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What Teachers Say

“…knowledge…passion…outstanding resources…exceptional material…very cool!”

“My purchase arrived today, and I couldn’t be happier! A thousand thank-yous for the speedy delivery. I used The Magic Lens years ago when I was teaching, and now that I’m back in the classroom after a long hiatus, it’s the only program I want to use. It’s so much better than what the school is using, and I’m so happy to be able to use it again. I will be able to finish the entire four-level analysis well before the end of the school year, use it along with the remaining writing requirements, and feel like I sent my students into the next year with some fantastic learning under their belts. Thank you again!”

– Shannon Chastaine, English Teacher

“Mr. Thompson’s philosophy has affected my teaching practice, infiltrating every aspect of my classroom and lesson plans. He is a magnanimous mentor.”

– S. Travis Crowder, English Teacher, East Alexander Middle School, NC

“The Word Within the Word has been a playful, joyful program for my students. Their success has astounded me.”

– Jeanette Smith, Teacher, Pleasanton, CA

“I don’t know how to explain Michael Clay Thompson’s curriculum, except to say…gifted students, no matter where their gifts lie, need this. I had the honor of hearing Michael speak about his Grammar Voyage, The Magic Lens, and Practice student workbook series, and I was enthralled.”

– Carolyn K., Founder and Director of Hoagies’ Gifted Education website

“…thank you for The Word Within the Word…. I cannot express the impact this book has had on my students. I frequently meet former students who still rave about the vocabulary stems they learned in my class [and who] identify the stems as the single most influential topic that they learned….”

– Jena Dunlop, Libertyville District 70, IL

The Magic Lens was my savior for my gifted bilingual students in middle school. Thank you so much.”

– Trudy Grisham, Waukegan, IL

“Michael Thompson energizes teacher audiences with his passion for language and learning. Covering all aspects of educational reform, Mr. Thompson provides staff development that creates positive change in the classroom. His instructional strategies and programs are credible and reliable, and teachers implement them with ease. His presentations always receive superior ratings from teachers in our state.”

– Donna Darby, Consultant, South Carolina Consortium for Gifted Education, SC

“Thompson’s materials reflect his knowledge and passion to provide outstanding resources for teachers and students alike.”

– Laurie Mitchell, District TAG Specialist, Beaverton School District, OR

“Michael Thompson is an excellent presenter, and his materials are exceptional. Teachers of the gifted can certainly profit from his approach to teaching and learning, but Michael has a much greater message to deliver to all educators concerning the English language and the works of classical writers.”

– Patricia Geiger, Coordinator of Programs for the Gifted and Elementary Language Arts, Georgetown, SC

“Michael Thompson’s work with language and literature has inspired every teacher who has encountered in his writing or in person his passion for the beauty and power of language. He has a way of making the teaching experience immediate, relevant, and urgent. His caring makes us care. He is able to engage our hearts so that we may see some of the magic in language and bring it to our students. When I travel to international schools around the world, I always pack at least ten Classics in the Classroom and give them away as gifts to astounded and grateful teachers. I only wish my suitcase were larger.”

– Phyllis Aldrich, Coordinator for Gifted Education, WSWHE BOCES, Saratoga Springs, NY

“The students love The Word Within the Word. It’s amazing how they remember the roots and words from sixth grade when they are studying the ten new words every week in seventh grade. It is very cool.”

– Mary O’Malley, Sycamore School, Indianapolis, IN

“My Word Within the Word lessons were so powerful that I still get emails from parents telling me how useful that stem study was, especially now that those fourth/fifth graders are in high school! As an advanced academic resource teacher now, we just completed The Music of the Hemispheres, and it opened up a new world to the kids. [Recently] we had our “Poetry Slam and Explication” day, where the kids dressed up and presented their original poems for guests. Not only did they read their poems, but they created their own backdrop image of a PowerPoint slide similar to how your poems were written in your book. We got to learn about cropping, contrast, resizing, etc. After they read their poem, they stood up next to the slide and explicated the entire thing—meaning, meter, alliteration…you get the picture. They used the terminology like they had been using it their entire lives! We even had a few kids who completed sonnets. We were so proud of our fourth graders! They are so excited to continue their poetry study next year in fifth grade. Thanks for inspiring me to teach The Music of the Hemispheres and to bring poetry back into the classroom!”

– Mia Moen, Glen Forest Elementary, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA

“I have been teaching ninth- and tenth-grade English for over a decade, and it has not been until I adopted your technique that I was truly able to teach grammar. My colleagues and I attended your workshop in Charleston last year and learned so much! Your method has given us the confidence and knowledge to do our jobs effectively. Thank you.”

– Bridget Lee, Charleston, NC

“I just wanted you to know that your grammar and poetics programs changed me!!! I am a middle-aged English teacher, working in a charter middle school in New Mexico. I was an attorney for 25 years and have only been teaching for the past three years. I struggled mightily with grammar and how, when, and why to present it to my students. You clarified that so beautifully that I have been teaching grammar with passion for the past three days, something I never thought would happen. The poetics was wonderful as well; I do feel more comfortable in that environment, but again you clarified WHY we have to study it, and now I can focus the students on the reasons for knowing that area with passion as well as reason. Thank you so much. Clarifying moments in life are rare indeed, and I will cherish these moments.”

– Leslie Lawner, Sidney Gutierrez Middle School, Roswell, NM

“I have been using The Word Within the Word in my Honors English classes for the past three years. Some of the seniors have reported that their SAT scores have risen 100 points, and three students have perfect scores in verbal—all of which they attribute to this excellent vocabulary series. We especially like the fact that tests are cumulative; words are never learned and forgotten, and students tell me they are constantly using the roots, prefixes and suffixes to determine the meanings of unfamiliar words. We all love The Word Within the Word.

– Marsha Steiner Fox, Gifted Coordinator/Honors Instructor, Karns City High School, PA

“I praise Michael Thompson’s books at every opportunity for their availability to teachers, and for Royal Fireworks’ level of quality learning materials. For content to be enjoyed by both teachers and students is far-flung luxury today. You create books that cross the veritable abyss of hackneyed, standard-based, data-driven drivel we teachers are forced to dole out to students on a daily basis. There is a pin dot of light at the end of the long, dark tunnel. Hurrah!”

– Anne Kreutzer, teacher of 22 years’ experience, 18 of them with gifted students, Peru, IN

“I worked with sixth- to eighth-grade students using The Word Within the Word during the spring semester. Every one of them scored 100% on the vocabulary section of the ISAT. The other students who did not work with Word were not able to get the vocabulary entirely correct.”

– Jan Howard, Gifted Resource Teacher, Schaumburg School District 57, IL

“Caesar’s English is one of the best books I’ve ever used. My kids love it, and I can’t imagine teaching without it! What a great vocabulary builder!”

– Nancy Heaton, Gifted Consultant, Pekin, IL

“We purchased the two series The Word Within the Word and The Magic Lens for use in our 7-12 Gifted (Honors) English curriculum. After a very few weeks, our secondary students in particular remarked that they were ‘using their veggies,’—i.e., stems and roots—in their science, foreign language, and social studies classes. That gave validity to their lessons, and they remembered them longer. This year the word spread to the administration staff, and they voiced support for this forward-thinking interdisciplinary curriculum. Many parents also commended our staff for teaching the ‘really important things’ to their children. Thanks so much for these great tools.”

– Rooney Dively, Gifted Coordinator, Macomb Junior-Senior High School

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