What parents are saying about Pages:
“Thank you for making class so enjoyable and personal. My daughter’s writing has really expanded since being in classes with you.”
“I really appreciate you going through the different areas of reading and writing in class as opposed to having him do it all on his own at home. It sets a good example of what to do (i.e. what to look for and pay close attention to as he reads) and how to do it (i.e. organize his thoughts and get ready to write into paragraphs).”
I’ve been overseeing and teaching Pages online literature + writing workshops for two years now.
I’ve homeschooled for over 15 years plus taught in the classroom along the journey. I’ve gone to Homeschool Vendor fairs as a parent and a teacher. And I talk to many parents and teachers. I often get asked what makes our curriculum or our classes different. I’m never sure where to start. But a word that often comes to mind is relationship.
This word makes a difference. I can see this difference when we’re at conference and a parent comes to our booth. Or I get a phone call, or a parent sends in an email with a question. Parents don’t seem to worry as much about finding a child’s history program or science materials. Parents even seem to worry less about pairing math. But reading, and even more so writing, is a whole different story. Reading and writing are essential to understand the world, to communicate with people, understand culture and are vital to learning and exploring all the other subjects. When parents contact Blackbird & Company, they tend to share stories of their triumphs and struggles with reading and writing. For someone who has children who learn differently, or are simply not motivated to read or write well, the work of reading and writing can lead to worry, frustration, sadness, and many a day in tears. I was one of those moms for many years until I discovered Blackbird & Company Curriculum and my very own community of support.
Pages classes are, first and foremost, a Community of Support. We take a great piece of literature and walk students through it for 5 weeks using the curriculum as guide. We break up the reading each week and dive into Character Traits, Setting, Plot, Vocabulary, Plot Questions and Discussion. We end each week with a personal writing prompt that ties into the book. The teacher becomes your student’s editor, teaching all the form needed to become a successful writer while, at the same time, protecting and valuing the student’s great ideas. The time and support we give each student are something I have never seen before in other classes. We communicate with both the parent and student regularly forming a strong relationship based on mutual respect. Both parents and students share their hearts and, consequently, writing skills soar.
Students might begin in a Pages class timidly writing just a few sentences, but by the end they are courageously writing multiple paragraphs. Their ideas are valued and that is motivating. We learn in collaboration and that is encouraging. On the last class of each session, each student presents a final project that they created inspired by the book. This project always involves creativity and might be something built, crafted, written, or researched. this opportunity gives students a creative outlet to dive deeper into application and an opportunity to participate in public speaking.
When parents have their students take a Pages class, both will learn how to pace and structure the work. Parents will learn tips to support their student, and both will experience the rhythm of the guides. Students form relationships with the teacher and their cohort of students, relationships that are long lasting. They engage in meaningful and challenging discussions of literature. They learn tools to write quality, original ideas. They learn to read closely and write authentically.
I am really honored to be the Lead Teacher of the Pages team of teachers. You will find bios of all our amazing teachers on our website soon. Please take a look! We are all excited for this year’s offering which we have expanded to multiple times and multiple days hoping to accommodate more of our families’ varying schedules. We have printed a sneak-peak of our session a year in advance so you can plan!! Come July 5, enrollment will open!
We hope to form a relationship with you and your student(s) and, come fall, become your Community of Support. We look forward to the journey and hope to give your student the needed tools to fill their blank canvas, one idea at a time!
I’m certainly looking forward to reading well, writing well and thinking well with your students!