We're on Units 1-2 and I'm liking the structure of the program. Firstly, the child is initially told what to write which is something I'm strongly in favour of. Secondly, from a short paragraph the child is to find three key words per sentence, aka main ideas, then rewrite the piece from his own "notes". Key word outlining is essentially note-taking. Rewriting from notes/key word outlines is done when the original piece of writing is out of the child's view. This prevents plagiarism. Starting these essential skills at an early stage helps the child internalise basic writing structure, which then will allow greater freedom in true creative writing, as the foundations of basic writing would have been set.
Key word outlining (also KWO) and rewriting/composition already has helped my child feel very proud of his work. We have begun using KWO loosely for his other subjects where writing isn't necessary, including tests where key concepts are what I'm looking for. So far the programme is a success.
Here is a glimpse of the steps involved for the beginning of Units 1-2:
Click on the images to enlarge.
Step 3: (page 1)