The MCT Language Arts Curriculum

Grammar, Vocabulary, Writing, Poetics, Practice, and Literature by Michael Clay Thompson

The MCT language arts curriculum is a comprehensive, multilevel curriculum designed to provide children with a thorough understanding of the English language. Michael is a master at welcoming children into the beauty of the language and of introducing them to its simplicity, its clarity, and its usefulness. The knowledge that he imparts is critical to enable children to speak and write well—not just for their academic success but for their success in professional life as well, no matter what they endeavor to do for a living. It will also make them better communicators in their personal lives. Children are ready to begin the curriculum once they are adept enough at reading to be able to learn from it, and the curriculum continues all the way up to a level of rigor that many students never encounter even at the university level. But what makes the MCT curriculum truly special is the enthusiasm and joy that Michael brings to it, and the children love it.

These exciting and demanding books are phenomenally successful, both as stand-alones and as part of a longer-term, progressive English language arts curriculum in gifted and talented programs and in the regular classroom. Student books and teacher manuals are available for each strand of the curriculum.

All of the books are also available as iBooks.

The overview chart below (best viewed full-screen) shows the books in each strand, and also those that comprise the packages that are available for each level. Click on the title to go directly to a book, or click on a strand at the head of the columns to see the series. There is also a helpful video that explains the curriculum. Click here to watch the video.

Michael Clay Thompson has begun work on two preliminary levels of the curriculum that will come before the first level listed in the chart below. They will be for students in Grades 1/2 and Grades 2/3 respectively. We have already published the grammar books for these levels: Poodle Knows What? (Grades 1/2) and Poodle and the Blue Mountain Monster (Grades 2/3). When more books in those levels are completed, we will add rows to the Elementary chart and fill them in as the books become available.

These exciting and demanding books are phenomenally successful, both as stand-alones and as part of a longer-term, progressive English language arts curriculum. Student books and teacher or parent manuals are available for each strand of the curriculum.

All of the books are also available as iBooks.

The overview chart below (best viewed full-screen) shows the books in each strand, and also those that comprise the packages that are available for each level. Click on the title to go directly to a book, or click on a strand at the head of the columns to see the series. There is also a helpful video that explains the curriculum. Click here to watch the video.

Michael Clay Thompson has begun work on two preliminary levels of the curriculum that will come before the first level listed in the chart below. They will be for children ages 6-8 and 7-9 respectively. We have already published the grammar books for these levels: Poodle Knows What? (ages 6-8) and Poodle and the Blue Mountain Monster (ages 7-9). When more books in those levels are completed, we will add rows to the Elementary chart and fill them in as the books become available.

Elementary

Grade Grammar Vocabulary Writing Writing Poetics Practice Literature Trilogies Literature Trilogies
3/4 Level 1 Grammar Island Grammar Island Building Language Building Language Sentence Island Sentence Island The Music of the Hemispheres The Music of the Hemispheres Practice Island Practice Island Mud Mud
4/5 Level 2 Grammar Town Grammar Town Caesar’s English I Caesar’s English I Paragraph Town Paragraph Town Building Poems Building Poems Practice Town Practice Town Alice, Peter, & Mole Alice, Peter, & Mole
5/6 Level 3 Grammar Voyage Grammar Voyage Caesar’s English II Caesar’s English II Essay Voyage Essay Voyage A World of Poetry A World of Poetry Practice Voyage Practice Voyage Search Search

Middle and Secondary

Grade Grammar Vocabulary Writing Writing Poetics Practice Literature Trilogies
6/7 Level 4 Grammar of Literature Grammar of Literature Vocabulary of Literature Vocabulary of Literature Writing of Literature Writing of Literature Poetry of Literature Poetry of Literature 4Practice for Literature 4Practice for Literature Shadow Shadow
7/8 Level 5 Magic Lens I Magic Lens I The Word Within the Word I The Word Within the Word I Academic Writing I Academic Writing I Poetry and Humanity Poetry and Humanity 4Practice I 4Practice I Time Time
8/9 Level 6 Magic Lens II Magic Lens II The Word Within the Word II The Word Within the Word II Academic Writing II Academic Writing II Poetry, Plato, Beauty Poetry, Plato, Beauty 4Practice II 4Practice II Fog Fog
9/10 Level 7 Magic Lens III Magic Lens III The Word Within the Word III The Word Within the Word III Academic Writing III Academic Writing III
Opus 40
Opus 40
Poetry, Plato, Truth Poetry, Plato, Truth 4Practice III 4Practice III American Autobiography American Autobiography

Michael Clay Thompson Curriculum Packages

Special packages are available for the MCT curriculum at each level. These make planning easier and also save money compared with buying the books separately. Click here for Homeschool Packages.School Packages.


