Author

Joshua Gibbs

Joshua Gibbs teaches online classes at GibbsClassical.com. He is the author of How To Be UnluckySomething They Will Not Forget, and Blasphemers. His wife is generous and his children are funny.

Joshua Gibbs Jan 17, 2022

Father: Raiden has been struggling with his grades, as you know, and there are probably some things his mother and I could do on that front, but I think there’s a bigger problem with your class.

Gibbs: What is that problem?

Father: Well, Raiden is convinced that you don’t like him.

Gibbs: I see. And why does he think that?

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Joshua Gibbs Jan 9, 2022

If you learned that Fox News was producing a five-part documentary series which described the merits of classical Christian education, what would your response be?

Choose one or more of the following options. 

A. I would have to see the entire series before I made any judgement on it. It could be helpful to classical Christian education, or it could be harmful.  

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Joshua Gibbs Jan 7, 2022

As a great lover of conversation, I am also skeptical of its ultimate value. My love of conversation is not the romantic sort, nor is conversation my Beatrice. Andre Dubus once wrote, “I need and want to give the intimacy we achieve with words. But words are complex: at times too powerful or fragile or simply wrong… And words are sometimes autonomous little demons who like to form their own parade and march away, leaving us behind.” The fact that words can sometimes be “autonomous little demons” was one of the reasons I quit social media several years ago.

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Joshua Gibbs Dec 31, 2021

While the rising popularity of classical Christian education means the average family’s classical buy-in is far lower than it was twenty years ago, there are also a few classical schools that are doubling down on their classical convictions. “If stylus and paper were good enough for Plato, they’re good enough for us,” reads the technology policy at St. Francis Classical in Pensacola, Florida.

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Joshua Gibbs Dec 21, 2021

A Charlie Brown Christmas is not like other Christmas movies. For over half a century, A Charlie Brown Christmas has been playing a game of chicken and we tune in every year to watch it win again. When will CBS finally cave and remove Linus’s recitation of Luke 2? When will the story of Christ’s birth finally be replaced with some spineless pablum about equality, teamwork, and oblique references to fashionable politics? “Surely this will be the year they cut it,” we say, folding our arms as the spotlight falls on Linus.

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Joshua Gibbs Dec 16, 2021

Summer break always feels too long to me. Christmas break never feels long enough. The school year always resumes just a day or two after New Year’s, the bleakest holiday of the year, and my mood invariably follows this bleakness. Janus is an ironic god whose second face is entirely unnecessary, for he sees the same things in the past that he sees in the future.

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Joshua Gibbs Dec 9, 2021

I teach the same books over and over and over again.

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Joshua Gibbs Nov 28, 2021

Americans are an overpraised people. The excess of praise in the average American’s life begins quite young, for not only do we give medals for twelfth place in youth soccer leagues, there are also graduation ceremonies which conclude kindergarten and sixth grade (and eighth grade), three or four levels to the school honor roll, participation ribbons, non-participation ribbons, and the sort of good old-fashioned grade inflation which now ensures every last student in this country is well above average.

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Joshua Gibbs Nov 18, 2021

Ms. Morgan assigned her students a one-thousand-word essay on Frankenstein, due at the end of the semester. In her class of twelve, one student essay was quite brilliant, another essay a little less so, half a dozen were satisfactory, and four were poor. This was the typical spread, though. The four students who had written poor essays on Frankenstein had written poor essays on Jane Eyre and Oliver Twist, as well. Ms. Morgan spent around three hours of her evening grading the poor essays. Red ink covered each page. She circled misspelled words.

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Joshua Gibbs Nov 13, 2021

Suppose you wanted to become a professional chef and so you began investigating culinary schools you might attend. You find that culinary schools are like every other sort of school, which is to say they have marketing teams, logos, taglines, advertising campaigns, and so forth. The tagline of one school is, “Good taste can be learned.” Another is, “Food is culture,” and a third claims, “From our kitchens to the finest restaurants in the world.” Because none of these taglines is particularly striking, none really registers in your memory.

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