Today, Werd Coach Youth will begin offering creative writing lessons, at the National Drama Association of T&T’s (NDATT) Studios, located at 97 Southern Main Road, Curepe. The sessions, which target students in Standards 3 to 5, will run until June 2020.
Werd Coach founder Shelley-Ann Edwards-Barran said she targeted those three Standards for different reasons, and explained: “Standard 3 is where students begin engaging in longer, more detailed writing. This is the best time to get children fired up about writing. Standard 4 is where most parents really buckle down with their children for SEA preparation, and for many, anxiety steps in.
“This is a good time to alleviate fears and get the right kind of writing instruction that would develop the skills needed for SEA and beyond. Standard 5 is the point at which panic sets in, and those who are struggling need the most attention. It’s not too late to approach writing from a different perspective to give students the confidence they need to write better than they’ve ever done before.”
She said parents can enrol their children for one, two or three terms over the academic term.
“The class will meet from 3.30 pm to 6 pm on Tuesday afternoon. Between 3.30 and 4 pm, individual attention will be given with classwork. From 4 to 5 pm there will be lessons, writing practice will take place between 5 and 5.30 pm, and individual work between 5.30 pm to 6 pm. Classes cost $1,200 per term, payable in three instalments of $400 each. The class will only accommodate six students, so call to register now.”
Edwards-Barran said the programme was not for parents who are only interested in having their children pass SEA, and added: “This programme aims at giving children an appreciation for writing, enhancing their skills, and showing them how to interact with words to understand what they read. These are skills for life, not just for an exam. It just so happens that knowing these things will allow children to perform well on exams testing these skills.
“Children are going to have the most fun they’ve ever had learning about writing and reading comprehension. Because our approach is different, using drama and art and scientific experiments to explore and investigate writing concepts, children will not grow up viewing writing as a tedious and difficult annoyance. They will actually enjoy the process and appreciate the need for knowing how to write well while they learn to write well.”
The educator, who said she will also be offering classes for students in Standards 4 and 5, as well as those working towards CSEC 2020, said: “There will be a one-week workshop specially designed for Standard 4 and Standard 5 students from December 16 to 20.
“The morning session is dedicated to writing reports, the afternoon session for writing narratives. Parents can choose which session to send their children, or send them to both. Workbooks will be provided for each session.
“Only ten students will be accepted per session. Call 349-0437 for more information and to reserve a space. I will also be tutoring English A on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 pm to 8 pm. This programme is geared toward repeaters, older individuals who are upgrading their skills, and students who don’t thrive in mainstream instruction.”
Also call 393-3529 or 764-0644 for more information.
Edwards-Barran said children need to learn to communicate well in writing, “and to effectively decipher other people’s written communication. Whether the purpose of communication is to inform, entertain, or persuade, the intention is to communicate an idea.
“Ideas come when we interact with the world around us, finding beauty, solving challenges, thinking about who we are and why we’re here, and that is what children need to learn.
“Creative writing provides an opportunity to learn how to express ideas in ways that others can understand, and how to read what others have expressed and understand it for ourselves. Creative writing is more than narratives, poems, graphics, and reports. It’s about having something to say and knowing how to say it.”