Fine Art for Children

It’s far easier to wax eloquent about the goals of a classical education than to put those ideas into practice.  I find this to be especially true when it comes to art education for children.  While idyllic scenes of young children sitting quietly around great masterpieces of art and somehow magically absorbing an appreciation for all things creative sounds wonderful to me, I doubt it’s … Continue reading Fine Art for Children

My Top Five Books of 2019 (Sara Osborne)

My favorite reads from 2019 look a bit different from 2018.  One of my personal goals this past year was to read more good stories, so it naturally follows that most of my favorites were fiction novels and biographies.  I also committed to a few longer reads this year, chipping away at the pages nightly and savoring good stories over time.  This was quite rewarding … Continue reading My Top Five Books of 2019 (Sara Osborne)

Walking and Talking: A Resolution

A few months ago, I reviewed a book by Philip and Carol Zaleski entitled The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings1, which details the lives of four members of the famous group.  While numerous aspects of the book make it an interesting read, I was most struck by the Zaleskis’ attention to the depth of friendship that contributed to the creative and intellectual productivity … Continue reading Walking and Talking: A Resolution

Literature and Life: Wise Words from Mole

Two large bookstores with rooms and levels sprawling upwards and outwards pulled us in like magnets to metal on a recent trip to Oxford.  I’d like to say it was just my children begging for purchases, but my husband and I were equally enchanted.  My eyes and fingertips skimmed the covers of countless classics.  After all, we were walking the streets of literary history; Narnia, … Continue reading Literature and Life: Wise Words from Mole

Getting Ready:  Resources for Reflection as the School Year Approaches

For several years, when summer’s heat begins to die down and back-to-school preparations begin, I’ve sat my children down in front of the captivating documentary On the Way to School.[1]  With popcorn bowls in hand, we watch together as a family, and then my older children write a page or two of personal reflection.  While there may be some murmuring over having a writing assignment … Continue reading Getting Ready:  Resources for Reflection as the School Year Approaches

Storing Up Treasures in the Grammar Stage

I’ve been reflecting recently on the essential work of storing up language in children.  I don’t mean merely learning individual phonics sounds or word families or even isolated vocabulary words.  No, this important exposure to words is deeper than that.  In her book, Proust and the Squid, author Maryanne Wolf highlights the significance of a child’s exposure to the language of ideas at a young … Continue reading Storing Up Treasures in the Grammar Stage

A Few More Thoughts on Classical Pedagogy: A Response to Ian Mosley and Joshua Gibbs

In response to Ian Mosely’s recent blog post, I agree that with older students, question-asking and roundtable discussion are indispensable methods for learning and important preparation for what lies ahead.  As a college writing instructor, I often lament the inability (or disinterest) of students to participate in discussion of the main ideas and key questions of a text.  They simply want me to disseminate the … Continue reading A Few More Thoughts on Classical Pedagogy: A Response to Ian Mosley and Joshua Gibbs