When I read The Writing Revolution, I knew I wanted to use the methods outlined in the book to teach academic writing to my own kids. These methods work well with core content subjects like history and science, but I knew they could be a great addition to studying literature.
Reading books with kids is a great way to inspire a love of reading and help kids see the world through the eyes of characters both the same and different from them. But you can't just read the book. Sometimes, you need to take the time to dig into the story and have discussions. Books that are worth talking about are also worth writing about.
Novel studies are a staple in homeschools and classrooms, but not just any book works well for a novel study. I carefully choose the books for the LitHouse Learning Novel Studies and the level they are most appropriate for. I choose books that can lead to good discussions, that are challenging in some way, and that include diverse characters and experiences.
All of the novel studies made in September 2022 and after will also include discussion prompts for each chapter. It's important to discuss books as you read them, not just at the end.
Writing about novels helps kids retain more of the content so they can understand the deeper themes when they finish reading the book. It anchors writing practice to something meaningful that kids can connect with.
When I was designing the novel studies, I knew there were some important things I wanted to include:
- Meaningful writing activities, not busy work!
- A note-taking project that would encourage deeper thinking about an aspect of the novel
- Book club activities and discussion questions
- For kids to enjoy the novel without getting bogged down in tedious work
By using one LitHouse Learning Novel Study every month, you will give your kids the consistent writing practice they need, enhance their worldview, and help them develop deep thinking skills. I choose and recommend books that are beautiful and worthwhile.
Using novel studies to teach writing will help your kids learn to read for comprehension, analyze what they read, and share their own thoughts about a subject. This gives kids the opportunity to write about a story or character they can connect with which makes it a more enjoyable experience.