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Kim Kautzer
Member since 06/2007
Kim Kautzer loves to help parents feel more confident about teaching writing. She is the co-author of WriteShop, honored as one of Cathy Duffy's 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum. Kim and her husband Jim began homeschooling in 1988. All three of their children are homeschool graduates, now married with families of their own. The Kautzers enjoy a passel of grandkids and their sometimes-empty nest in Southern California, where you'll find Kim hiding behind a computer screen drinking English breakfast tea.

My Mission Statement

When you combine blank paper, reluctant child, and insecure parent, you create a recipe that's probably doomed to fail. This makes writing one of the most challenging subjects homeschoolers must teach. I love to encourage and equip apprehensive parents, showing them that teaching writing is much more objective than they think, and that with the right tools at their fingertips, they can encourage and motivate their struggling writers.

My mission is to:

1. Provide parents with tools and skills to teach and evaluate writing effectively.

2. Help parents approach the writing process more objectively.

3. Develop and promote parent (and student) confidence.

4. Inspire successful writers!


Honorarium and travel expenses negotiable

Past Engagements/Seminars

"SHEM" Springfield, MO - 4/2012

"UHSE" Online Convention - 5/2011

"Schoolhouse Expo" Online Conference - 5/2011

"MidSouth Homeschool Convention" Memphis, TN - 3/2011

"MidWest Homeschool Convention" Cincinnati, OH - 3/2011

"Heart of the matter" Online Conference - 2/2011

"Schoolhouse Expo" Online Conference - 10/2010

"CHN" Ontario, CA - 8/2010

"CHEA" Pasadena, CA - 7/2010

"VHE" Modesto, CA - 7/2010

"Schoolhouse Expo" Online Conference - 5/2010

"Central Coast Home Education Conference" Santa Maria, CA - 4/2010

"Say What You Mean Convention" Online Conference - 2/2010

"CHN" Ontario, CA - 8/2009

"Valley Home Educators " Modesto, CA - 7/2009

"WHO " Puyallup, WA - 6/2009

"Say What You Mean Convention" Online Conference - 2/2009

"CHEA " Long Beach, CA - 7/2008

"VHE" Modesto, CA - 7/2007

"CHEA" Long Beach, CA - 7/2007

"TCHEN " Santa Rosa, CA - 6/2007

"CHOH" Honolulu, HI - 3/2007

"Cincinnati Homeschool Convention" Cincinnati, OH - 3/2007

"ACSI" Anaheim, CA - 11/2006

"NCHE" Winston-Salem, NC - 5/2006

"ACSI" Anaheim, CA - 11/2005

"VHE" Modesto, CA - 7/2005

"WHO" Puyallup, WA - 6/2005

"NCHE" Winston-Salem, NC - 5/2005

"NALEF" Huntsville, AL - 3/2005

"ACSI" Anaheim, CA - 11/2004

"WHO" Puyallup, WA - 6/2004

"CHN" Riverside, CA - 5/2003


College Prep: Is Writing on Track?

Is writing one of those subjects you keep starting and stopping? Does your child drag his feet, fail to finish assignments, or complain night and day? Or are you the one who has trouble following through with lesson planning or editing? For high schoolers, there’s more to planning for college than simply getting accepted, and becoming a good writer is at the top of the list! Learn how you can equip your kids by encouraging strong writing skills and good study habits that will serve them well in college.

Don’t Wait Till It’s Too Late

When it comes to subjects that are hard to teach, it seems that the faster time whizzes by, the more we drag our feet. Teaching writing can be one of those combative, energy-intensive subjects we keep putting off. Kids are lazy. They suffer from “blank paper” syndrome. Or they just plain fight us every step of the way. This workshop takes a hard look at the things that suck life from our homeschooling efforts (writing in particular) and suggests ways we can reinvest in our children’s education with purpose and conviction.

Gone Fishing: Tips and Ideas to Motivate Young Writers

What’s the secret to raising enthusiastic writers? Hook them while they’re young with fun, appealing activities that teach foundational writing skills. Kim will share engaging prewriting games, clever brainstorming ideas, and creative publishing projects that will make your K-6th graders eager to write and proud to be published!

Growing Your Child’s Writing Vocabulary

Whether you have infants, teens, or in-betweens, Kim shares dozens of ideas to help you develop, encourage, and strengthen your children’s vocabulary. In particular, discover how simple tools such as reading aloud, asking questions, and playing word games will boost your students’ ability to use words more powerfully and precisely in their writing.

How to Grade Writing with Confidence

Children see their writing as extensions of themselves: “Criticize my writing, criticize me.” How then can we offer suggestions to our kids without crushing them? Is it possible to take the subjectivity out of editing and grading? Kim not only gives practical tips and tools to edit and evaluate student writing, she demonstrates the importance of teaching kids to become self-editors as well. Kim will cover editing and grading for all ages, including self-editing, parent editing, using a grading rubric to evaluate progress, and overcoming your own fears and insecurities about giving feedback. Learn how much to say and how to say it in a way that equips your children to become better writers.

Inspiring Successful Writers, Part 1 (Grades K-6)

Your kindergartener loves to tell stories but can hardly hold a pencil. Your 9-year-old is producing a novel. And the blank page reduces your 11-year-old to tears. What’s a parent to do? Kim will encourage and equip you to teach each of your children, whether reluctant or advanced, by breaking the writing process into manageable steps. Above all, discover how to infuse teaching time with fun so that your children will find joy in writing.

