Monday, June 22, 2009

Copywork

Copywork is an old form of language arts study. Copywork can be used for a multitude of things. It is a simple process that has many rewards.

The basic premise of copywork is to have your student copy from great literature, or from great quotes. The child learns spelling and grammar in this way. He also learns about different styles of writing. This is not an overt learning. Rather, this is an absorption that all writers need in order to write well. Depending on the quotes or literature you use, you can also use this to further your student's knowledge of history, literature, science, math, current events, foreign languages, geography, citizenship, and more. This also helps them improve their handwriting.

One of my friends likes to do what she calls "Character Quotes". Rather than using a different quote each time her children do copywork, she has them use the same quote all week. She ties their copywork to things she believes they need to work on in their characters.

Some of the quotes we've used this year are:

"Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom." Thomas Jefferson

"Anger is a wind which blows out the lamp of the mind." Robert Green Ingersoll

"If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything." Mark Twain

"We can't all be Washingtons, but we can all be patriots." Charles F. Browne

"Where liberty dwells, there is my country." Benjamin Frankly

Copywork has many benefits. My children have come to enjoy copywork, for the most part. I was able to start their copywork with quotes that they enjoyed. I found humorous quotes from their readings for Xavier. I found patriotic quotes for Gabriel. As a result, they got into the idea without much resistance.

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