Tim McIntosh Sep 15, 2016

When friends ask me what my favorite novel is, I tell them, "That's easy. Crime and Punishment. Or Anna Karenina. Depending upon which one I read last."

As a teacher at a great books college, my job demands much reading of literature. It is a task I happily embrace. Accordingly, I have read many of the classics of the Western canon. And, after all that reading I am convinced that for power of psychology, for characterization, and for theatrical tension, Dostoevsky and Tolstoy count among the greatest writers in the canon. 

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Rachel McClure Sep 7, 2016

Teaching: a job where you must constantly be “on.” Yet not just “on,” always one step ahead, because if you’re not, you lose control of the class and find the drum of voices getting steadily louder, and the calm of focus evaporating. A job where you must always be excited about grammar, composition, math, handwriting, spelling, and everything else—because the kids watch you and everything you do. A job where you have to smile and be pleasant even when you’re physically and emotionally exhausted and what you really want to do is sit on the couch with a book, afghan, and cup of tea. 

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Joshua Leland Aug 25, 2016

My sister-in-law and a good friend of mine are both getting ready to begin teaching for the first time, and in talking with them recently I was reminded of the first few weeks of my own teaching career. I was terrified.

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Lindsey Brigham Knott Aug 23, 2016

Some musical works, especially classical ones, resemble Mr. Darcy at the Netherfield Ball: they require a formal introduction for proper acquaintance (and woe betide the Mr. Collins who thinks otherwise). But other works, like other people, welcome strangers. It is sometimes possible to love a person before you learn his name and to understand a work of music before comprehending its composition. Such is the case with Bedrich Smetana’s “The Moldau.”

Take a listen.  

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Heidi White Aug 18, 2016

This spring, Brian Phillips triggered my midlife crisis.  At the Rocky Mountain Regional Conference, he gave a talk in which he made a casual statement that led to a poignant discovery. “In the Iliad, Achilles seeks glory, while in the Odyssey, Odysseus desires home,” he announced. 

Nothing new there.

“But really,” he continued, “They were both seeking the same thing.” 

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Brandon Spun Aug 11, 2016

When the Hairy Hooligans are ambushed aboard their ship, their captors announce a plan to execute Stoick, the head of the viking tribe, as well as his heir. It is at this moment in Cressida Cowell’s How to be a Pirate (from her How to Train a Dragon Series) that Hiccup steps forth in heroic loyalty to his father. Moments earlier, the legitimacy of his heritage was being disputed, but in the crisis, the true heir alone shines forth

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Bret Saunders Aug 5, 2016

As classical Christian educators, we know why our students should read Homer. But that doesn’t tell us what exactly they should take away from these profound myths, these stories both classical and pagan. What caveats, frameworks, and hermeneutical habits should we model for them? In particular, how should they be guided in assessing the character of pagan heroes? Odysseus as Christ-figure offers a useful context for pondering these questions. 

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Lindsey Brigham Knott Jul 25, 2016

New sounds rang through the old cathedrals: Lutheran chorales and Reformed Psalm-singing proclaimed the Protestants’ conviction that congregations should participate in worship as fully as possible. Yet simultaneously, composers faithful to Rome labored to craft gloriously intricate music through which they hoped to offer praise worthy of a God of infinite majesty. Of these latter, none was more famous, nor perhaps more masterful, than Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina. 

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Greg Wilbur Jul 11, 2016

The idea of an interconnected and structured universe finds its root in the creative order of an Almighty God who made the heavens and the earth.

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Christine Perrin Jun 30, 2016

When I met the soundtrack of Hamilton, the massively popular Broadway musical that has taken the world by storm, I was astonished. I listened to borrowed CD’s on my commute to work at Messiah College where I teach academic writing, poetry, and creative writing. Never mind what the day held, I hungrily attended to these songs about the life of founding father Alexander Hamilton, waiting to hear what would happen next in the story and often having to force myself out of the car after the quarter hour.

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