Welcome to the Structured Writing method of teaching academic writing. The
Structured Writing method defines academic writing as writing that is controlled
by one idea or position and is used for explaining, defining, categorizing,
persuading, informing, comparing, and/or describing.
This curriculum is college preparatory and best suited for middle school and
high school students. However, parts of the curriculum are appropriate for
younger students. Structured Writing is such a complete approach to teaching
academic writing that it is the only writing curriculum you will ever need. Once
you begin teaching Structured Writing, you will teach it every year until your
student graduates. In fact, your student may likely take the student manual to
college as a ready writing reference book!
Structured Writing presents a unique, successful method for teaching academic
writing that will take you and your student from the single paragraph assignment
to the multi-paragraph paper, building a foundation for future writing as you
go. If you have experienced difficulty teaching your student or students how to
write effective paragraphs and/or papers, then the Structured Writing curriculum
is designed for you.
The Structured Writing method takes the position that a student will best
understand writing as a whole if given a simple method for relating different
types of writing to each other. The basic paragraph unit of the Structured
Writing method was developed for this purpose. The basic paragraph unit allows
the student to understand paragraphing in its simplest, most concrete form,
providing a reference and foundation upon which more complex writing can be
built and developed. This unit, once mastered, becomes a ready reference point
for any writing assignment, from the simple, basic paragraph to a classic
five-paragraph theme paper, and then finally, other types of multi-paragraph
The basic paragraph unit as a reference unit is one of two major discoveries
that makes the Structured Writing method more concrete and systematic than other
writing programs. The other discovery is color-coding. All paragraphs in
Structured Writing are color-coded. Color-coding allows the student to "see" the
different parts of a paragraph and how the parts fit together to make a whole.
Since the student is soon able to relate information going into paragraphs by
color and structure, the writing process becomes much more concrete and doable.
Thus, much of the fear of the writing process itself is removed.
Structured Writing is designed to teach the how-to-dos behind the what-to-dos in
the world of expository writing. This method is step-by-step, user friendly,
concrete, and addresses writing as a separate subject, not an occasional
assignment. Structured Writing is designed to help you, the teacher, know and
understand not only what to teach your student or students, but how to teach
Laura George, Author of Structured Writing