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TOS Review:

HSCrew140x180 When people ask me what the most difficult part of teaching my children at home, I always answer language arts. Grammar is pretty straightforward, but teaching writing scares me sometimes. It’s so subjective.

For this reason, I was excited to have the opportunity to review Time4Writing. Time 4 Writing is an online writing course for children in elementary grades through high school.

How it Works


When you sign your child up for a Time4Writing course, you will be assigned a teacher, who will guide your children through the course. If you don’t know where to place your child, there are guidelines to help you. And if you get started in a course and realize it’s not the right fit, you may change courses within the first 14 days.

Time4Writing also offers a satisfaction guarantee. If you decide the program will not work for you, contact the company within the first 14 days for a refund.

Course selections include (for a full list, check the Time4Writing website):

  • Elementary School Grammar
  • Elementary School Essays
  • Middle School Basic Writing Mechanics
  • Middle School Advanced Essay
  • High School Paragraphs
  • High School Essay Writing

Each course is 8 weeks. Children read the instructions or listen to audio instructions and then complete the assignment. Some assignments, like multiple choice quizzes are graded right away. Writing assignments are submitted to the teacher for grading. It’s very straightforward.

My Experience

At the beginning of August, I signed Stargirl up for the Middle School Essay course. We were scheduled to leave on vacation a couple of weeks after signing up, so I emailed Time4Writing to request a one week extension of the 8 week course, and they quickly approved.


It hardly took any time for Stargirl to figure out what she needed to do. The first thing she did was update her profile with her picture. Apparently that’s important for tween girls.

The assignment instructions were easy to understand, and Stargirl was able to do most of the assignments without any help from me. When she submitted a writing assignment for grading, her teacher always got back to her within 24 hours, except on the weekends. The teacher’s comments were always helpful, too.

Each time the teacher graded the assignment, I received an email, so I could log in and check Stargirl’s progress. Of course, parents can always log in to check on their student, but it was nice to get an email reminder.

My daughter is not a fan of computer work, so I can’t say she loved the course. As a 12 year old, though, some of the writing topics, such as “The Most Disgusting Meal,” appealed to her.


The Nitty Gritty on Time4Writing

The Pros

  • Variety of courses from which to choose
  • Great for parents intimidated by teaching writing
  • Straightforward instructions and assignments
  • Written and audio instructions appeal to both the visual and auditory learner
  • Teacher feedback is quick and helpful
  • Low time commitment for parent

The Cons

  • The course must be finished in 8 weeks (or 9 if you arrange for the extra week ahead of time).
  • Cost of $99 per course might be a problem for some
  • Very hands off for the parent who likes to be hands on

My Overall Opinion

This course wasn’t a great fit for my family, but I can see it’s appeal for other families. Through reviewing this course, I learned that I prefer to be more involved in my daughter’s learning, even if teaching writing intimidates me. That’s my personal preference. For parents who are trying to homeschool, but have limited time to teach, Time4Writing might be a great solution for teaching writing.

We aren’t going to be able to finish the course, as we had so much going on in August, Stargirl got behind. I recommend that anyone signing up for the course make sure they have the time to commit to it for 8 weeks.

Time4Writing Facts

To see what the rest of the TOS Crew thought, check out the TOS Crew Blog!

*Disclaimer: I received a free 8 week Time4Writing course in exchange for my honest review.

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  1. Check out IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing), if you haven’t already. I especially like the fact that you can choose student topics based on the area of history that you are studying (and there are lots of fierce, bloody, gross things that the boys like)! There are also videos of the curriculum developer teaching school teachers how to teach these courses, so it takes the “fear” out of this difficult to teach topic.

    It is not cheap the first year when you need to buy the videos (lots of co-op and homeschool groups have them for you to watch or borrow!), but if you’re serious about your kids being excellent writers, it is one of the best programs out there.

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