What must we then read? – Jerome on pagan learning

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Jerome is a fascinating character. He is the one who gave the Church the Vulgate, and his own classical learning and love of Latin poets & philosophers gave him the skill to do so. Amid a near-death experience, Jerome vowed never again to read a secular author. So, at first it seems that Jerome must be in the anti-classical camp. Yet, although this is his vow, it is not his advice to others. Just as the Nazarites vow not to … Read More

How Truth, Goodness, and Beauty Fit in Real Life

Have you ever walked into a conversation halfway through? Perhaps, unbeknownst to you, it was a conversation that had been going on sporadically between these friends for weeks or even months. It’s a fascinating conversation, let’s say, and one that you want to at least listen to, maybe even participate in, but you feel like an outsider because you weren’t there from the beginning and you’re trying to get up to speed – without looking like you’re as out of … Read More

Of Stories & Cities – Chrysostom on learning & the soul

posted in: classical education | 5

And we’re back with more from The Great Tradition: Classical Readings on What It Means to Be an Educated Human Being! Chrysostom was an early church father nicknamed “Golden Mouthed” for his eloquence. He received a Greek liberal arts education from a pagan, then went on to study theology under a respected teacher. He taught the Bible with a plain understanding instead of interpreting with elaborate allegories, which was the common at that time. He spent two years of his … Read More

Why Call It Classical Education?

Every once in awhile I chat with someone who wants to quibble about using the term classical education. For one reason or another, they think the label classical should be abandoned. On the one hand, I don’t care. Call it whatever you want. We can have a conversation about True Education, Real Education, a Liberal Arts Education, or Christian Education if calling it Classical Education trips you up. But regardless of the label, the discussion will be same because the … Read More

Early childhood in the early church – Chrysostom on education

posted in: classical education | 3

And we’re back with more from The Great Tradition: Classical Readings on What It Means to Be an Educated Human Being! Arranged chronologically, the book is a source of what true education has been known to be – and ideas for how to impart it – since Ancient Greeks started philosophizing about it. True education, noble and worthy training of the heart and mind, has been known by various names throughout the ages: liberal, humanist, classical. However, the aim has … Read More

Morning Time As Happy Time

What is happiness, really? That’s actually a deep philosophical question expounded upon by great minds for millennia. Too often, we think happiness is doing what we want, having no laundry to fold, or eating chocolate. And our kids think happiness is sleeping in, playing computer games, and having no chores. Guess what? We’re both wrong. If that’s your idea of happiness, make sure your goal is not to keep your kids happy. Then again, we can’t say happiness doesn’t matter. … Read More

Education in Life: Why Kids Need Chums, Church, & Chores

Yes, education is a life, but life also educates. As mother-teachers our job is much bigger than a school administrator. While he oversees curriculums and courses of study and rhythms of the school day, we do that while also overseeing meals, housework, sports, music lessons, outside activities, wardrobes – basically, every little detail. Good news: this means we have the ability to create paideia. Paideia is a Greek word and concept that means a system of broad cultural education or … Read More

Ordo amoris in real life: making kids care

The math page looms. “But I don’t want to,” the child moans. The book awaits. “But I don’t like it,” the child whines. Maybe you start off homeschooling with grand visions and high hopes. Maybe you change your approach and your style and think that will fix the bad days and the bad attitudes. It turns out that even in spite of best laid plans, principles, and practices, we’re teaching real children. They don’t always like what they should. They … Read More

All virtue is God’s virtue – Simply Convivial

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Of course this title is a play on the saying (often applied in similar discussions) that all truth is God’s truth. Therefore, we say, as Christians we can study truth no matter where we find it. In the same way, Basil the Great of Cappadocia (bishop, scholar, and teacher in the 4th century) says we can study and apply virtue wherever we find it. After all, he concurs with the ages before and after himself, the point of education is … Read More

In our education, let us plunder the Egyptians – Simply Convivial

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Returning to the great debate which is nothing new at all, but a significant part of the Great Conversation: What hath Athens to do with Jerusalem? No, Tertullian, who asked that famous question, is not featured in The Great Tradition, for the Great Tradition itself thoroughly answered his question to the satisfaction of those who moved education forward. If you’re interested in more of the historical backdrop as well as significance of the conversion of Greek philosophy into the medieval … Read More

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