Are you on the hunt for a fantastic online writing program for your homeschool? Do you have a homeschooler who is a reluctant writer? Has writing become a power struggle in your home? If so, please know you aren’t alone. Today, I am sharing the value of an online writing program in your homeschool… especially for families who have struggling writers!
If you’ve been hanging around with us for any length of time, you already know my 10-year-old son is a reluctant writer.
We all have strengths and weaknesses. Every single one of us! My little guy might not enjoy writing, but he is a whizz at math, and he has an amazing imagination and endless creativity.
The trick, as a homeschool parent, is to find a way to capture those strengths and use them to work on a child’s weaknesses. This can be easier said than done, but today I am sharing a program that has prompted oodles of writing over here without the power struggles.
The Value Of An Online Writing Program In Your Homeschool
*Disclosure: I received free access to Night Zookeeper and was compensated for my time to write this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. When it comes to homeschool reviews, I am highly selective. I only share resources that I would use with my own family and those that I believe other homeschool families will enjoy.
The Ups and Downs of Teaching Writing in Your Homeschool
My youngest son will go to great lengths to avoid writing. For any assignment, he will use his awesome math skills to figure out the fewest possible letters required.
In the past, I’ve shared stories about his reluctance to put pencil to paper. I told you about the time he was asked to write several state mottos as part of a copywork exercise for a homeschool co-op. The little guy dug in his heels and would only write the word motto.
And I told you about the time, in another homeschool group, he was asked to draw a self-portrait and write a brief bio. He drew the picture no problem-o, but the bio was another story. His bio included the following: I despise asparagus. Yup, that’s all he wrote.
Another time, he created his language system consisting of abbreviated words that, all too often, only he could discern. He didn’t love it when I told him that I dsps aspgs isn’t the same thing as I despise asparagus.
What I’m trying to tell you is that writing is not his jam. He’s a pretty easy-going fella, but not when it comes to writing assignments! A traditional homeschool writing assignment can send him from smiling goofball to a mushy mess of a boy in seconds.
To get him writing without the power struggle and tears, I have to get creative and call in a third party. And that third party needs to engage him and incorporate his many strengths. When engaged and inspired, writing turns from work to play.
This year, we’ve had a lot of success with an online writing program called Night Zookeeper.
The Benefits Of Online Learning
My youngest is not the first of my kiddos to struggle with a particular subject. In the past, my big kids have grown frustrated with math (and their teacher, ahem!). In those instances, when homeschooling devolves into angry words and tears, I like to outsource.
When it comes to outsourcing pain points in our homeschool, I almost always turn to online learning opportunities because they work great for our homeschooling family.
Online learning has many benefits for homeschool families:
- Online learning offers a multi-sensory approach to academic subjects. This helps to increase engagement, especially for subjects that a student finds challenging. When a student is engaged in the learning process, all of that information is more likely to stick!
- Often, online learning incorporates gamification. As a gameschooling family, game-based learning is always a win! Gameschooling fuels learning, sparks creativity, and boosts confidence. Making a mistake while playing feels so much different than red pen marks on a workbook page. When a student is not afraid to fail, they grow in skill and confidence!
- Students often perceive online learning options to be more fun. My children (age 10-, 12-, and 13-years) thoroughly enjoy online learning at this stage of our homeschool game.
- Online learning takes the pressure off of homeschool parents and their kiddos. Calling in a third party can help improve the atmosphere of your homeschool by reducing stress, tears, and power struggles.
- Online learning programs, like Night Zookeeper, include a parent dashboard where you can chart measurable growth in skills. This, in turn, boosts parent confidence and can help with homeschool documentation.
I am happy to report that Night Zookeeper delivers on all four aforementioned benefits!
Night Zookeeper: An Online Writing Program for Your Homeschool
Night Zookeeper is an award-winning online creative writing program for kids ages 5-12+. The Night Zookeeper online platform includes an engaging storyline and features highly engaging games and activities.
My youngest son has been enjoying Night Zookeeper all year long! He doesn’t love to write, but he cannot resist a delicious storyline or a game! Night Zookeeper offers a treasure trove of stealth learning that captivates the imagination of creative kiddos.
Night Zookeeper is a gamified online writing program for children who love stories.
This gamified online writing platform is based on the Night Zookeeper chapter book series.
The program is designed to improve children’s writing skills. Night Zookeeper includes interactive games, lessons, and activities that incorporate the following skills:
- reading comprehension
When a child first starts Night Zookeeper, they are assigned a randomly generated name and they are asked to create their avatar.
The child creates an avatar using Night Zookeeper’s drawing tool. Then, they head over to their zoo. Children can uncover sections of their zoo when they complete activities, games, and challenges, as you can see here:
The child’s goal is to help protect the Night Zoo from attack from the bad guys, who are called Voids. They can do this by earning points and “leveling up” during activities, games, and challenges.
If you’d like to see more examples of lessons provided, check the first article I wrote about our family’s experience Night Zookeeper for video examples!
Play-Based Writing for Your Reluctant Writer
My 10-year-old resistant writer has been enjoying Night Zookeeper since the summer. That says a lot! I highly recommend checking out Night Zookeeper if you have a kiddo who could use a little incentive in the writing department!
Click here for 50% off an annual Night Zookeeper subscription. This annual price is $59.99 for a single-child subscription and $77.99 for 2-3 children. More children can be added at a bespoke price. When you sign up for an annual membership using this link, you will get a free 7-day trial and then get 50% off on the yearly subscription.
Read More About Our Experience with Night Zookeeper
If you’d like to read more about our family’s experience, check out these related articles:
- A Play-Based Homeschool Writing Program Your Kids Will Love
- Homeschool Help For Your Struggling Writer