Talking is our most common communications modality. The first Lesson of this unit is designed to get students talking.  They move to writing in the second Lesson.

This unit walks students through a step-by-step process of—

  • Finding an excellent idea
  • Organizing the idea
  • Substantiating the idea

Starting with Narrative

A lot of teachers and parents want to know why we start the program with storytelling and fiction writing. The answer: to teach the fundamental structure of communications.

Narrative is a natural process. Writing isn’t. Listen to any group of people. Usually, they soon begin telling little narratives of something they have experienced regarding the subject at hand. The delivery is unskilled, but it is still narrative. 

Narrative is our natural communications modality. This program uses that to help students inculcate the structure of the hyperthesis. That is a coined name for the Ancient Greek structure of the enthymeme, which Aristotle said is the heart of communications.


By the time students finish this unit, they should be able to “see” two images of communication:

The Communications Barbell

This shows them the basis of communication consists of two variables (or “ideas,” for younger students) and one relationship:

It then teaches them the basis of effective communication consists of two variables, at least one of which is New (new + interesting) information:

The What Statement

We transform that image into a three-part box. This is the What Statement – what we are talking about. 

What Statement

Left-hand Variable

Verb Phrase

Right-hand Variable


had a problem with

a talking dog.

The Hyperthesis: What + Why

We then teach students the rest of the hyperthesis, a structure that tells us What we are talking about and Why it is true or important:


What Statement

Why Statement

Left-hand variable

Verb phrase

Right-hand variable




had a problem with

a talking dog