Implementation

Michael Clay Thompson has put together sets of recommendations for how and when to introduce the parts of the curriculum, which can be helpful to parents teachers who need some guidance on how to implement the program with their child students. These recommendations, along with much more detailed lesson plans, are included in a useful booklet of information that comes with each Complete Homeschool Package.

The elementary tier of the MCT curriculum includes the first three levels, for children approximately ages 8 to 12 in approximately grades 3 to 6: the Island Level, the Town Level, and the Voyage Level. The secondary tier of the MCT curriculum includes the upper four levels, for children approximately ages 11 to 18 in approximately grades 6 to 12: the Classic Literature Level, the Lens I Level, the Lens II Level, and the Lens III Level. Level 4, the Classic Literature Level, differs from the lower three levels and the upper three levels and acts as a bridge between the two.

Click here to read the Elementary Curriculum Guide.

Click here to read the Secondary Curriculum Guide.


Digital Learning

Online courses of the MCT language arts curriculum taught by Michael Clay Thompson himself are offered through the Royal Fireworks Online Learning Community. This is a special opportunity that a few lucky students will remember for a lifetime.

iBook format: All of the MCT titles are available as iBooks, many with interactive features and/or audio of Michael speaking. There are individual iBooks for each student book, but PLEASE NOTE that each level of the MCT iBook curriculum has one Implementation Manual that replaces all of the individual teacher or parent manuals for the grammar, vocabulary, writing, poetics, and practice manual for that level. There are no individual teacher/parent manuals available. To purchase, go to the titles in the chart above or to the iTunes Store.


Staff Development Workshops

Michael Clay Thompson is an empowering and inspirational presenter. Book through us for teachers’ professional development workshops in language arts to implement the curriculum more effectively and to see improved test results in your schools. Call us at (845) 726-4444.

Cathy Duffy Review

“The five books for each level work together, and literature studies round out the language arts curriculum. Grammar books provide an understanding of the structure of language used throughout all the books. Vocabulary study prepares students to explore a wider variety of literature with understanding. Poetry books feed the imagination for writing and allow students to experience the beauty of aptly chosen words they might have just learned in their vocabulary study. And all of this prepares students to be able to express ideas in their own writing. I suspect that most parents will be inspired by these books, just as I was, since they reveal aspects of language arts that offer beauty and meaning.”  

The MCT Language Arts Curriculum is one of Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum.


Congratulations, Michael! The MCT Language Arts Curriculum has been voted the best overall language arts curriculum by the readers of Practical Homeschooling for five of the last six years (the other year the curriculum finished second)! This only confirms what we have known from the beginning: This is an outstanding curriculum, and both children and their parents learn from it and love it.


Academic Research

Studies support the MCT method of teaching. There is a Research Resource page here with ten examples of academic research.


Design and Appearance of the Royal Fireworks Language Arts Curriculum

Michael Clay Thompson not only wrote the curriculum, he designed all of the books. He understands the relationship of ideas to presentation. While this is true of every one of Michael’s books, it is especially evident in the Poetics Program, where the reader immediately is imbued with the sounds of the language from the visual presentation of the pages. Read more about the design of the books.


Interdisciplinary Studies

The Self-Evident Truth Series

Combining grammar and vocabulary, poetics and historical background, these innovative books are an addition to the language arts curriculum for grades 5 and up. They examine the most important statements of equality in American history, with student books and teacher manuals.


Language Arts PostersPosters-1sm

Participants in Michael Clay Thompson’s workshops frequently ask for copies of the images he uses to explain the workings of grammar, poetry, and other aspects of his language arts curriculum. These posters are bright and colorful and help students visualize the simplicity and beauty of important concepts of language.


Other Works By Michael Clay Thompson2180-Thinkers-175px


Michael Clay Thompson

Click here for Michael’s biography, workshops and presentations, free downloads, and videos.

Michael has a Facebook page, where he posts his thoughts and advice for the curriculum. We also encourage you to visit the Royal Fireworks Press Facebook page for the latest updates and information, including new releases.


The Royal Fireworks Press Catalog

All of Michael’s books—as well as many of our other offerings—can be found in our catalog. The latest Royal Fireworks Press Homeschool Catalog can be viewed here. Once you are viewing it, you can email it to yourself or others, share it on social media, or download it as a PDF.

All of Michael’s books—as well as many of our other offerings—can be found in our catalog. The latest Royal Fireworks Press Instructional Materials Catalog can be viewed here. Once you are viewing it, you can email it to yourself or others, share it on social media, or download it as a PDF.

Autobiography

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