How to Improve Writing Skills with Unit Studies

Unit studies are one of the most fun ways to get kids truly involved with their own learning. This is especially true if you can build a unit study around your kid’s or teen’s current interests and passions. When building your own homeschool unit studies, though, you may wonder how to integrate writing skills into your plan.

Below, you will find some wonderfully creative ideas for:

  • how to improve grammar skills with unit studies.
  • how to improve vocabulary skills with unit studies.
  • how to improve writing skills with unit studies.

How to Improve Grammar Skills with Unit Studies

Hard as it may be to believe, grammar can be made fun. (Schoolhouse Rock proves that it can be done!) When focusing on any specific unit study, from literature-based to science themes, here are some engaging ways to add in some grammar practice.

  • Have a verb shout-out. Pick an associated book to go with your unit and see how many verbs your student can find and shout out in one minute.
  • Write five sentences about your unit study topic and leave out all the punctuation. Have your student insert the correct punctuation into each sentence.
  • Pick three characters from your unit study (real or imaginary). Practice using singular and plural possessives by writing down things that only one of the characters might own and things that two or more of them might own.
  • Have your student write a letter to an author or to an expert on the subject you are studying in your unit. This is a wonderful way to review capitalization, punctuation, and other grammar dos and don’ts.

More on Grammar and Writing

How to Improve Vocabulary Skills with Unit Studies

No matter what theme you are focusing on, there is likely already a vocabulary list for it somewhere on the web. VocabularySpellingCity is a tremendous place to start searching for lists by theme, book, or keyword. Once you have a list related to your unit study, you can play interactive vocabulary games, have students create their own crossword puzzles, play vocabulary hopscotch on the sidewalk, design vocabulary trading cards, test knowledge with vocabulary bingo, and so much more. It’s so easy to build vocabulary skills with any unit study you are currently covering.

More on Vocabulary and Writing

How to Improve Writing Skills with Unit Studies

No matter how unique or specific your unit study theme is, there is a way to incorporate writing practice into it. Let’s take the unusual topic of Star Wars, for example. Sure, it’s easy to think of ways to integrate science and math into that one, but what about learning how to write?

See if these Star Wars writing ideas will inspire you on ways to build writing skills with your own unusual unit study theme.

  • Have your student practice writing his favorite scene from a specific movie in the most descriptive language possible.
  • Your student can pretend to have a job as a closed caption writer. Can he or she write the action and dialogue from a specific scene of a movie in a way that someone without hearing could understand what is happening?
  • Does your student have a young sibling or friend? Have them write and illustrate a poster describing Star Wars to a young elementary student who has never heard of it before.
  • Choose two people, ideas, objects, or themes from your study and have your student write a comparison/contrast essay about them.
  • Do a search for Star Wars writing prompts on Pinterest or Google and get those creative writing juices flowing!

More About Writing Prompts

While it may feel challenging to include writing instruction in a non-language-arts-based unit study, the truth is that you certainly can, if you are willing to think creatively. Connecting writing with math, science, and the arts allows students to think about those disciplines in completely new ways. In fact, you may find that by writing about the subjects they are studying, students will retain the information from a unit study much longer! Use these tips with your next unit study to keep writing front and center of whatever you are learning about.