Course Details:

The teacher will provide all materials. Students will need to use Google Docs.

Total Mastery in High School Writing: Excelling in Every Essay

In five months, students master all essential essays required in high school. Our unique approach combines explicit instruction, practical exercises, and personalized feedback to unleash students’ writing proficiency.

Section Options / Enroll:

This product is currently out of stock and unavailable.


πŸ’― Total Mastery in High School Writing is a comprehensive ongoing course designed to equip students with the foundational skills needed for success in high school, college, and beyond. From mastering the essentials of essay organization to honing argumentative writing, literary analysis, historical research, and crafting compelling college application essays, this course provides explicit instruction, practical exercises, and personalized feedback to empower students in every aspect of academic writing. Prepare your teen for the rigors of upper-level writing with a curriculum that goes beyond the basics and sets them on a path to confidently excel in diverse writing tasks.

πŸ•– Learners can join anytime! We will get them going!

π—–π—Ÿπ—”π—¦π—¦ 𝗦𝗑𝗔𝗣𝗦𝗛𝗒𝗧:
βœ… We start with sentence construction, putting grammar knowledge to work to write more sophisticated, mature sentences. This will separate your learner’s writing from the rest.
βœ… The instructor explicitly teaches a concept or skill through instruction, examples, and modeling. This direct teaching is critical!
βœ… Students practice the skill with teacher feedback and guidance. This is done through the chatbox.
βœ… During workshop time, students work independently on their Google Docs while still getting feedback from the instructor. This immediate feedback is proven to increase skill and understanding.

Throughout the week, the instructor gives detailed feedback and suggestions when students turn in work. The student can go back and forth with the teacher on revisions as long as they are enrolled. Students need the repetition of week-to-week practice and explicit teaching in the mini-lessons. These weeks are packed with instruction, workshop time, writing, practice, feedback, and revision, and students will churn out all types of essays. πŸ’₯


πŸš€ 𝐅𝐀𝐋𝐋 πŸπŸŽπŸπŸ’ 𝐒𝐂𝐇𝐄𝐃𝐔𝐋𝐄: This ongoing course builds throughout each unit, so check the schedule. Students can join late, but to get the full benefit of the course, learners should remain enrolled for the entire unit.

π•Œβ„•π•€π•‹ πŸ™: π”½π•†π•Œβ„•π”»π”Έπ•‹π•€π•†β„•π•Š 𝕆𝔽 π”Όπ•Šπ•Šπ”Έπ• π•Žβ„π•€π•‹π•€β„•π”Ύ
Many students know how to organize a five-paragraph essay but struggle to generate ideas that fully support their thesis. They aren’t quite sure how to develop body paragraphs that are clear, fully elaborated, and effective. Some find it impossible or difficult to write an introduction and conclusion that are more than just a few sentences. While students will certainly learn how to organize an essay, we teach skills that equip learners to embrace any writing task with confidence and skill. This happens when they are explicitly taught how to do something, followed by guidance and feedback on their independent practice. Students must understand and master these foundational skills for high school, college, and work success.

βœ” Sept 8-14–Writing genres & How to organize a 5-paragraph essay
βœ” Sept 15-21–Generate main ideas that are broad and distinct and don’t read like “mud”
& the body paragraph structure
βœ” Sept 22-28–Considering your audience; generating ideas using brainstorming, sorting, and two rules of thumb, & using Google Docs, MLA formatting, and how to draft the main idea paragraphs
βœ” Sept 29 – Oct 5–Learn four elaboration techniques, how to generate research questions, and then find answers & the most difficult component of the essay: the introduction. They learn six different techniques for hooking their readers, how to write an effective thesis statement, and how to bridge the gap between the hook and thesis statement.
βœ” Oct 6-12–Students learn how to write a concluding paragraph that leaves their reader thinking by using four different techniques & how to format an essay to follow the MLA style guide, including a Works Cited page.

