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Ideal for 7th and 8th graders, this course covers the basics of solid sentence and paragraph construction as well as building five-paragraph essays. It covers elements of narrative, descriptive, expository and persuasive writing for a variety of subject areas. It also includes some creative writing. This course has a larger grammar and mechanics component than the high school classes, but the emphasis is on writing, not worksheets. Register online 


The focus of this class is the mastery of the fundamentals of reading poetry, fiction, and drama. Students will learn to read well and will respond to their readings in a variety of ways, including creative, expository, and analytical writing. Students will be encouraged to purchase copies of plays and novels, although many texts will be available for free online. The second semester is titled “Of Humanity and Humor.” Recommended age: 8th grade or higher. Class length: 1.5 hours. Contact Joanna Knighten for registration.

WRITING I (Online and In-person): 

Recommended for freshmen and sophomores. This course introduces young writers to the core components of good essay writing: grammar, mechanics, critical reasoning, organization, and an understanding of the different types of writing  and how they are used in different subject areas The course focuses not he expository writing and culminates in an in-depth research project. Students will also practice the skills necessary for success on the language and writing portions of the SAT, ACT, and TSI. This course is a pre-AP level course. Register online


Writing About Literature is open to all high school students without a prerequisite; however, it ideally follows Writing I. The focus is on the close reading of poetry, fiction, drama, and creative non-fiction in a historical context. Students delve into representative works of literature to determine structure, style, and theme, as well as how these reflect the beliefs and theories of the works’ time and how the work relates to our time. The students then respond to these essays in multiple ways, including the writing of reflective, analytical, and critical essays.  Register online .

WRITING II (In person and online): 

Designed for juniors and seniors who have completed Writing I, Writing II emphasizes the reasoning and writing skills necessary for writing more advanced essays and research papers. The focus for this advanced class is on argumentative writing, and therefore includes instructions and exercises in critical analysis, logic, and synthesis. It will include a major research project in the spring. This course is intended to the equivalent of an AP or Comp I level course.The Vine course may offer dual credit pending accreditation approval. Register here for online classes or through Vine Classical Hall.


 EWCB offers an independent study research intensive for high school seniors who’ve completed Writing II. This course can be treated as a one or two semester course. Students will choose a topic to study in depth using college-level resources and construct a 20+ page argumentative thesis. Participating students will meet monthly to cover general topics related to research and writing along with regular one-on-one sessions.  Time and date TBD. If interested, contact Jill Anderson.


Vine classes are held at Redeemer Presbyterian at 2111 Alexander Ave. in Central  Austin.

Online classes will be held via Zoom and Canvas on Wednesdays.

Other Services

WRITING THE COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY: Individual tutoring for those who want to make the most of their college application essays. I prefer to work with students for a minimum of six weeks prior to deadlines so that there is time to work through the entire process from brainstorming topics through multiple revisions to a final draft that represents the writer at his or her best.  $35-40 per hour (depending on location arrangements)

CURRICULUM DESIGN CONSULTING: In the last few years, the array of materials and curriculums available to homeschoolers has expanded exponentially. Whether new to homeschooling or an “old hat” looking for a new direction, I can help you identify your personal homeschooling philosophy and family educational profile and direct you toward a curriculum plan that fits your needs and goals.  $35-40 per hour (depending on location arrangements)

Courses in Rotation


Course description coming soon!   Recommended age: 9th grade or higher. Class length: 1.5 ours. Joanna Knighten will teach this course at Vines. 


The focus of this class is the close reading of poetry, fiction, drama, and non-fiction in a variety of contexts. The students respond to these texts in multiple ways, including the writing of reflective, analytical, and critical essays. All texts are available for free online, although it will be recommended that students purchase copies of plays and novels. Recommended age: 10th grade or higher. Class length: 1.5 ours. Joanna Knighten will teach this course at Vine.


Designed for 7th and 8th graders, Literatecs uses literature as a focus for exploring various kinds of essay writing. Students explore poetry, short stories, novels, and drama and delve into interpreting and analyzing literature. Students also have an opportunity to explore some creative writing. Literatecs alternates with Wordsmiths and can be taken in either order.  


To be taken in conjunction with Manna I, Writing with Ancients will expand on skills introduced in Writing I. It will focus on literary analysis and developing  essays and in-depth journals in response to  literature covers in Manna 1.We will also look at how ancient literature’s techniques and themes have influence modern authors and academic scholars.  


Designed for highs school students preparing for their upcoming independence, this highly interactive class explores various areas of personal finance. We’ll discuss a variety  of  topics including taxes, insurance, investing, and how to responsibly pursue a post-high school education. Students will respond with a variety of exploratory and practical assignments, culminating in a final project that will explore an area of personal finance that is of special interest to the student.