Thomas in the Grand Hall of Hogwarts

Nature and Imagination

Marie celebrates the natural world and the power of imagination. Here’s an example of how Marie uses nature to walk students through the writing of an expository essay. In this month’s first free excerpt, Marie uses the basic essay format she teaches in the Basic Cozy Essay Course to write an essay about the beach in front of her Cozy Beach Cottage.

The Purpose of an Essay

The Purpose of an Essay

In the Basic Cozy Essay Course, Marie distinguishes between the format of an essay and the purpose of an essay. The format of an essay is the technique of the essay, the simple building blocks with which it is made. The purpose, on the other hand, is the reason why any particular essay is being written. This reason might be to make a point, tell a story, or review a book, for instance.

Thomas on a ferry speaking about Transitive Verbs and Transit Systems.

How Transitive Verbs are like Transit Systems

This month we wanted to take another look at the difference between transitive and intransitive verbs. Marie gives us a special memory trick that no one else that I know of has used. We also have an exciting announcement about some new features and an upcoming release. Take a peek at this month’s free videos!

Isn't grammar about the rules of language? What does beauty have to do with it?

Grammar and Beauty

Just as it may seem strange at first to talk about grammar and gratitude, it may also seem strange to talk about grammar and beauty. But as Marie and Thomas explain in Lesson 14 of The Basic Cozy Grammar Course, beauty and grammar go together.

a secret about adjectives

A Secret About Adjectives

As the year draws to a close, we wanted to offer two video excerpts on adjectives. How to describe the delights of the season vividly and memorably? That’s what both of our videos address. We also have a creative writing exercise and a holiday gift to share. Read on to learn more!

Marie Rackham looking up the stairs in her cozy beach cottage.

What Are Adverbs?

This month we wanted to offer two video excerpts on adverbs and a writing activity. The topic of adverbs can sometimes seem confusing, but as Marie points out, adverbs are simply words that describe verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. And of these uses, the most important by far is describing verbs. You can see it in the word itself: ad-VERB!

Thomas sitting before the fire, with the words "a very short sentence, just a main subject and main predicate, can be very effective"

Subjects, Predicates & Spooky Tales

As the leaves start to turn our thoughts often turn to the coziness of a fire and the warmth of our homes. It’s a great time for getting back to basics. This month we wanted to share how getting back to grammatical basics and understanding main subjects and main predicates can help us in our storytelling.

Thomas Hitoshi Pruiksma, standing on Eagle Rock, ready to talk about co-ordinate conjunctions

What Are Conjunctions?

This month we wanted to share a video excerpt from Marie about conjunctions, as well as a companion video from Thomas about clauses. Both videos are set on Marie’s favorite Eagle Rock and give a sense for how the sea and the natural world around Marie’s Cozy Beach Cottage form an important part of Marie’s lessons.

Marie on the beach in front of her cozy beach cottage, ready to talk about auxiliary verbs.

How Auxiliary or Helping Verbs Help

This month we wanted to share two video excerpts about auxiliary or helping verbs, and a special announcement about Complimentary Family Sub-Accounts. Although the term might seem intimidating, as Marie points out, auxiliary verbs are simply helping verbs. They help other verbs to do their job.

What makes some writing more interesting than other writing?

What Makes Writing Interesting

One of the reasons Marie wanted to make The Basic Cozy Grammar Course was to show how grammar—the technique of speaking and writing—can enhance creativity. We wanted to start the New Year by sharing an excerpt from The Basic Cozy Grammar Course in which Marie shows how knowledge of grammar can help make our sentences more interesting.