π•Œβ„•π•€π•‹ 𝟚: π”Έβ„π”Ύπ•Œπ•„π”Όβ„•π•‹π”Έπ•‹π•€π•π”Ό π•Žβ„π•€π•‹π•€β„•π”Ύ: π”Έπ•Šπ•Šπ”Όβ„π•‹, β„π”Όπ”Έπ•Šπ•†β„•, & β„‚π•†π•Œβ„•π•‹π”Όβ„
πŸ₯Š Ah, the art of argument! You may think your teen is already pretty talented in this area. This may be true! But are their arguments valid and reasonable? Do they know how to acknowledge the other side of an issue, a counterclaim, and refute it? How well are their arguments presented in writing? Most high school and college writing is argument writing, and this class prepares them for college writing, including dual enrollment. Literary analysis and research papers require argument writing, and all the required writing prompts on the AP English and AP Language exams are argument writing. Students will be prepared for the rigor of upper high school and college writing after taking this course. In fact, some of our students have reported using our writing guide, which has clear and useful graphic organizers, to write their essays in their college courses.
βœ” Oct 13-19–Aspects of expository, persuasive, and argument writing as well as the effective strategies of argument. Building critical thinking and writing skills, students learn how to evaluate both sides of an issue and consider opposing points of view. They learn to counter an opposing claim.
βœ” Oct 20-Nov 2–Students begin writing their own argumentative essays while going through the writing process. They learn how to conduct online research by evaluating the credibility of a website. They also learn to delineate issues, claims, reasons, evidence, and analysis.
βœ” Nov 3-9–Fine-tuning their body paragraphs, students revise body paragraphs and learn to elaborate by using multiple strategies. They also tackle the introduction and conclusion.

π•Œβ„•π•€π•‹ πŸ›: ℙ𝔼ℕ 𝕋𝕆 ℙ𝔸ℙ𝔼ℝ: 𝕋ℍ𝔼 𝕃𝕀𝕋𝔼ℝ𝔸ℝ𝕐 π”Έβ„•π”Έπ•ƒπ•π•Šπ•€π•Š π”Όπ•Šπ•Šπ”Έπ•
In high school English classes, students read a novel or piece of literature, and they are told to write an essay. They may have a few class discussions of the literature, and they may get some help with a thesis statement, but usually, they don’t get the instruction they need. They need explicit teaching! High school students must read literature, think deeply about the essential ideas, and synthesize all of it into an essay. 😳 This is no easy task!
🧠 They have to know how to:
-do a close read of a literary text.
-understand the text
-analyze and evaluate a text
-synthesize background information with an interpretation of the text
-organize all of these ideas
-prepare evidence, analysis, counter-arguments, and rebuttals
-present the ideas in a broad, relevant context
-write a beautiful essay
Students deserve more explicit instruction and support. This is a better way. We break all of this into digestible components, so students can master the concepts, thinking, and skills. We know what they need to have success.
βœ” NOV 10-16–Using a short film, the instructor models the literary analysis paragraph. Then, building critical reading skills, students read and discuss a short story, analyzing it for the theme and the way the author developed the theme. After doing some pre-writing and thinking, they write a practice paragraph. The class reads a short story and learn the most difficult component of the essay: the introduction. They learn various techniques for hooking their readers, how to introduce their broad topic and then how to narrow it, and how to end with an effective thesis statement that stakes a claim while giving a concession.
βœ” NOV 17-23–Students learn how to develop a body paragraph. It is here they delineate evidence and analysis. They learn to integrate their evidence, which are quotes from the literature, in a way that is coherent and flows with the rest of the text.
πŸ¦ƒ π˜–π˜•π˜Œ π˜žπ˜Œπ˜Œπ˜’ π˜‰π˜™π˜Œπ˜ˆπ˜’ π˜π˜–π˜™ π˜ˆπ˜”π˜Œπ˜™π˜π˜Šπ˜ˆπ˜• π˜›π˜π˜ˆπ˜•π˜’π˜šπ˜Žπ˜π˜π˜π˜•π˜Ž
βœ” DEC 1-7–Students learn how to write a concluding paragraph that leaves their reader thinking. They mirror what they did in the introduction. In the conclusion, they will broaden their topic so that their essay has a larger significance. Then, it’s time to revise and edit the essay for word choice and sentence fluency.

πŸŽ„ π˜žπ˜π˜•π˜›π˜Œπ˜™ π˜‰π˜™π˜Œπ˜ˆπ˜’

