Author

Kate Deddens

Kate Deddens attended International Baccalaureate schools in Iran, India, and East Africa, and received a BA in the Liberal Arts from St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland and a MA in Mental Health therapy from Western Kentucky University. She married her college sweetheart and fellow St. John’s graduate, Ted, and for nearly three decades they have nurtured each other, a family, a home school, and a home-based business. They have four children and have home educated classically for over twenty years. Working as a tutor and facilitator, Kate is active in homeschooling communities and has also worked with Classical Conversations as a director and tutor, in program training and development, and as co-author of several CCMM publications such as the Classical Acts and Facts History cards. Her articles have sporadically appeared at The Imaginative Conservative, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, Teach Them Diligently, and Classical Conversations Writers Circle.

Kate Deddens Nov 11, 2019

Nautae caelum et terram vident is a humble Latin sentence. It means, “The sailors see the sky and the land.”

It’s simple, yet it involves interconnecting thoughts and the ability to organize them in a systematic, coherent manner.

This sentence is relatively complex in the knowledge and skills it requires. To translate it, you must identify the syntactical attributes of each word, define each accordingly, and assemble them in English.

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Kate Deddens Sep 27, 2019

Summer fades into autumn; one season wanes, another flourishes. This is the undulating pattern of life, as well as that of our home-centered liturgy of education since my husband and I married and began a family.

This liturgy is like a familiar hymn, one that began with the births of our children and has been accompanied by ever-more-familiar grace notes—from the ABCs, fairy tales, and chants of the multiplication tables and Latin declensions, to high school speeches, thesis papers, and graduations.

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Kate Deddens Jun 10, 2019

A common theme I encounter in conversations with other home educators each spring, and often into the summer months, concerns preparation for the upcoming year. I’ve been classically homeschooling for over twenty-five years, and the liturgy of this assessing and planning season is an integral part of my own life, too—as fundamental to it as preparing for both daily needs and important yearly celebrations like Christmas and Easter.

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Kate Deddens Apr 4, 2019

Our era is dismantling millennia of incarnated memories with increasing fervor and speed—“old” books are considered irrelevant, so much so that it can be difficult to find classics in local libraries or school curricula; monuments and artistic creations, some of which have withstood the ravages of decades, if not centuries, are toppled in the name of social progress; beautifully crafted belongings, once meaningful heirlooms, are jettisoned in favor of the newest machine-made decorating fads and end up in dusty thrift shops.

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Kate Deddens Jan 29, 2019

Most teachers would probably agree with this truth: “Interest and attention characterize the mental state of a true learner and constitute the essential basis on which the process of learning rests” (John Milton Gregory, The Seven Laws of Teaching). We want the attention of our students—their eyes focused, their ears tuned in, their minds alert. Of course, the student must be attentive. But what must the teacher be?

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Kate Deddens Jan 14, 2019

“If we will make our seasons welcome here, asking not too much of earth or heaven, then a long time after we are dead the lives our lives prepare will live here, their houses strongly placed,” writes Wendell Berry in his poem “The Vision.” These past months, seasons have been welcomed and then bidden farewell. Just recently, we greeted yet another. Thanksgiving morphed into frenetic shopping, culminating in catharsis at gift giving, then hailing in a new year with a nod of recognition at the past and a toast to the future.

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Kate Deddens Dec 17, 2018

Shortly after I ventured into social media many years ago, I discovered this poem by Emily Dickinson:

I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Are you – Nobody – too?
Then there’s a pair of us!
Don’t tell! They’d advertise – you know!

How dreary – to be – Somebody!
How public – like a Frog –
To tell one’s name – the livelong June –
To an admiring Bog!

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Kate Deddens Jul 11, 2018

Allow me to tell you The Fable of the Fearsome √2, a proud irrational number with an unsettlingly sinister story behind it.

Feel free to share this story with the little children whom you tuck in. Please note that this is, like any respectable fairytale, the stuff of legend. Furthermore, as is a storyteller’s prerogative, I’ve taken a few minor liberties—mostly with respect to vocabulary—in retelling the legend.

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Kate Deddens Apr 6, 2018

In my last article, “Can Mathematics be Parables?” I considered the fantastical realm of “imaginary” numbers. Now, wander with me across a terrain of numbers even more dazzlingly head-spinning . . . and even more hazardous, perhaps, to encounter.

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Kate Deddens Feb 6, 2018

Are stories and parables told only through words?

Perhaps some might grant that parable-like tales are also told through visual art and music. I’d like to suggest, in addition, that there are many math – and, by logical extension, science – “parables” most of us have never heard. And even if we’ve heard them, many of us have likely overlooked the radically fantastic domain they represent and reflect.

The primary reason for this, sadly, is that few of us were told them as bedtime stories (though somewhat tongue in cheek, I’m actually quite serious about this).

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