Topic | Using Language Well Book 3 with a 9th grader?

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  • Angie

    Dear Sonya,

    I have a question regarding Using Language Well, Book 3 with an older student. I just ordered this to use with my 7th grade son (my previous plan was to use AG this year, but I am so excited we get to use ULW!) My 9th grade daughter has completed all units of AG and is very strong in her grammar knowledge and can diagram very well, but I am not sure where to go with her from here. I don’t know how to practically implement grammatical concepts into her English and composition lessons. We really haven’t done any practice with her grammar outside of AG. She has already gone through Spelling Wisdom Book 3 for Dictation. I was thinking of having her go through ULW 3  at a faster rate, just for language lessons, but I don’t know if it would be too simple for her? My other thought was to have her analyze sentences from her own readings each week. Any suggestions?

    Thank you,


    Sonya Shafer

    Let’s consider some options together.

    Option #1: She could analyze sentences from her own readings. Do you feel comfortable correcting them without a teacher guide to make sure they are accurate?

    Option #2: She could do only the ULW lessons for Book 3 to review analyzing from a little different angle and to cover some other aspects of grammar and composition, like comma usage, poetry analysis, figures of speech, etc. Look at the complete list of points covered in Book 3 (back of the teacher book sample; also on the placement guide) and see how many of those would be new to her and how many would be review. Some review may be helpful, but you don’t want to bore her with redundant lessons on material she already knows like the back of her hand. If you chose this option, she could do her dictation from Spelling Wisdom, Book 4.

    Option #3: Focus on composition skills with AG’s Beyond the Book Report, #3. It teaches the essay and the research paper, among other types of writing. It’s a concise study. Once she finishes it, you could assign those types of narrations during exam weeks the rest of the year for more practice.



    I like these ideas. It’s so helpful to see it laid out like that!  I do feel confident in correcting her sentences and diagrams, however  I feel I need guidance in instructing how to apply what she is analyzing into her writing (which it sounds like the future volumes of Using Language Well will provide). Good writing comes naturally to her though so perhaps this wouldn’t be as daunting a task with her as I make it out to be  (I am thankful that the future guides will most likely be here for the rest of my children though!) I am awaiting book 3 in the mail so once it’s here I will take a closer look at the topics, but I think she could benefit from analyzing language from a different angle and be  more attentive to the mechanics of punctation. I will take a closer look at Beyond the Book Report #3 and see how I could schedule that for her next term along with still setting aside time for her to analyze her grammar.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and laying out these options. And I am so thankful for the work you have done in Using Language Well!


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