π•Œβ„•π•€π•‹ 𝟜: π•‹β„π•€π•Š, 𝕋ℍ𝔸𝕋, & 𝕋ℍ𝔼 𝕆𝕋ℍ𝔼ℝ: 𝕋ℍ𝔼 β„π•€π•Šπ•‹π•†β„π•€β„‚π”Έπ•ƒ β„π”Όπ•Šπ”Όπ”Έβ„β„‚β„ 𝕋𝔼ℝ𝕄 ℙ𝔸ℙ𝔼ℝ
πŸ₯Έ What in the world is an argumentative research paper?!
An argumentative research paper is harder than researching a topic and presenting findings, which is typical of lower-level research essays. In this class, students learn to research an event and then develop an argument about the significance of that event, based on the facts. They learn to follow the facts and present their findings in an argumentative research essay. Students begin by learning the steps of research: how to get organized, ask research questions, search smart to find resources online, read informational texts, and take notes so that they avoid plagiarism. Then they learn to synthesize it all together into a research essay with an annotated bibliography page. This class includes workshop time, which we have found increases student success in writing the paper.
βœ” Jan 12-18:
AN INTRO TO HISTORICAL RESEARCH–Students will learn how to get organized for historical research. Students will learn the difference between primary/secondary/tertiary sources. We start with an informational text to build some background knowledge. After reading their first article, they start to ask research questions that guide their efforts.
HISTORICAL RESEARCH & NOTE TAKING–Students learn how to choose a reliable source and how to explore their topic further, answering basic questions about their topic. This includes how to search smart and how to evaluate sources for bias and reliability. They will learn reading strategies and tips on how to read their sources while taking notes. Avoiding plagiarism, they will take effective notes, cite sources, and paraphrase their information.
βœ” Jan 19-25:
Workshop Days so students have their instructor to guide them along in the hard work of research.
βœ” Jan 26 – Feb 1:
HISTORICAL CONTEXT–Students will research the important people involved with the topic, create maps, and construct a timeline. Students understand what historical context is and begin studying the historical context of their topic using accurate and appropriate references to the time period by specifying the political, economic, social, and cultural influencesβ€”events, ideas, people, places, and objects. Includes a workshop day so students have their instructor to guide them along in the hard work of research.
βœ” Feb 2-8:
DEEP RESEARCHβ€” The instructor teaches the importance of doing balanced research, where they look at all sides of an issue to understand other opinions, points of view, and controversies. For example, they will ask questions such as: who suffered? Who benefited? What about women? Children? Men? People from other racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic groups? What about people in other geographical areas, those with different values and motivations? Includes a workshop Day so students have their instructor to guide them along in the hard work of research.
βœ” Feb 9-15:
Workshop Day so students have their instructor to guide them along in the hard work of research.
ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION–This is when students begin asking and answering β€œwhy?” and β€œhow?” questions on their topic to think deeper and discover more. Students will explore the historical impact on a deeper level and write the rest of the essay.
βœ” Feb 16-22: Workshop Days so students have their instructor to guide them along in the hard work of research.
βœ” Feb 23 – Mar 1 : Students learn how to write the introduction & conclusion, and they do it in class with teacher guidance and support. Last, they learn to create a separate annotated bibliography page and how to revise and edit their entire essay. For homework, they fine-tune their essay and turn them in for final teacher feedback.

π•Œβ„•π•€π•‹ 𝟝: 𝕋ℍ𝔼 ℂ𝕆𝕃𝕃𝔼𝔾𝔼 𝔸ℙℙ𝕃𝕀ℂ𝔸𝕋𝕀𝕆ℕ π”Όπ•Šπ•Šπ”Έπ•: 𝔸 π•Žπ•†β„π•‚π•Šβ„π•†β„™ 𝕋𝕆 𝔾𝔼𝕋 𝕀𝕋 𝔻𝕆ℕ𝔼!
Students, you will learn how to research your audience and how to prepare, draft, revise, and edit an essay to get the results you want. Class time involves direct instruction with a dash of inspiration, and students will have individual workshop time with feedback from the instructor. Explicit instruction includes the following:
βœ” Mar 2-8:
Day 1–Learn what colleges and universities look for in college essays. Students begin brainstorming their essay’s topic, audience expectations, and how their strengths fit their prospective school. Students develop a topic idea to illustrate those character traits in a story that is narrow, appropriate, and engaging.
Day 2–Students learn two different methods for organizing the college essay. The instructor inspires them to think deeply about who they are and the significance of their essay’s topic. They read two sample essays and have a little Hollywood inspiration to go deeper into their topic for its significance. They meet in breakout rooms, one-on-one with the teacher for individualized help. When not meeting with the teacher, they are organizing their essays.
βœ” Mar 9-15:
Day 1–This is an “ah-ha” day! Students finally start to understand how to be transparent, authentic, and to communicate the significance of their experience. Again, they see on film how to go deeper, read a sample essay, and learn how to make their essays memorable. They meet in breakout rooms, one-on-one with the teacher for individualized help. When not meeting with the teacher, they are drafting their essays.
Day 2–Now that they have a draft, they learn how to write a conclusion that brings closure, satisfaction, and an emotional connection with their reader. When complete, they revise and edit their essays for sentence fluency. They learn some simple tricks to use in the revision process to make their sentence structure stand out from the rest. They meet in breakout rooms, one-on-one with the teacher for individualized help. When not meeting with the teacher, they write their conclusions and revise their essays.

