Building Writing Skills with The Critical Thinking Co. REVIEW

I am always on the hunt for anything to help build writing skills, and help Mr. B with his written communication. This is a serious deficit for him, so when a fun, unique approach came up for review, I had to jump at the chance! We are so blessed to have received Building Writing Skills - Essential Tips & Tricks (Grades 6-12+) from The Critical Thinking Co.   We have reviewed several things in the past for The Critical Thinking Co., so I was really excited to try out this digital product! 

There is a lot covered in this book. This book helps teach your child writing skills, such as choosing the proper voice, vivid verbs to make for a more interesting written piece, alliteration, similes, and more. Here's a screen shot of the Table of Contents. 

Each section has a teaching box, and then several activities that reinforce the concept being learned. I really appreciated the repetition for mastery, and Mr. B really appreciated the varied activities so he didn't get bored doing them. 

Follow the teaching box, will be the activities. Each page features a refresher of what is being learned. 

I thought this was just an average PDF that we'd have to print off, but it's not. I had to download a different PDF reader for this book, and it's so cool! Mr. B is able to utilize a Typewriter feature, and type within the document. Unfortunately, this doesn't save like he assumed so he lost all of his work. It works brilliantly if you print the typed on page individually. The ability to type out the work, and then print the page, works great for kiddos like Mr. B who have weaker handwriting skills, and need the ability to type more. Instead of fighting with him to just finish one page, I look over and he's on his 4th page! I had to stop him so I could make sure he would retain what he is learning. He really used his brain muscle on these activities, and I  know he's learning a lot from them because I will go back and ask him some repeat questions, or ask my own, and he answers correctly. 

And when printed, they look just like that. It's easy for him, and it's easy for me to print with his answers on there, and stick the pages with his end of the year portfolio. 


Overall, we really like this. It is packed with topics to learn, easy to type in the PDF and then print, and it has varied activities that are short in duration, but long in retained learning. We both highly recommend this to others. 

Does The Critical Thinking Co. Pass My 4 Ingredient Test?

1.) Customization: Is it easily adaptable? Can we customize it to fit “us?” Can we modify or set our own schedule? Can we take breaks, jump ahead, or flat out skip?

Even though this is a digital product, it is a download, so you can move about as you see fit. We chose to start from page one, but you could certainly target problem areas. Since it is a physical product, you can take breaks as needed. 

2.) Value: Is it long lasting? Will it cover multiple grade ranges? Are you locked in to one specific grade level? Are there hidden fees?

There are no hidden fees, but be prepared to print the digital copy. It covers grades 6 and above. 

3.) Attention span: Is it boring? Is it engaging? Is it varied enough for ADHD? Does it last too long? 

This is great for kiddos who need to type more than write. The lessons are varied enough so that boredom doesn't hit, and they are short enough that attention isn't lost. 

4.) Does it tie into other things we already have.

This is strictly a language arts program, but writing skills do transcend the subjects, so I feel it is a really important skill to develop. 

Please be sure to check out The Homeschool Review Crew to read more reviews. The Critical Thinking Co. blessed the crew with a number of choices, so be sure to read reviews for the others! 

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