Continuing our series of interviews with our marvelous writing instructors, here’s the latest installment: an interview with Sarah Holden!
Sarah had a magical childhood in Vermont, the fairy dust of which still informs much of her life. Now she lives in a home full of books with a view of the Rocky Mountains. She spent a year at Smith College and then transferred to The Juilliard School where she earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Oboe Performance. While in New York, she took poetry classes at Columbia and wrote and wrote and wrote amidst all the practicing and performing. She has been teaching in one form or another since she can remember: playing “school” as a child, private oboe lessons, Parent and Child music and art classes, elementary and middle schools in inner-NYC, classes to help public school teachers add the arts to their classrooms, Meet-the-Instrument assemblies, a decade of homeschooling her own children, homeschool co-op classes, and now online for Brave Writer.
What kind of a writer were you in high school?
I’ve always loved words. They feel like magic to me and I’ve enjoyed them from a place of reading, writing, and informal debating for as long as I can remember. Writing is a creative and emotional outlet in my life. I started journaling avidly at age 8 (yes, I still have those journals…and, no, you may not peek at them until I’m in my grave). I am very grateful that words and writing have always allowed me to process the good and bad parts of my days. I find that my thoughts are more free and forthcoming when I write them down and that the act of writing gives my oft-cluttered mind a means of organization. Of note, writing was especially helpful in the turbulent teen years when I felt lots of angst and overwhelm. When my mom and I had tense moments, I poured out my anger and confusion to her in letters. I’m sure these were difficult to read, but the act of writing those feelings down and getting them out of me was cathartic and lightening. I think they were helpful to my mom in finding a way to understand where I was coming from, too.
Continuing our series of interviews with our marvelous writing instructors, here’s the latest installment: an interview with the wonderful Jen Holman!
Jen Holman has been teaching for Brave Writer since 2015 after being a long time user of Brave Writer products in her own homeschool. Jen’s foundation for teaching lies in her experience working with university students on essays for their classes. Teaching literary analysis and essay writing for Brave Writer is a perfect combination of academic and personal interests. Her husband’s work has allowed their family to travel extensively in the last few years, and Jen has taught her classes from around the world, on trains, in airports. This past year they settled down in Canada to live near their families.
What kind of a writer were you in high school?
I wish I could say that this period produced some of my most sophisticated writing. INSTEAD I will say that I wrote everyday, voraciously! There was no texting in that day, or even email. My friends and I exchanged what we called “notes.” These varied between a few lines and a page, sometimes two, or three, scribbled on loose leaf paper while on buses, study hall, in between classes. They outlined the days of our lives at the time. There was compelling drama! Irony! Vivid detail! (Everything your creative writing teacher wants you to practice wink).
Fill out the application linked below (it’s time sensitive, so be sure to mark your calendars!).
We’ll invite qualified candidates to an interview and then to our two-week training (mandatory).
We’ll select our new coaches from the pool of candidates who complete the training successfully.
Qualified writing coaches who complete the training will be invited to teach for Brave Writer as the need arises over the course of the next 12-18 months. We expect to expand our offerings.
If you or a friend (or a spouse!) would like to supplement the family income and have writing and homeschooling skills, consider working with us! Brave Writer coaches work part-time from home. Hours and scheduling are flexible. Pay is based on class type.
Our requirements are straightforward and critical to our success.
1. Homeschool Experience
You must have homeschooled your kids or have been homeschooled yourself for at least 3 years.
Publishing credits in any of the following venues are necessary:
an active blog with a readership
a community newsletter (homeschooling, religious community, affinity group, etc.)
letters to the editor or editorials
you tell us! (There are lots of ways to be published today.)
3. Online presence
You need to have a warm, engaging online presence that is evident from online conversations you link for us to read. Be sure that you send links to public conversations. We can’t read your private Facebook or Instagram accounts. We need to be able to see how you relate online because that’s what teaching for Brave Writer is all about!