Lesson Schedule

coming soon…

Class Introduction Video

Coming soon…

Taught From a Christian Perspective

Our mission is to equip learners’ minds and shepherd their hearts. We want them to have saving faith in our Lord Jesus Christ and then develop a biblical worldview. This means they view their world, themselves, and God in a way that aligns with what the Bible teaches. This brings great peace and understanding to the believer because we serve a good, sovereign God. This course is taught with these goals in mind. In class, we may pray, read scripture, and discuss how to view the content from a Christian perspective.

We have adoptedΒ The Master’s Seminary Doctrinal Statement.

Learners Need Explicit Instruction!

Explicit teaching is a method of instruction students desperately need! It is the opposite of a constructivist philosophy whereby students try to construct meaning themselves.


Instead of leaving students to magically figure out how to write an essay or read or do a geometry proof, we teach explicitly, which is backed by a large body of evidence, and it’s how Mrs. Lemons teaches her undergraduate and graduate teacher candidates in college to teach! We do it this way because it’s how kids learn.

Explicit instruction is “a structured, systematic, and effective methodology for teaching academic skills. It is called explicit because it is an unambiguous and direct approach to teaching that includes both instructional design and delivery procedures. Explicit instruction is characterized by a series of supports or scaffolds, whereby students are guided through the learning process with clear statements about the purpose and rationale for learning the new skill, clear explanations and demonstrations of the instructional target, and supported practice with feedback until independent mastery has been achieved.”
-Explicit Instruction: Effective and Efficient Teaching by Anita L. Archer and Charles A. Hughes.

Anita Archer trained Mrs. Lemons in workshops, and it changed her teaching. Read a little more about the research behind explicit teaching here and here.

To read more about your teaching and learning methods, read Mrs. Lemons’ blog.


The Lemons-Aid Team

Lemons-Aid teachers have a few things in common.
❀️ They love their students and value each of their unique strengths and personalities that make our classes special. Our classes can be described as fun, personal, academic, challenging, and supportive.
🀩 We work to keep learners engaged, so there is always a degree of student accountability for their attention and focus, whether that be through asking them direct questions or by using the chatbox.
πŸ’­ We know all kids can learn, but sometimes things are hard! To support students, we teach them how to develop effective thinking and learning habits that will bring them success in class and in life.
🌟 Building relationships with students so they know we care about them helps us balance the high expectations we have for them regarding their effort, work quality, and behavior. Our students are encouraged, cared for, and they achieve!

π™†π˜Όπ™π™€π™‰ π™‡π™€π™ˆπ™Šπ™‰π™Ž: English Language Arts
#High-Energy #Skilled #Experienced #Relational #Fun
Karen is the Founder of Lemons-Aid. She has a bachelor’s degree in English, a minor in Education, and a master’s degree in Education Administration from Liberty University. With a teaching certificate and a principal’s license in both Washington and Colorado, she has many years of experience teaching English Language Arts and History / Social Studies at the middle school and high school levels. Additionally, she is TESOL and TEFL certified and enjoys teaching English Language Learners from all over the world. She has worked in private and public schools at every level and is currently an affiliate faculty member at Colorado Christian University, supervising teacher candidates in their undergraduate and graduate teacher education programs. She is a teacher of teachers. A homeschool mom herself, she admits that teaching other people’s kids is easier than teaching her own teenage boys! She lives in the Denver, Colorado area where she cheers on the Broncos, Avs, and the Rockies, but her favorite athletes are her own kids who play hockey and baseball!
πŸŽ₯ Karen’s Intro Video


