The Arrow

Monthly language arts support shot into your home each month!

2015-2016 Book List (books not included)

August: The Mysterious Benedict Society (Trenton Lee Stewart)
September: Flora and Ulysses (Kate DiCamillo)
October: How to Eat Fried Worms (Thomas Rockwell)
November: Wonder (R. J. Palacio)
December: Poppy (Avi)
January: Love That Dog (Sharon Creech)
February: Courage Has No Color (Tanya Lee Stone - Non-fiction)
March: Understood Betsy (Dorothy Canfield Fisher)
April: Cracker: The Best Dog in Vietnam (Cynthia Kadohata)
May: Love Ruby Lavender (Deborah Wiles)

The Arrow is the monthly digital product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel (you purchase or obtain the novels yourself). It’s geared toward children ages 8-11 and is an indispensable tool for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

For younger students, check out A Quiver of Arrows (1st-2nd grades).  For 6th-7th grade students, check out A Pouch of Boomerangs.

How it works
The Arrow is designed for 3rd to 6th grades. You will receive ten digital literature guides that are released on the first of each month. The first issue is published in August and the last is published in May. You will receive all ten by May no matter what month you purchase The Arrow. Within 48 hours of your purchase (after August 1, 2015), a Brave Writer administrator will create a username and password for you so that you may login into the folder that houses The Arrow. You will return to that folder each month to pick up your digital downloads.

Photos: book titles for the year (August at the top, May at the bottom); printed-at-home copies of the product.

For kids who enjoy talking about books: 
Check out the Arrow Book Club.

Monthly Subscription

You can pay monthly for $9.95. (You will be taken to Paypal.)

Alternatively, purchase single issues of The Arrow from previous years for $9.95.


Buy 10 Issues at once (Year Long)

Or you can purchase all 10 issues for 2015-2016 (a complete year) at a discounted rate: $79.00 ($7.90/issue). Use the Add to Cart button below.

Read more about each title.

Purchase Arrow titles through our Amazon store! (affiliate link)

  • Age: 3rd-6th grades. Works well for kids who are reading fluently and are able to handwrite without struggle.

    Format: PDF files, downloadable to your computer or laptop. Permission to print also included.

  • Download a Sample Issue (James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl)

    The Arrow Guidelines that explain how to use The Arrow are included with each purchased issue, but are not available with the sample.

  • What is the Arrow?

    The Arrow is a monthly digital downloadable product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel. You may look at (and use!) a sample issue by clicking on the “Download a Sample” button on the right.

    It is the indispensable tool for Brave Writer parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context, using copywork and dictation. It is a language arts resource that equips you, the homeschooling parent, to fulfill your best intentions related to:

    • Spelling
    • Punctuation
    • Grammar
    • Literary elements
    • Quality living literature

    The practices of copywork and dictation teach your children the fundamentals of written communication. These practices naturally facilitate the development of accurate mechanics in the context of quality literature (the best words, in the best style, accurately edited).

    The Skinny

    • Each month, the Arrow features one classic novel to be read aloud to your children.
    • Each week, it features a selected passage from that novel. The passages are accompanied by notes that detail spelling, punctuation, grammar and literary style elements found in the passage. These notes are designed to make it easy to pre-teach the passage (no advanced preparation necessary). Three of the four weeks, we feature a specific grammar element taught with creative exercises.
    • Each issue also highlights a literary element of the month. These are elements like assonance, alliteration, dialog, onomatopeia, powerful verbs, rhyme and more. Examples of the element are included in the issue and are taken from poetry, other novels or the novel featured in the Arrow.
    • Each literary element is accompanied by a writing tip or exercise that gives your kids a chance to play with the element in their own writing. The goal is to help kids notice quality writing and why it is successful. Then they can practice using the element so that eventually, they will naturally incorporate it into their original writing.

    Brave Writer is unique on the market because we put such a strong emphasis on Literary Elements. These elements make writing pop. Your kids need to know how to use them in their own writing to be powerful writers (far more than they need to learn formats).

    How do I use it?

    You and your child will read the passage out loud to hear the musicality of the language, to notice the correct use of apostrophes or semi-colons, to note new vocabulary and tricky spellings, to pay attention to the grammatical structure or the special dialog punctuation. The Arrow supplies you with notes to help you notice what you might overlook in the passage. The Arrow helps you identify why the writing works and is enjoyable to read, as well as highlighting excellent uses of punctuation or alliteration or description.

    After you’ve enjoyed the passage together, your child will either copy it into a copy book attempting to reproduce it exactly, paying close attention to all of the spelling and mechanical demands of the passage (copywork), or you will read the passage to your child and he or she will write it out onto a sheet of paper while listening to you, attempting to remember how to punctuate and spell the passage correctly (dictation). Copywork/dictation done about once a week over several years does more to increase your child’s ability to punctuate and spell correctly than any other practice I’ve ever run across.

    The French swear by it and use dictation from Kindergarten all the way through lyceé (high school). I had to take dictation in college when I attended a French university! One other benefit to a steady diet of copywork and dictation is that eventually your kids will be able to take clear notes during lectures in high school and/or college. They will have developed an ear for really listening to the words and writing them quickly as well as accurately. This skill (writing accurately and quickly) is especially valuable in timed essay writing—college admissions tests as well as in-class essay exams.

    Consistent copywork/dictation practice allows you, the home educator, to use quality literature to cover the aspects of writing that you care most about without the tedium of workbook sentences isolated from the context of real writing.

    The Arrow is featured in two Brave Writer Bundles:

    Partnership Writing Bundle

    Faltering Ownership Bundle


Collections: Language Arts Programs

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