What Are You Looking For? The Crossroads of Classical Education and College

By Wade Ortego, Guest Author Whether it is the numerous startups launching, charter schools clamoring to copy the model with state approval, or mainstream Christian schools seeking to boost enrollment with transitions to the classical curriculum, the classical model is on the rise. After the past two years of lockdowns, online learning, and teacher strikes, families seek something new for their child’s education. While many … Continue reading What Are You Looking For? The Crossroads of Classical Education and College

Teaching as Hospitality 

By Carrie Eben, Guest Author Hospitality might not be the first word for many to describe a posture of teaching. My first understanding of the word hospitality was limited to the act of entertaining guests, and if this is one’s only understanding of the word then a negative response is warranted—the role of the teacher is not to entertain her students. However, this is not … Continue reading Teaching as Hospitality 

On a School Day Morning

As the school year begins, I share with you a prayer I have written that may help you and your family, perhaps especially when the excitement of the new year wears off. On a School Day MorningBy Sara Osborne O God of early mornings, Drowsy children, Unwashed uniforms, Missing socks, Uneaten breakfasts, Incomplete homework, Forgotten permission slips, Late library books, Uncombed hair, And fast-brushed teeth— … Continue reading On a School Day Morning

Re-Visioning Our Writing

By Christine Norvell, Guest Author I confess. I have asked students to make revisions to their essays. In fact, I may have casually said, “You just have some light revision work,” or “This needs heavy revision.” It sounds flippant to my ears now. Trite. But those comments all beg the same question—what does it really mean to revise our writing? One of my former students … Continue reading Re-Visioning Our Writing

You Should Teach Poetry: Science Demonstrates It

By Albert Cheng, Guest Author Albert Cheng is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Education Reform in the College of Education and Health Professions at the University of Arkansas, where he teaches courses in education policy and philosophy. He is the director of the Classical Education Research Lab, where he conducts research on the effects of classical education on character formation. He is a Senior Fellow at … Continue reading You Should Teach Poetry: Science Demonstrates It

In Assigning Seniors Somber Sonnets

In his collection of poetry on loss and lament, Poet-Priest Malcolm Guite offers the following comparison of the use of a Drone in some forms of music to the experience of Loss in our lives. He says, “[“Drone” is] the word that describes that continuous repetitive sound we hear in some early forms of music, especially the Gaelic lament. The drone of the bagpipe grounds … Continue reading In Assigning Seniors Somber Sonnets

Intentional Grammatical Mistakes: Miriam Joseph and Martianus Capella on Bad Grammar (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #4)

By Jenna Carey, Guest Author We are immersed with grammatical concepts from the moment we are born to the moment we take our last breath. Our parents bombard us as babies with, “can you say da-da; can you say ma-ma,” then we grow up, leaving “da-da” and “ma-ma” behind, shouting “I love you, I’ll see you at Christmas” on the way out the door. Not … Continue reading Intentional Grammatical Mistakes: Miriam Joseph and Martianus Capella on Bad Grammar (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #4)

Fighting “The Death of Words” (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #3)

By Sara Osborne[1] As a college writing instructor, I have noticed a disturbing trend in my students’ ability to choose and use words appropriately.  These same students also appear increasingly unable to comprehend critical vocabulary used in non-fiction writing. The unfortunate result of these challenges is an inability to contribute to class discussions on important ideas and the inevitable struggle with articulating a coherent response … Continue reading Fighting “The Death of Words” (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #3)

The Death of Words, the Old Testament, and the Great Books (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #2)

In the previous post in this series, I considered how vocabulary and prior content knowledge could perhaps play a significant role in reading comprehension and understanding. In the final paragraph I wrote: Unfortunately, fewer and fewer students are taught the languages in which the Great Books are written, and not many more are taught the vocabulary they will encounter even in translations of these Great … Continue reading The Death of Words, the Old Testament, and the Great Books (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #2)

Words in Context (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #1)

I was reading an article earlier this spring[1] that talked about literacy and the importance of content knowledge and vocabulary for understanding. The article revisited a 1988 published study by Recht and Leslie, oftentimes referred to as “the baseball experiment.” In short, the article, and the study by Recht and Leslie, addressed how after reading a passage about a half-inning of baseball, “good readers” who … Continue reading Words in Context (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #1)

An Update from The Classical Thistle

Hello friends! It’s been a while since we have posted articles on here, especially with any frequency, and we wanted to reach out and give you an update. We apologize for the long silence, but we backed off for some good reasons. Why the limited content for two years? COVID-19 had a significant impact on us personally, forcing us into a heavier administrative load at … Continue reading An Update from The Classical Thistle

Little by Little

The stresses of the past calendar year have been numerous.  As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic colliding with regular responsibilities, many of us have found ourselves somewhat disoriented. Shifting priorities, schedules, and communities have forced creative personal and professional pursuits to the bottom shelf, and we’re struggling to find a way towards normalcy—much less excellence—again.  Mental, emotional, and even physical energy is in short … Continue reading Little by Little