Katerina Kern Feb 28, 2022

The following dialogue is an imagined conversation with my father and does not represent my actual father's views. 

Daughter: I’ve been contemplating something for a while now and am not sure what I think I should do. I’d appreciate your advice if you have any. 

Dad: If I have any to give, it’s yours. What are you thinking about? 

Daughter: Whether I should return to keeping a diary. I’ve kept one consistently for most of my life but have allowed it to fade out in recent years. 

Dad: Why is this a question? Why wouldn’t you do it? 

Hannah Carmichael Feb 23, 2022

Do classical students need to be obsessed with architecture, poetry, paintings, and baroque composers to be truly classical learners? Doesn’t Proverbs 31:30 say that beauty is vain? 

Joshua Gibbs Feb 18, 2022

The following dialogue is adapted from a conversation I recently had with my daughter.

Camilla: My new diary arrived in the mail today.

Gibbs: Before you start this diary, I’m going to lay down a few rules for how it can be kept.

Camilla: What are the rules?

Gibbs: First, your diary will not be a secret diary. I might pick it up and read it whenever I choose. Second, the diary cannot take away from the other writing you do, especially letter writing.

Camilla: Why can’t it be a secret diary?

Dr. Matthew Bianco Feb 17, 2022

This post is a follow-up to the previous post: The Creation of Snowflakes, Part 1.

If excessive and too rapid change leads to an unlinking of generations and the severing of community and cultural institution continuity, how can that link be re-established? How can we rebuild what was destroyed by that change? What things ought we avoid in the attempt?

Joshua Gibbs Feb 15, 2022

It’s hiring season, which means that over the next four weeks, scores of teachers are going to fill out applications, travel to new schools, teach sample lessons, and answer questions about who they are and what they believe. Teaching candidates at classical Christian schools have a tendency to play it safe, which means offering sample lessons that would pass at any Christian school, classical or otherwise.

Ian Atherton Feb 14, 2022

“A man may write at any time, if he will set himself doggedly to it.” 

Samuel Johnson quipped this line into immortality when he spoke it to his biographer, Boswell. The internet, which prefers to think more about "being a writer" than "learning to write," positively crawls with that quotation and a slew of other like-minded soundbites, even while ignoring Johnson’s wiser qualifications to it. 

Andrew Kern Feb 7, 2022

The Aeneid is permeated by images of raging fire, fury, storms, and chaos. The whole epic poem foregrounds this anti-element as the unavoidable cost of Roman authority and mission. Indeed, the Roman mission is essentially to overcome chaos, especially in society.

Thus Virgil has the shadow of Aeneas' father say to him (or rather, to their descendants), in the underworld:

But Romans, don't forget that world dominion
Is your great craft: peace, and then peaceful customs;
Sparing the conquered, striking down the haughty.

Joshua Gibbs Feb 5, 2022

By now, there is little point asking teaching candidates to write a personal philosophy of education. Anyone who has spent ten minutes browsing classical school websites can cobble together an adequate series of statements about virtue, the “image of God,” and the seven liberal arts. When a teaching candidate shows up on campus to teach a sample lesson, administrators should want to know two things: whether students will listen to the fellow in question, and whether they should listen to him. There’s no point in having one quality without the other.

Dr. Matthew Bianco Feb 4, 2022

The 21st Century and 16th Century are more alike than one might think: both are times of unprecedented change. Change is a good thing, but too much of a good thing can be problematic. It can have a whirlwind of unintended consequences that do more harm than good. And that harm isn't always attributable to the change that brought it about. Looking back on change, especially from a conservationists perspective, can lead one to the sometimes dangerous habit of monocausal thinking, wherein one tries to identify that sole thing that led to the downfall of the current society.

Kara Lee Griffith Jan 31, 2022

This year was my first year teaching 8th-grade boys. C.S. Lewis wrote, “The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.” For the majority of my teaching career, I would say this rings true, but this year, I was cutting down jungles. I had a wildly curious and enthusiastic group of 8th-grade boys. Now, do not be deceived. I did not say, wildly hardworking and disciplined. But rather, curious.