Essential Conversations

This blog is devoted to all aspects of writing, literature, and teaching. We are excited to partner with you on your homeschool journey and provide you with helpful and quality content in our blog posts.
Danielle Nettleton
By: Danielle Nettleton
April 18, 2019

Writing Well: Why Homeschool Students Have an Edge

In his groundbreaking book Amusing Ourselves to Death, critic and educator Neil Postman discusses society’s shift from what he deems the Age of Typography to the Age of Show Business—that is, a change from the importance of words to the importance of television and other visual media.   According to Postman, the decline of writing began as early as the nineteenth century with Samuel Morse’s invention of the telegraph and continued on with radio, movies, and television. This …
Danielle Nettleton
By: Danielle Nettleton
March 28, 2019

What’s the Main Idea Here? Homeschool Students & the Importance of Theme in Narratives

Narratives, as Mr. Stephens often points out in his videos and curriculum, are fun to write and fun to read. Whether personal or imaginative, they tend to allow for more expression and creativity than compositions such as essays or research papers.   Writing the narrative can be easier as well, for the homeschool student is usually describing a series of events (hopefully not unfortunate) in the order that they occurred. The writing is fun; the construction is simple. …
Danielle Nettleton
By: Danielle Nettleton
March 14, 2019

Focusing on One Thing at a Time: Homeschool Students & The Writing Process

The Setup   The year is 2016; the month is May. I have just turned in to my professor a ten-page paper discussing Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus, a paper that will eventually be submitted and accepted by the Sigma Tau Delta Review. This paper utilized many sources, seven of which were cited. It also followed MLA guidelines and has been formatted precisely. Did I write this paper in one sitting, in order, with perfect grammar and formatting?   Of …
Hope Tolbert
By: Hope Tolbert
March 7, 2019

When to Correct Someone’s Writing and When to Hold Back

Last week, I posted a picture to Instagram. Immediately after I clicked “Share,” my phone started buzzing in my hands. “Hey, Hope! It’s Jenna!” “Oh, hey! What’s up?” “Well, I’m actually at lunch with some friends, so I can’t really talk, but you made a spelling error in the caption under that picture you just posted. It’s super cute and everything, but you spelled a word wrong.” “Oh… Thank you?” “Yeah, absolutely! Well I’m with people, so I …