This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

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Simplified Writing for Middle School 4: Writing Form & Style (MS 7/8-4)

Help your middle school student be fully prepared for high school writing by learning the forms of nonfiction, fiction, informational writing, journalism, descriptive writing, reviews, speeches, Biblical writing, & more. Your student will learn to write in all these forms and how to choose the exact, clear style needed for future writing success.

Total classes: 8

Prerequisite: Registration in Simplified Writing for Middle School 3: Writing the Excellent Essay (MS 7/8-3). If your student is unable to take the previous courses LIVE, then at a minimum, he or she can watch the recordings on Unlimited Access before taking this course. An alternative to the prerequisite: a passing assessment from the Aquinas Writing Advantage Assessment service. Please contact [email protected] for any questions on permissions.

Suggested grade level: 8th or accelerated 7th grade

Suggested credit: One-half (½) semester Writing or English. Precede with 7/8-3 for a full semester’s credit for writing.


Did you know there is more than one way to write “right”? To be successful in high school and college, students must write in many different styles and tones, with different approaches. This critical writing course is the “launching point” for your student to be fully prepared for high school writing — introducing your student to the many different rhetorical forms of non-fiction and fiction writing. You’ll learn about descriptive writing, reviews, how-to articles and instructions, news articles and journalistic reporting, types of business writing, speeches, creative/expressive story writing (songs, plays, and other forms of story), and the kinds of writing found in the bible (epistles/letters, genealogical writing, historical narratives, laws and statutory writing, parables, poetry, and proverbial writing). Special emphasis is placed on knowing the characteristics of each kind of writing — and how to identify the different types of writing. Your student will also practice writing within most of the forms, using all of the skills learned to this point in the Essentials and Simplified Writing courses for middle school students. Students completing the 6/7 and 7/8 Series courses (including this course) are fully prepared for high school writing!


Class 1: Types of Writing Overview, Purpose and Audience, Nonfiction and Fiction Writing

Class 2: How-to Writing and Instructional Writing

Class 3: An Introduction to Journalism and News Reporting

Class 4: Expressive Writing – Forms of Story and Expression

Class 5: Descriptive Writing

Class 6: Business Writing

Class 7: Writing Reviews and Speeches

Class 8: Forms of Writing in the Bible

Materials and Homework

Course Materials: Course materials are included FREE. Microsoft Word or the ability to convert a document to a Word-compatible document is required, as all assignments are submitted in Word. If you do not own Microsoft Word, you can use a system such as Google Docs that converts to Word documents FREE.

Homework: Weekly writing assignments, with grading and direct feedback from the instructor. Estimated three (3) to five (5) hours per week for homework outside of class time, depending on the student’s ability.

Important Dates

Class Dates and Starting Times:

Mondays, March 18 to May 13, 2024. No class April 1 (Easter Monday)
4:00 PM Eastern (3:00 Central; 2:00 Mountain; 1:00 Pacific)

Duration per class: 55 minutes

Choose from courses in all subject areas for your upper grade school, middle school, and high school student—taught by worldwide experts in Catholic education.
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