𝑱𝑬𝑡𝑡 𝑹𝑰𝑨𝑳𝑬: English Language Arts
#Experienced #Knowledgeable #Empowering #Patient #Rises Above the Ordinary.
As a certified English teacher, Jenn has taught in some capacity over the course of the past twenty-five years. She has taught middle school and high school English classes in both private and public school settings, tutored international ESL students online, developed and taught literature and public speaking classes for a local homeschool co-op, and homeschooled her own two children. Jenn has a bachelor’s degree in English Education. A strong believer in lifelong learning, Jenn has also taken several graduate-level courses related to teaching. Jenn enjoys spending time with her husband, Mark, and their two teenagers. She enjoys taking day trips close to where they live in upstate New York. In her spare time, Jenn enjoys singing and performing in plays. Additionally, she enjoys curling up on the sofa to read a good book. More than likely, one of her four cats will be curled up at her feet.
πŸŽ₯ Jenn’s Intro Video

π™†π™π™„π™Žπ™π™€π™‰ π™π™π™€π™€π™ˆπ˜Όπ™‰: Elementary
#Fun #Inspiring #LoveForLearning
Kristen has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education with a minor in child psychology from Liberty University. For nearly a decade, she has worked in elementary school classrooms, as a private tutor, and as an online ELL teacher. While passionate about education in general, her favorite subjects to both study and teach are reading, grammar, and writing. She and her husband are actively involved in a church where she works as a Sunday School teacher and Children’s Ministry teacher to ages 4-6. No matter where she is teaching, Kristen tries to find ways to connect with her students and to create an exciting classroom that builds a passion for education. It is her desire to not only teach a subject but also to foster a love of learning which inspires students to want to learn more even once the class is completed. Kristen lives in Virginia with her husband, daughter, and their new baby boy! In her spare time, Kristen loves to create teaching content such as interactive lesson plans, worksheets, and more! She also enjoys doing family outings and crafting.
πŸŽ₯ Kristen’s Intro Video

π™ˆπ™π™Ž. π˜Όπ™‡π™„:
#Engaging #Fun #Patient #Kind #Encouraging
Ali has a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and has worked with children over the last 11 years. She taught for 6 years in public school, 2 years in Kindergarten and 4 years in First Grade. She has worked as a reading tutor and ESL teacher online for the last 4 years; she has also tutored children in-person in reading, writing, and STEM. Ali believes that every child is a natural learner; she believes that an educator’s goal is to engage each child in the way that they learn best! She is passionate about creating a safe and FUN environment that teaches the whole child. Each time she enters a classroom, whether it is in-person or online, you can find her singing, playing games, and making learning fun. Ali lives in Missouri, near St. Louis with her husband and fur-child (an 80 lb. German Shepherd who doesn’t know how big he is). In her free time she loves reading, writing, crafts, hiking, working out, and spending time with my family.
πŸŽ₯ Ali’s Intro Video

π™†π™„π™ˆπ˜½π™€π™π™‡π™” π™‹π˜Όπ™π™„π™‰π™„π™Žπ™„: English
#Energetic #Kind #Encouraging #Authentic #Enthusiastic #Guide
Kim loves life, loves people, and loves learning! She views each student as a team member with his or her own unique talents, skills and life experience to bring to the group. She loves helping students expand their knowledge and sharpen their skills to reach their greatest potential. Kim has a Bachelor’s degree from Cairn University in secondary Education with certification in English (NY and PA) and endorsement in music. Her classroom experience has focused on English, PE and Bible education, but she has tutored in a variety of areas including ESL, special ed, math, history, science and music (piano and voice). She lives in northeast PA with her wonderful family. She has homeschooled all of her seven children. The youngest five are still in school and ensure that every day is an adventure. Kim also coaches intramural and competitive sports throughout the year. She loves music, sports, reading and taking long walks up her dirt road admiring wildflowers, listening to birds and reflecting on what she is learning in life!
πŸŽ₯ Kim’s Intro Video

Christian Teachers on Outschool

We want to serve you on Lemons-Aid! For first-time learners on Lemons-Aid, you can use the coupon code Newbie20 to get $20 off your first class.

However, if the schedule doesn’t work for you, we will happily teach you on Outschool, but we can’t talk about Jesus.

Use this referral code and get $20 off your first class on Outschool: LEMONSA2020

Christian Outschool Classes

Request a New Section

Want to see this class offered at another time? Send a request, and we’ll see what we can do!

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

High School Writing Series

This class is part of a series that prepares students to do dual enrollment college classes or are entering college. The series gets progressively more difficult and are scheduled in order. You can still jump in whenever you’d like! Completion of all of these classes, which takes about 6 months will cover all necessary high school writing! They make up a complete high school writing plan.

Total Mastery in High School Writing: Excelling in Every Essay