Writing & English Classes 2020

I’m happy to share my course descriptions for this 2020-2021 school year. I will be offering three LIVE yearlong courses at Shanan Tutorials, which meets at Spirit of Joy Lutheran Church in the Weddington/Matthews, NC area. Registration for courses is open now.

Shanan is committed to LIVE on site classes as long as we are permitted. All classes will be adjusted to virtual if our venue requires it. Here are some answers to Co-Vid related questions. Understandably, we cannot guarantee which format we will be permitted to offer; however, as a homeschool parent myself, I can say that, for my own children, LIVE LOCAL classes, even when combined with virtual, are preferable to only online offerings with teachers and classmates they’ve never met. Additionally, Shanan is open to families who have already homeschooled AT LEAST one year. This means that Shanan families are those who are accustomed to the homeschool environment and not freshly joining it due to Co-Vid. I anticipate this will make a big difference in the quality of the environment.

The following video shows me describing my classes. A concise description with times, prices, and current enrollment is described below the video.

All families who have taken any course with me in the past will be given a 10% discount off of tuition. 

Location:Shanan Tutorials at Spirit of Joy Lutheran 8900 Potter Road, Weddington

32 Weeks: 15 Fall, 17 Spring

Shanan offers many courses for 8th-12th grade homeschoolers. Some advanced 7th graders are accepted to my classes and others. I’ve linked their schedule for this year for your convenience.

**Registration at Shanan is $125/student or $250/family regardless of number of classes taken. This covers building insurance and administrative costs. They offer free study halls where students can work between classes. I would like to point out that, even though Shanan courses may seem expensive when compared to some other drop-off classes or online courses, the value for each contact hour is better for Shanan than almost any other local option. I invite you to check out this post regarding that topic. My children have really enjoyed math and science there, which is why I looked into teaching there. Especially if parents are not providing supplemental instruction, please consider the fact that students SHOULD receive at least 75 minutes per week of quality instruction at minimum to really consider the class sufficient for HSC (HIGH SCHOOL CREDIT). 

Literary Genres with Honors Option – Tutor: M&W 12:15-1:30: 80 contact hours

This class is a survey of literature, covering in equal parts novels, short stories, plays, and poetry. Major cannonical authors such as Shakespeare, Dickens, Lee, Poe, Sophicles, Ibsen, Homer, Hughes, and Dickinson are just a FEW that we may cover. The course will emphasize relevant features of each genre and cover a general understanding of literary devices such as symbolism, irony, foreshadowing, poetic language, etc. Reading comprehension will be a major emphasis of this class as we analyze and discuss our readings. ​While this is primarily a literature class, students will write paragraph and essay responses to literature selections. Diversity WILL be an emphasis.

Text: Windows to the World: An Introduction to Literary Analysis by Lesha Myers (samples available at links), To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Other novels and plays will be determined second semester based on what students have already read. For what it’s worth, we WILL be discussing white saviorism within To Kill a Mockingbird.  
Annual Tuition: $580/80 Contact hours 
Recommended: 9th/10th grade 
Credit: 1 credit of English
Class Maximum: 15 (Currently 11 enrolled)

Introduction to Grammar and Composition: Wed 10:30-1:45: 40 Contact Hours 

Introduction to Grammar and Composition is a beginning grammar and essay writing course. During the Fall semester, we will emphasize grammar, sentence construction, and paragraph formation. Using the Michael Clay Thompson and Killgallon methodology, we will learn sentence analysis and combination methods. During spring semester we will introduce the five paragraph essay in three parts, learning how to format and construct a basic 5-paragraph essay. 

Text: Grammar for Middle School  and Paragraphs for Middle School by Don and Jenny Killgallon. Workbooks MUST be consumable. High school aged students should not feel belittled by “Middle School” texts. This simply means that the texts that we will imitate are more those read by middle school aged students (Rowling, Lewis, Collins) rather than upper level high school texts. (Free downloadable sample chapters from the worktexts are available at that website.)
Course Credit: 1 HSC of English
Available: 8th-10th (Students not ready for Pre-College Writing)
Annual Tuition: $400/ 40 contact hours 
Class Maximum: 15 (8 enrolled)

Creative Writing — Wednesday ONLY: 9:15-10: 30 AND 1:30-2:45  40 contact hours

This writing elective class will give interested writers encouragement and feedback for a wide for variety of writing styles, including poetry, personal essays, and stories. We will hone skills of description, dialogue, characterization, and plot development. We will share and peer edit on a regular basis, developing our skills with positive constructive criticism. Designed as an elective rather than a core language arts class, this course will have limited homework beyond developing a daily habit of creative writing for class review.

Text:We will use The Creative Writer Level 3  by Boris Fishman. Here’s a video description of the series from Susan Wise Bauer from The Well Trained Mind.
Annual Tuition: $400/ 40 Contact hours 
Recommended: 8th-12th
Credit: 1 elective credit
Class Minimums: 5 (The morning class currently has 2 students enrolled. The afternoon class has 4. If minimums are not met, I will attempt to combine the sections.)

Please email katrina@katrinaryder.com with any questions. Further information can be found at Shanan Classical Tutorials.


***For better or for worse, there is nothing explicitly “classical” about my courses. I neither eschew or embrace this philosophy wholeheartedly, nor does the curriculum that I use. I think that both students WITH and WITHOUT a classical background can thrive in my classroom.