Frugal Homeschool High School Writing Curriculum for Reluctant Writers - Creative Writing and Essay Writing

 Summary  Sharing helps for your homeschool high school struggling writers.  This post may included affiliate links to products that we love and have used or would use in our  own homeschool. #homeschoolhighschoolEnglish #strugglingwriters #NaNovWriMo Please see my disclosure policy.

Are your homeschooling high schoolers struggling with essay writing?

It can be one of the hardest skills to master for our high schoolers. One way to help with that could be to take a break from essay writing, and spend some time doing creative writing instead.

Another way to approach writing struggles is to back up and focus on the basis of essay writing.

So today, I am sharing resources for doing either approach:

  • Creative Writing Resources for Homeschool High School English, and
  • Resources for step-by-step Remedial High School Essay Writing

Let's start with creative writing:


Story writing, or creative writing is a great way to get your teen to develop confidence in writing.

Plus it also teaches literary analysis, important to high school English, but in a fun way, through story telling.

Creative writing is a great way to practice writing, especially for those teens who struggle with essay writing.  

And it teaches literary analysis hands-on!  

How does it do that?  

Well, when writing a story, your teen will actually be using the components of literary analysis, when crafting a plot, deciding on a setting, and so forth.

Read on for frugal resources to give your teen a chance to learn creative writing, too.

Frugal Creative Writing Resources

1.  "No Plot, No Problem" Book 

No Plot? No Problem NaNoWriMo Review at The Curriculum Choice

To get started, my daughter and I ordered No Plot? No Problem! "It is a low-stress, guide to writing a novel in 30 days, and it helped a lot to encourage my creative writer.  

"This book is full of helpful ways to get past the fear of putting words on the page, and "leaving your Inner Editor behind."  
Click here for the rest of my review of this book.

2.  Resources on The NaNoWriMo site

The NaNoWriMo site includes LOTS of i
nfo for writers of all ages. 

For teens who are really into creative writing, they might like another great resource - How to Write a Novel in a Month.

NaNovWriMo gives the student guidance and some instruction, but it is a loosely structured program, perfect for my teen who already had written some short stories.  

For students who would like a more structured program for creative writing, the One Year Adventure Novel program might be a better fit. 

This course gives your teen much more structure.  BUT it could still be used as a way to take a break from the routine.  

This course follows a step by step program, teaching your teen all about story writing, using video instruction.  They also offer a community online, and extensive support resources.  

More information on it is here, or click here  to read the rest of my review of this course.

This course is not frugally priced.  But the 7 Sisters resources are.

4.  7 Sisters Creative Writing Resources

Have you seen the creative writing courses from 7 Sisters Homeschool?  

They are written by a veteran homeschooling mom who has already graduated her kids and helped them get into college, too.

All of the 7 Sisters homeschool courses are in downloadable PDF format, with no busy work.  

They have a lot of frugal English courses available in Essay Writing, Literature and Composition.  Plus they offer this introductory course in Creative Writing:

This beginning short story course is called Introduction to Creative Writing - Family Narrative 

What fun!

It is a 23 page downloadable PDF writing guide, to guide your teen to get started writing their first short story.

I like how creative writing is presented in an easy to follow, step by step manner, to ensure success.  

Then the 7 Sisters Homeschool site goes on to offer more creative writing PDF courses, including:

What fun, tall tales!  

Here's some more writing projects to consider for your high schooler -  4 Yearly Writing Projects from our friend, Vicki.

I wish we had found these homeschool high school creative writing courses when my daughter was in high school. 

Maybe your struggling writer does not like fantasy or story telling.  

Another approach for struggling teen writers is to back up their writing curriculum and review the basics of essay writing instead.

Build Up Essay Writing Skills!

One of our favorite resources for doing just that are the essay writing courses from 7 Sisters Homeschool.

They begin to offer:
  • essay writing at middle school level 
  • then go on to offer beginning high school essays
  • intermediate high school essays
  • and advanced high school essay writing 

And all of these essay writing courses are especially frugal.

Here's my best tip:

No worries about doing a lower grade essay writing course.  
Pick whichever one you think will be at your teen's skill level.

For review, your teen could start with middle school essay writing, here.  

The beauty of homeschooling is that we don't have to stick with grade levels.  We can use whichever homeschool curriculum that fits our teens the best.

As it is written to the middle schooler and focuses the basics of essay writing, that might be a really good fit for your struggling writer.

It includes:
  • Basic essay format
  • 3 different types of essays
  • How to write a letter to the editor
  • Tips for taking a short answer essay test

Tips for taking a short answer essay test is included, which gives practice for short essay writing.

Working on a short essay can be so much less daunting and can really help our reluctant high school writers.

That practice can also come in handy at the time for the SAT, CLT or ACT testing, as many of their questions are short essay ones.

Once your student gets more comfortable with how to do the basic essay format, then they could be ready to go on to the 7 Sisters Homeschool High School Essay Writing Courses or another writing curriculum that you like.

Here are the 7 Sisters Homeschool High School Writing Courses:

2.  Spectrum Writing Courses

Another way to do remedial essay writing review for your reluctant writers is to use the 8th grade writing course from Spectrum.

Spectrum Writing uses a workbook format and offers a wide variety of writing activities, with clear instructions and diagrams to help.

It includes writing activities which cover all of these basic skills:

  • Writing Basics
  • Expressive Writing  (includes personal narrative)
  • Descriptive Writing (includes sensory)
  • To entertain (story writing)
  • Persuasive Writing  (debate kids would love this chapter)
  • Explanatory Writing (such as science experiment write-ups)
  • Informational  (includes recipes, how to’s)

And you don't have to work through this book in order.  Your teen can flip through it and choose the writing activity that she would like to start with.

This workbook included many clearly written forms which help my teen to put her thoughts down on paper, and guide her through the steps of writing... 

It consists of 144 pages at the cost of a little less than $11.00. I have a review of Spectrum Writing 8 - Review is here, for more information.

Once your student is more comfortable with the basics of essay writing, then they can go on to continue building their writing skills with: 


So on your teen's transcripts, if you use the middle school essay writing course, I would just call it "Beginning Essay Writing".  

And since it is a 10 week course, it would count as a 1/2 semester of homeschool English credit.

Whether you go with a creative writing approach, or a remedial essay writing approach, your teen will benefit from the efforts you make to help them overcome their writing struggles.

For more detailed info on the very FRUGAL 7 Sisters Creative and Essay Writing Courses and more, you might like this post below, for the Authoritative Guide to Homeschool High School Literature.

For more information on homeschooling high school, check out my book below:

Free to Read on Amazon Prime

Are you Homeschooling High School and are you wondering:
  • how to make transcripts
  • how to assign high school credit
  • and all those important record keeping details?
For more information: 
Homeschooling High School with College in Mind. 

Thanks for stopping by BJ's Homeschool,


Betsy is mom to her now college grad, whom she homeschooled through high school.  She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early yearshighschool
collegegifted/2e and wrote -Homeschooling High School with College in Mind, 2nd Edition,   She offers homeschool help through messages at BJ's Consulting and has had some of her articles picked up by the Huffington Post.

Want to stay in touch?

Subscribe, Pinterest, Facebook 

No spam ever.  
Just encouragement for your homeschool 
in your inbox.

Copyright 2022
Updated 2019 All Rights Reserved

No comments:

Post a Comment

Get more Updates

* indicates required
First Name
Email Address *