FAQ: How much time each day?

Here’s another popular question that shows up in our WriteShop mailbag with regularity!

WriteShop mailbagAs parents plan their students’ schedules, they often ask us to help them figure out how much time each day’s activities take. Our answer? The ever-popular: “It depends!” :o)

HOW MANY HOURS?

Most WriteShop I and II students complete a lesson every two weeks, allowing them to get through one level in a school year. 

In our experience, a student will spend between 4 and 5 hours on a complete lesson. If the lesson is spread over two weeks, you’ll see that more time is spent during Week One (prep and writing), with Week Two devoted to revising.

If every single assignment takes the maximum time (unlikely), the student will spend as much as 6.5 hours over two weeks. But activities vary from day to day, so some days will require more time than others.

Here’s a typical breakdown:

WEEK ONE

Day 1: Pre-Writing Activities: Spend an average of 30 minutes teaching the new lesson and assigning pre-writing exercises. Add 10-20 minutes for Skill Builder.
Day 2: Practice Paragraph: Spend no more than 30 minutes to write a practice paragraph together. If you don’t finish, that’s OK. Add 10-20 minutes for Skill Builder.
Day 3: Brainstorming: 10-30 minutes to pick a new topic and brainstorm for the writing assignment. Add 10-20 minutes for Skill Builder.
Day 4: Sloppy Copy (rough draft): 60-90 minutes. After one hour, stop and pick it up again on Day 5.
Day 5: Flex day (no writing is assigned).

WEEK TWO

Day 6: Students self-edit their “sloppy copies” and write a first revision. 60-90 minutes.
Day 7: Parent Editing: 30-60 minutes per composition.
Day 8: Final Draft: Student spends 30-60 minutes.
Day 9: Grade final drafts (no writing is assigned).
Day 10: Flex day (no writing is assigned).

WriteShop offers other schedules as well. You can use these figures to help you estimate how much daily time to devote when using one of these alternative schedules.

BE FLEXIBLE

Just give yourself permission to be flexible! This is meant as a guide. Some students are slow workers. Others, though normally pretty efficient, may have a bad day or week, thus throwing off the schedule completely! So use these estimated times to help you plan,  knowing that you have the freedom to determine how long to spend on WriteShop lessons and the freedom to adjust as needed.

For more information on WriteShop, visit writeshop.com.

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