What People Are Saying About Willy

As a Workshop Leader…

“Willy Wood is an outstanding presenter with a stellar reputation.  Willy has done countless workshops for educators, K-12, in a variety of school districts—inner urban, rural, and suburban districts—and in states across the nation.  These workshops are interactive, carefully constructed, and packed with pedagogy and content that support the improved instruction of classroom teachers.  Willy is especially respected for his vast knowledge of research, content, and pedagogy.  He knows the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of classroom instruction, and he is a consummate professional developer.”

-Bonnie Davis
Author, Educational Consultant

“The pegword system Willy Wood taught us in his workshop the other day worked wonders with my students.  The first class of seventh graders I tried this on know the first 20 amendments!  So cool.  By tomorrow, you can stop any seventh grader and give them a number and they can tell you what that amendment is!”

-Angelia S. Moore
High School Social Studies Teacher

“Willy Wood has made presentations to our elementary teachers on the topics of writing, spelling, and brain-compatible instructional strategies over several years.  We have found him to be knowledgeable, current, and approachable.  Willy tailored his presentations to meet our professional development needs and worked flexibly within our time constraints. He is an educator who ‘practices what he preaches’ with regard to modeling brain-friendly teaching practices.  I recommend Willy Wood without reservation!”

-Tracy Lanser
Elementary Principal

“Your presentation was great—in fact, for me, one of the highlights of the entire Learning and the Brain Conference.  I’m looking forward to your newsletter and staying connected!”

-Helen Steinberg
High School Learning Specialist

“The thing I most enjoy about Willy Wood’s workshops is that there is never a dull moment.   Willy actively engages his audience of teachers and allows them time to try on several strategies as their students would in the classroom.  The research is delivered in small chunks and accompanied by practical applications to show participants how the research can be used in the classroom to benefit their students.  Unlike other trainers, Willy does not fill teachers with theory only to leave them to develop practical classroom applications on their own.  Participants leave his workshops with activities that can be used the next day in their classrooms as well as with the inspiration to develop their own practical applications.”

-Deborah Jackson
Middle School Social Studies Teacher

“Willy Wood relates extremely well with participants in his workshops, no matter their race, gender, or age, and he is invited back time and time again to work with the same groups.  When asked which presenter really made a difference in improving their instruction, teachers will name Willy Wood.”

-Bonnie Davis
Author, Educational Consultant

“I just wanted to take a minute to let you know how much I really enjoyed your ‘Teaching That Sticks Intensive Institute’ that I took with you last summer.  If I would have known then what I know now, I could have saved myself a lot of time and money going to Harvard’s Project Zero and the Learning Brain Europe Conference.  I learned more in five days with you than I did in nine days in Manchester and Cambridge combined.  You have a way of giving teachers the latest research on learning in practical applications that can be used right away.  Your workshop was truly invaluable!  Thanks again!

-Deborah Jackson
Middle School Social Studies Teacher

“After your workshop, I couldn’t stop talking to other teachers about what I had learned.  As a result, I have been asked to facilitate a book study on Alfie Kohn’s book, Punished by Rewards.  Thank you so much for your inspiration!  About three years ago, I really found myself in a rut and my teaching reflected that, but now I feel that I am growing and learning daily.  Again thanks for the push.”

-Tammy Wilcox
Teacher for Deaf and Hearing Impaired

“I had such a good time in your session last Saturday.  I remember more from your class than any of the others, which directly proves your point.  I have used so many of your activities just in the last three days.  I used to think, ‘How am I going to fill the hours?’  Now I think, ‘Where did all the hours go?’  Every activity I do, I know now I can add music or movement or both.  My classroom is bubbly and happy.  Two children in my classroom finished a one thousand chain, lots of sitting.  When they completed it the whole class stopped and danced with them to the song ‘You Did It.’  It was a fun pause in the day.  Thanks again.”

-Wende Dawkins
Montessori School Teacher

“Mr. Wood, I wanted to thank you for a very entertaining and informative workshop this week.  I am fortunate to work in a very forward-thinking district that provides many professional development opportunities for its staff.  Most workshops I attend are somewhat disappointing, since we have the opportunities to participate in quality professional development both on our campus and off-site, and I don’t always come away thinking my time was spent in a worthwhile activity.  While your presentation repeated some strategies I have previously encountered, they were done is a fresh and engaging fashion. In addition, I gained several potential new strategies for my teaching repertoire.  My colleague and I talked on the way home, and with other faculty members when we returned to school today, about the value of your presentation.”

