! Now Dad’s job is in danger and he’s become a suspect. Can Julieta determine who the thief really is before it’s too late?

Purchase the book.

Get the Dart.

Brave Writer Arrow
Arrow (ages 11-12)

The Vanderbeekers and the Hidden Garden (Karina Yan Glaser)

While Isa is off at sleepaway orchestra camp, Jessie, Oliver, Hyacinth, and Laney are stuck at home in the brownstone with nothing to do but get on one another’s nerves. But when catastrophe strikes their beloved upstairs neighbor, their sleepy summer transforms in an instant as the Vanderbeeker children band together to do what they do best: make a plan. They will create the most magical healing garden in all of Harlem. In this companion to The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street, experience the warmth of a family and their community as they work together to bring a little more beauty and kindness to the world, one thwarted plan at a time.

Purchase the book.

Get the Arrow.

Brave Writer Boomerang
Boomerang (ages 13-14)

Dragon Hoops (Gene Luen Yang)

Gene understands stories―comic book stories, in particular. Big action. Bigger thrills. And the hero always wins.

But Gene doesn’t get sports. As a kid, his friends called him “Stick” and every basketball game he played ended in pain. He lost interest in basketball long ago, but at the high school where he now teaches, it’s all anyone can talk about. The men’s varsity team, the Dragons, is having a phenomenal season that’s been decades in the making. Each victory brings them closer to their ultimate goal: the California State Championships.

Once Gene gets to know these young all-stars, he realizes that their story is just as thrilling as anything he’s seen on a comic book page. He knows he has to follow this epic to its end. What he doesn’t know yet is that this season is not only going to change the Dragons’ lives but his own life as well.

Purchase the book.

Get the Boomerang.

Brave Writer Slingshot
Slingshot (ages 15-18)

The Fellowship of the Ring: Being the First Part of the Lord of the Rings (J.R.R. Tolkien)

In ancient times the Rings of Power were crafted by the Elven-smiths, and Sauron, the Dark Lord, forged the One Ring, filling it with his own power so that he could rule all others. But the One Ring was taken from him, and though he sought it throughout Middle-earth, it remained lost to him. After many ages, it fell into the hands of Bilbo Baggins, as told in The Hobbit.

In a sleepy village in the Shire, young Frodo Baggins finds himself faced with an immense task, as his elderly cousin Bilbo entrusts the ring to his care. Frodo must leave his home and make a perilous journey across Middle-earth to the Cracks of Doom, there to destroy the Ring and foil the Dark Lord in his evil purpose.

Purchase the book.

Get the Slingshot.

Brave Writer