Writer’s Studio: Discover the Stories Inside You (4th - 7th grade)

Are you into books about sports by authors like Kwame Alexander or do you prefer spooky tales by writers like Neil Gaiman? Would you rather spend time in J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world or visit Rick Riordan’s Camp Half-Blood?  In this epic creative writing class, students will receive instruction on writing both fantasy/sci-fi and contemporary, realistic stories. The interactive class format will include improv games and writing prompts to help students develop confidence and strengthen communication skills.  Two teachers mean twice as much attention for every student and more one-on-one writing help. In this class, young writers will learn to:

  •      Plot like a pro
  •      Create memorable characters that leap off the page
  •      Bring language to life with dazzling dialogue
  •      Use the 5 senses to create awe-inspiring settings & descriptions
  •      Discover the secret to suspense

No homework is required, although writing outside of class is strongly encouraged. In addition to instructor feedback during in-class writing time, each student may submit work to receive a personal consultation & critique. The last session will be a performance party where writers can share their original stories with an audience of family and friends.


Day/Time: Tuesdays, 2:55 – 3:55pm

Class Dates: September 18 – December 4

No Class: Nov 13, Nov 20

Number of Classes: 10

Location: Room 46, La Entrada

Class Size: 8 – 15 students

Class Fee: $225

Instructor: Helen Pyne Tel: 650-868-2424 or Email: helencpyne@gmail.com  Christine Dowd Tel: 650-743-5991 or Email: cgdowd@sbcglobal.net

Please call or email instructor to report a student’s absence or late pick-up.

Las Lomitas League Contact: Jenn Hipple at jenn@hipple.net


Christine Dowd has taught English and French in both middle and high school. She’s been a mentor for young writers while working with The Society of Young Inklings. She has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is a voracious reader and writer of fantasy.  She enjoys creating new worlds filled with magical creatures.


Helen Pyne, a freelance writer and editor, has published two books in a mystery series for kids. She’s worked as a children’s book editor in NYC and been a writing instructor at La Entrada for 7 years. With an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, Helen’s taught writing workshops to students in countries as far away as Mexico and Kenya. She believes in the power of a good story to unite people.