Andrew Pudewa

Andrew Pudewa

2018 CHOIS Convention Adult and Teen Featured Speaker

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Institute for Excellence in Writing

Andrew Pudewa is the founder and director of the Institute for Excellence in Writing. Presenting throughout North America, he addresses issues relating to teaching, writing, thinking, spelling, and music with clarity, insight, practical experience, and humor. His seminars for parents, students, and teachers have helped transform many a reluctant writer and have equipped educators with powerful tools to dramatically improve students’ skills. Although he is a graduate of the Talent Education Institute in Japan (Suzuki Method) and holds a Certificate of Child Brain Development, his best endorsement is from a young Alaskan boy who called him “the funny man with the wonderful words.” He and his wonderful, heroic wife, Robin, have homeschooled their seven children and are now proud grandparents of eight, making their home in Northeastern Oklahoma’s beautiful green country.

The Four Language Arts

When asked, “What are the language arts?” people may respond by listing numerous subjects: spelling, phonics, grammar, penmanship, copying, dictation, narration, and composition. But actually it’s much simpler! For those adhering to the classical model, those ascribing to a Charlotte Mason approach, or those who just want a common-sense curriculum, there are really only four core language arts: listening, speaking, reading, and writing, and attending well to the first two makes teaching the latter two so much easier. Come prepared to have your educational paradigm adjusted, your load lightened, and your commitment to excellence renewed as you focus on the most important things in the limited time you have.

Teaching and Evaluating Writing

Evaluating a student’s writing can be very difficult for anyone, but especially for the parent who may feel less than perfectly confident n his or her own English or grammar skills. Learn how to provide specific models and stylistic goals for each composition, giving specific assignments to your students for both fiction and non-fiction. Solve the “How long does it have to be?” problem. Never again hear yourself say, “Don’t you want to add a little more detail?” With confidence and precision, you can design and communicate to your students goal- and model-based writing assignments, and can have a concrete tool to objectively evaluate their efforts.

Spelling and the Brain

Many children (and some adults) have difficulty learning to spell, but the difficulty may not be with the student so much as with the method of presentation. Find out in this workshop how spelling information is most efficiently stored in the brain, and why. With a greater insight into the nature of spelling and neurological function presented in this workshop, parents and teachers will be well-equipped to meet the needs of all their children, not just the naturally good spellers.

Paper and Pen: What Research Says

Recent years have seen an enormous increase in the use of technology in education for even the youngest students. But is technology really the cure—all that many believe it to be? While traditional skills such as cursive penmanship are seen as unnecessary in the modern world, the actual research tells a different story. Learn the compelling reasons to choose paper books instead of electronic devices for reading, to handwrite instead of type when note-taking, to teach cursive instead of printing for penmanship, and to grab a pen instead of pencil for composition. Discover how to unleash creativity that goes beyond technology.

Nurturing Competent Communicators – The Power of Linguistic Patterns 

Many parents think that good readers will naturally become good writers. Others think that writing talent is just that—a natural ability—some have it; others don’t. Both are myths. History and modern research show very clearly how good writers have developed. What are the two most critical things you can do as a parent to develop a high level of aptitude, from a young age and into high school? With humor and insight, Andrew will share the two easy but unbelievably powerful things you can do to build language patterns and nurture competent communicators in your family.

Reading Strategies for the Struggling or Non-Reader 

As schools have made reading their new god, believing that producing good readers will solve all their academic problems, many children—the dyslexic, the easily distracted, the auditorily challenged—are truly left behind in the rush to improve test scores. What schools don’t know (but what many parents discover) is that reading is not simply being able to rapidly decode symbols with the eyes. With humor and insight, Andrew will share stories and strategies for helping students who need to engage the cognitive processes of reading, but who are more likely to excel through a wider variety of practical, creative, and imaginative approaches.

 


Sessions for Teens: 

The Profound Influence of Music on Life, Part One 

Music has become such an ever-present influence in our daily lives, we seldom stop to consider what effect it has on us. But we must. As we changed over the last 100 years from being music makers to music consumers, we have gradually lost control over, and even awareness of, our auditory environment. In what way is music beneficial to our bodies and minds? In what circumstances can it actually be harmful? Solid scientific research provides some astounding answers to such questions—indeed, facts that must not be ignored.

The Profound Influence of Music on Life, Part Two: Evaluating Musical Elements

Picking up from where “The Profound Influence of Music on Life” talk leaves off, this presentation uses musical samples to help listeners learn to hear more actively, both to gain the most out of their listening experience as well as to encourage defensive listening with greater discernment. Musical selections of baroque, classical, folk, and popular genres are played and discussed, with the goal of helping listeners identify and understand the significance of rhythm, harmony, melody, repetition, syncopation, pattern, and complexity. Without saying, “This is good, this is bad,” Mr. Pudewa presents a unique perspective on the question of whether all music is equally beneficial to the Christian.

 

Committed to helping parents fulfill their God-given right and responsibility to educate their own children.