4. Excellent writing skills
We’re looking for people who write with clarity and ease using accurate grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
You need to be a creative person who can problem-solve and foster imaginative solutions to writing dilemmas. We’ll train you in our method, but it helps if you already have a knack for revision, or expanding writing content.
6. Knowledge of academic writing forms and literature
Not required, but helpful.
In addition to needing instructors for our core classes for children ages 8-13, we also have a need for instructors who can teach high school writing forms—college prep writing.
Who wouldn’t want to work with this great team?
Follow these submission directions
Please use this form to apply (emails will NOT be accepted). The form will be open for a 48-hour window on April 23-24, 2018. The form will close at midnight EDT on April 24. This gives you time to update your resumé and prepare your writing sample before you apply.
You will share this information:
name, phone number, email address, and where you currently live
degrees (high school, college, graduate school – whatever you have)
familiarity with Brave Writer products
information about you and why you’d like to work for Brave Writer
You also must attach:
a writing sample that showcases your writing voice (700-800 words)
your resumé (please include any experience teaching writing)
We will conduct interviews via webcast software and invite select candidates to complete our writing instructor training (conducted online asynchronously, no specific daily login time): July 9 – 20 of 2018. The training is required of all qualifying candidates: no exceptions. There is no invitation to work for Brave Writer until completion of training.
Even if you are not invited to teach with us, the online training is valuable to your own homeschool and any co-op community where you might teach.
Once you’ve submitted your application, you will receive an email receipt as confirmation. We will contact you by May 7 to thank you for your application or to ask you to continue in the process. Select interviews will be offered by the end of May.
Invitations to our Brave Writer writing coach training will be extended before June 30, 2018, after we complete the interview process.
The training will be held online July 9 – 20 of 2018.
It is mandatory for anyone who wants to work for us.
Have questions? Watch this video on YouTube!
This video was created for our last round of hiring, but is still full of helpful information. Note that the dates mentioned don’t correspond to this hiring call, and that our class that was called Kidswrite Basic is now called The Writer’s Jungle Online.
All other employment related questions must be directed to Paula Horton: email@example.com
Continuing our series of interviews with our fabulous writing instructors, here’s the latest installment: an interview with the incredible Karen O’Connor!
Karen O’Connoris a published author, mentor, and speaker who loves to work with Brave Writer students in her Write For Fun classes. She is also Julie’s mom! Watching young people share their thoughts and ideas and creativity keeps her smiling. And when she isn’t teaching she’s either hiking or line dancing or playing choo-choo train with her great-grandson Massey.
What kind of a writer were you in high school? Writing was always my best subject. I worked on our high school newspaper.
You’re a new addition to the crayon box. What color would you be and why?
I’d be mint green (unless someone beat me to it). I wore a mint green and lace dress to my senior prom and since then that color has been my favorite.
Continuing our series of interviews with our fabulous writing instructors, here’s the latest installment: an interview with the wonderful Samantha Burtner!
Samantha was homeschooled K-12 and even took several Brave Writer classes back in its early years! She holds a degree in Journalism from Patrick Henry College and has written for local newspapers, city magazines, online news sources, blogs, and even a communications shop at a think-tank in Washington, D.C. Now Samantha enjoys channeling her love of language and writing in the Brave Writer classroom teaching Expository Essay, Essay Prep, and The Scoop: The Art of Journalism. Last, but not least, she was recently sorted into Hufflepuff and isn’t sure how she feels about that.
What kind of a writer were you in high school?
A melodramatic one. My journals are brimming with outlandish tales, embarrassing moments, and comments or gestures blown completely out of proportion. I blush when I re-read them, but I can also see that the pages are filled with experimentation and risk-taking! I could try out new ideas or words or phrases and trust that my journal would be discrete and non-judgemental. As Virginia Woolf puts it: “The habit of writing thus for my own eye only is good practice. It loosens the ligaments. Never mind the misses and the stumbles.”
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