Grammar and Composition in MFW AHL:
MFW uses an adapted literature guide from SMARR guide. It was written by Robert Watson (who also wrote the poetic version of Gilgamesh that the student reads), and this adaptation is published by MFW. The lit guide is separate from the manual with MFW lesson plans that the student uses for all subjects.
The layout of the "Literature and Composition Supplement for Ancient History and Literature" is as follows:
First is a short Introduction and note to parent and student. Note to parent says to make sure you walk through everything for the argumentative essay with the student to make sure she understands. Then she can do the actual literature lessons more independently, but the argumentative paper is *almost* a stand-alone lesson before you get to the lit studies.
Lesson 1 begins the Argumentative Paper. This is where he (Watson) gives you step by step instructions for the argumentative essay. There are practice exercises so the student understands what he means by "Topic", the "Thesis Statement", and so on. He gives good examples and bad ones. He shows a diagram of the structure of the argumentative paper, explains the Introductory Paragraph, the Topic Paragraphs, supporting sentences, and so on. Oh, and at the end of each of these sections, the student writes that portion of her paper... so it's done incrementally.
And then finally, the Conclusion. At this point he gives an example of an argumentative paper well done, asking the student to find the thesis statement and other specific parts of the paper.
Then there's a chance to rewrite the essay at the end of the week, and instructions for typing it up (use 1" margins, etc.). Then there are instructions for the parent to evaluate the essay and how to grade it.
All of that is done over 5 lessons.
Lesson 6 in the lit guide begins grammar exercises, the parsing of sentences, coordination and subordination, parallelism, and other skills the student needs to write an argumentative essay. This continues through Lesson 34, and then he provides a checklist for the Argumentative Essay. We haven't done any of these lessons yet; I imagine they're scheduled later (by MFW) as she gets to doing more papers.
Then you have A Student's Companion to The Epic of Gilgamesh (by Watson). This is for The Epic of Gilgamesh: A Poetic Version also by Watson, and published by MFW. At the end of the study guide for this book is another writing assignment comparing and contrasting Gilgamesh with the Book of Job. Following that assignment is a Glossary for Gilgamesh.
Next is the study guide for Bulfinch, a writing assignment, and Glossary. (Oh, and each lit study guide consists of vocabulary exercises, recall questions, and critical thinking questions.)
Then you have the same thing for The Odyssey.
Then comes the Answer Keys for all of the lit study questions, and then last comes the Vocabulary Quizzes for each book studied. The very last thing is the answers to the Vocab Quizzes.
All of the above are contained in one spiral-bound manual produced by MFW. Again, this is a separate manual from the one the student works with for MFW lesson plans for history, Bible, and everything else.
Someone was wondering in another discussion I read asking why MFW doesn't use Writer's INC in AHL. (Because they do use Writer's INC in year 2, World History & Lit.) Well, I I don't know the answer to that question, but I did have the opportunity to sit down with a copy of Writer's INC and look through it. Their instructions are COMPLETELY different from the ones in this guide from MFW/Robert Watson. Writer's INC gives very complicated instructions for a Persuasive Essay, and then it breaks down the Persuasive Essay into different *types* of persuasive essays... one of which is an Argumentative Essay. The final example of an Argumentative Essay is much longer than the 5-paragraph essay the student does here in MFW... and the instructions in Writer's INC are more complicated than the instructions here.
So the instructions (and the assignment) in the MFW/Watson guide are JUST for a 5-paragraph argumentative essay and nothing else. No other "types" of persuasive essays... it doesn't get into all that. The focus on the argumentative essay here is specifically for the purpose of studying Gilgamesh alongside the Book of Job and other Old Testament/Ancient literature, and comparing and contrasting what man said vs. what God said (as some of the mythology of the period gives varying accounts of biblical events, so the student is learning how to discern the differences in light of the Truth). The student is learning how to make a good argument for the inerrancy of Scripture, as well as the biblical account of Creation, the Flood, and other major events.
As to grammar specifically, there's a whole section w/in the Lit Supplement on just grammar, and there are also daily grammar review questions in the Notgrass history spine. (Notgrass by itself is much lighter than MFW.) But if you have a student who's weak in grammar and maybe needs some help all the way through, as is the case with my dd, you might need to supplement this subject. My dd's doing Easy Grammar Plus, which is pretty low-key, and she's doing very well with all of her writing assignments.