Inspiring Successful Writers, Part 2 (Grades 7-12)

Parents agree—inspiring kids to write well is one of the most intimidating tasks you face. Even if it’s your weakest area, you’ll be relieved to learn that you CAN train your junior high and high schoolers to write. So come discover a fresh approach to teaching composition skills and elements of style. Learn to objectively edit and evaluate writing so you can encourage your struggling, reluctant learner while challenging the one who’s more articulate and motivated.

Teaching the Timed Essay

College classes, SAT tests…does the prospect of writing timed essays send you and your teen into a tailspin? Take heart! This workshop, geared to parents of 8th-12th graders, discusses various types of essays and gives practical suggestions for teaching this important writing skill. Gain tips on brainstorming, simple outlining, and organization of a timed essay, and learn the secret to reducing the fear factor!

Teaching Writing: The Big Picture

While homeschoolers tend to excel in so many areas, writing remains an admitted weakness. This session presents a general overview of writing for K-12, with the goal of encouraging and inspiring the insecure parent. The workshop covers the steps of the writing process; what to teach and when; the importance of editing; content, style, and mechanics; and more. It's a look at the big picture with helpful and applicable tips a parent can use right away.

Ten Stumbling Blocks to Writing

“I hate writing!” Is this the cheerful response you get when you give your kids an assignment? Then you’ll want to find out ten common stumbling blocks to writing and discover what students need in order to overcome their anxiety, fear, or lack of confidence. Learn how the steps of the writing process can actually motivate your most reluctant children, and gain tips and tools for encouraging their success.

The Lazy Student: What’s a Mom to Do?

No matter how much time you allow, why is it that your student waits till the very last minute to tackle a writing assignment? Is it procrastination . . . or just plain laziness? Either way, you can’t seem to figure out how to motivate this child! In this session, Kim helps you discover the similarities and differences between procrastination and laziness, and offers practical advice on helping your dawdler set—and meet—writing goals and deadlines.

Writing Across the Curriculum

Did you know that writing doesn’t have to be taught as a “separate subject”? This practical workshop will leave you with a wealth of ideas not just for compositions, but for projects and activities that combine writing with art, music, drama, poetry, history, science, and more. You’ll come away with suggestions for a variety of writing activities suitable for mixed ages and grades.

Writing Games

Writing games aren't just fluff! Learn the importance of using pre-writing activities and warm-ups to help your children become more productive and fluent writers. This is a hands-on workshop where you'll have a chance to practice with a number of these engaging activities. For elementary, junior high, and high school.

Writing Strategies for Special Needs Kids

It’s not just your child. Truth be told, most students struggle with writing at some level, but when a child learns with difficulty, the challenges are even greater. Poor spelling, illegible handwriting, attention and processing disorders, and physical limitations interfere with the ability to communicate on paper. Typically, the result is short, disorganized, writing that’s riddled with errors. The good news? You know your child better than anyone and care more deeply about his needs—there is much you can do! If your child has mild to moderate learning challenges, this workshop will offer practical ideas and steps you can take to instill both confidence and writing skills in your LD child.

Your Child’s Writing: Garden or Weed Patch?

Is your child’s writing dry and listless, like a neglected weed patch? Or does it take shape, flower, and bear fruit under her patient care? Writing, like gardening, requires time and attention. As Kim walks you through each step of the writing process, you’ll discover how very like a gardener each of your children is. Help them appreciate their role in the writing process as they grow their garden of words!



Break up routine or add punch and variety to writing lessons by occasionally offering StoryBuilders. Use them in addition to or instead of a daily writing activity. Each printable deck of writing prompts contains 192 character, character trait, setting, and plot cards that students can mix and match to craft their stories. StoryBuilders include instructions and ideas for using the cards with one child or a group, making StoryBuilders ideal for homeschoolers, co-ops, and classes. Available: World of People, World of Animals, World of Sports, and Christmas Mini-Builder (96 cards).

WriteShop, Inc. 2008

WriteShop I

with Debra Oldar

WriteShop I teaches 7th-10th graders the basics of descriptive, informative, and narrative writing. Editing and revising are built into the program to help develop and refine proofreading skills. The consumable workbook contains Skill Builders, word banks, detailed lesson instructions, editing checklists, and grading forms.

WriteShop, Inc. 2000

WriteShop II

with Debra Oldar

WriteShop II introduces 8th-11th graders to descriptive narration, point of view, narrative voice, persuasion, and essay writing, including timed essays. The consumable workbook contains Skill Builders, word banks, detailed lesson instructions, editing checklists, and grading forms. WriteShop I is a prerequisite.

WriteShop, Inc. 2000

Teacher's Manual for WriteShop I and II

with Debra Oldar

The WriteShop Teacher’s Manual helps parents teach writing with confidence. Containing daily lesson plans for both WriteShop I and II, the Teacher’s Manual holds parents' hands as they navigate the murky waters often associated with teaching writing. The TM offers tips for editing and grading, answer keys, student samples, and supplemental writing activities, as well as dozens of essay topics for WriteShop II assignments.

WriteShop, Inc. 2000