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I received notice today that MCT's Advanced Writing 3 is complete:


"Academic Writing Volume 3


Advanced Academic Writing Volume 3 not only requires longer, more complex, and more deeply documented papers of students, it also provides extensive explorations of intellectually advanced attitudes and understandings that differentiate the most mature and outstanding students, teaching students the excitement of aggressive library research and the pleasure of participating in a scholarly tradition that has ennobled research for centuries."

as well as the following:

"Opus 40


We have chosen this final, 191-page, book to celebrate the completion of the curriculum because we want to focus a special light on it. This is the volume publisher, Dr. Tom Kemnitz, wanted Michael to produce before any of the writing books because he saw it as especially important to teachers and homeschooling parents: As ever, Michael ignored what his publisher wanted and produced the archive last. Had he done what his publisher wanted, he would have revised the book at the end, and Royal Fireworks would have ended up throwing away all the unsold copies of the first edition.

Opus 40 is so named because it is the fruit of forty and more years of grading student research papers in Michael's teaching career. It has the full archive of his comments, his approach to teaching students how to write formal papers, his effective method for grading student papers, and his reflections on the comments he has written. It is a sine qua non for grading academic papers, and it will prove as useful to seasoned teachers as it will to homeschoolers coping with the issues for the first time.

The core of the book is the computerized archive of grading comments, a radically important innovation capable of changing student and parent expectations of feedback on papers. It sets the bar very high – right where professionals want to see it. And it has the potential to alter students' attitudes and approaches to writing papers for those teachers who use the archive. In short, it can produce a dramatic increase in performance on both sides of the equation. The CD contains all the comments for teachers and parents to use themselves when assessing student papers.

Michael Clay Thompson began writing this language arts curriculum thirty years ago. Year after year, volume by volume, he has created at an increasingly high level. More than sixty books on grammar, vocabulary, poetics and writing have appeared. Many of them have been substantially revised as he found ways to make them better after using them for a year or two. He has never been content with a book simply because it has been published; he strives to improve every book – just as he strives to make every presentation better than the one before it."

There is not yet a Parent Manual for Advanced Writing III, but RFWP told me that the Teacher's Manual was all I needed. Also, Opus 40 is on sale for $15 through the weekend.

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I'll be starting the AAW Level 1 program shortly. Does the parent manual include the same cut-and-paste grading comments as well as detailed parental instructions for teaching academic writing? If so, then why would you also need OPUS 40? Is it mainly a stand-along product for people who don't use AAW? Since I haven't seen any of the AAW student/teacher books yet, it's hard for me to compare and figure out if OPUS 40 would be needed or just overkill & redundant. Any insights?

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