-Denise Wright
High School English Teacher

“I really enjoyed your presentation at the conference.  It was very energizing and really made teachers think ‘outside the box’ when it comes to movement.  My director asked me to report back about some of the sessions I attended at the conference.  Your presentation by far was the best.  I have implemented so many of your ideas already.  I have even tried to change my schedule to build in more movement before teaching small group.  The more I teach these activities and concepts to colleagues and my class, the more I am learning about the brain-movement connection.”

-Mary Edstrohm
Preschool Teacher

As a Classroom Coach…

“Willy Wood covers instructional techniques, co-operative learning, brain-based learning, and many other topics.  He is by far the best classroom coach I have met and worked with.  I highly recommend him as a trainer and as an educational consultant.  He helped me see things that I do and helped me to be more productive in the delivery of my lessons.”

-James LaVere
High School IT Teacher

“Thank you for the feedback given during your classroom coaching visit.  The observations you made were helpful and constructive.  I hope to continue growing professionally; thank you for helping me blossom into the kind of teacher I want to be!”

-Samantha Pavlovsky
High School English and French Teacher

As an Author…

“In The Rock ‘N’ Roll Classroom, Willy Wood and Rich Allen tap into what many educators have known but not been able to substantiate in their curriculum.  I have used music for warm-ups for years, but in this quality text, the authors provide the neuroscience research to support why music engages students.  What makes this book so incredibly important are the step-by-step guides to implementing music in a classroom.  New teachers need books like this, and I have eagerly recommended it to my pre-service students in our teacher prep program.  What a useful and relevant tool!”

-Barri Bumgarner
Author, College Professor

“As a High School Principal, I am always seeking creative ways for my teachers to impact student learning in positive ways.  After reviewing this book, I am convinced that music can not only benefit student learning in the 21st century classroom, but can invite students and teachers to be energized and focused on instruction.  This book will definitely be a book study option for my faculty during their weekly PLC meetings in the future.”

-Steve Knobl,
Amazon.com Review

“Teachers will rock their students’ day with The Rock & Roll Classroom. This comprehensive work not only applies to enhancing classroom instruction, but has a world of information on the topic of music as it affects us every day.”

-Beth Madison
Amazon.com Review

“This is the book I have been waiting for!  I have tried to use music in my classroom for years and have always felt like I fell short of the mark, but didn’t know how to fix it.  Now I have a better understanding of how to use music in my classroom in a fun and effective way.”

-Pamela L. Opel
Science Curriculum Specialist
Amazon.com Review

“I am happy to recommend this book to all teachers, no matter the subject or grade level. Are you looking for a classroom strategy that will motivate your students, encourage positive energy and mood, and help to insure your students are ready and able to focus? The Rock and Roll Classroom shares the “why, when, and how” to use music in your own classroom.”

-Lauren Mittermann
Social Studies teacher
Amazon.com Review

As a Program Developer and Conference Coordinator…

“Willy Wood has developed and grown a conference in mid-Missouri that hundreds of ELA teachers attend each year from all over the country.  With the biggest names in language arts, writing, digital literacy, and authors of children’s and YA books, Willy’s Write to Learn Conference planning rivals NCTE for the most relevant workshops, the most authentic sessions, and the most outstanding speakers.  Willy’s content knowledge, personable managing or people, and his awareness of what is current and necessary make him an invaluable resource in the field.  His expertise in brain-based learning, as well as his insights into what is quality classroom teaching make him an invaluable speaker and an unparalleled professional in the ELA field.”

-Barri Bumgarner
Author, College Professor

“I was tremendously impressed with the high quality that was evidenced at every turn at the conference.  Your great skill of organizing and managing an event of this scope was amazing.”

-Ruth Culham
Author, Educational Consultant

“Willy Wood was integral in establishing the basic framework for professional development that we use in the Missouri Reading Initiative, a framework which involves modeling, collaboration, and coaching of teachers.  He has worked directly with MRI trainers to make the services they provide to teachers and administrators more brain-based, and therefore more effective.  Our trainers’ understanding of how adults best learn and comprehend has been instrumental to the success of our program over the last fifteen years.”

-Rebecca Haseltine
Director, Missouri Reading Initiative