We Need Stories Old Western Culture Once upon a time there was a horse that couldn’t be tamed. He was young and strong, nervous and rangy. King Philip wanted to ride him in battle, and every man of the king’s army looked on that beautiful horse with admiration. But man after man could not tame him; with wild, frantic energy he started and bucked at every battle-hardened solder that tried to get close to him. After many men had failed they were about to declare him untamable and send him back into the wild, when the king’s young son stepped forward … Continue Reading “We Need Stories”
We’ve Been Schooled: A Short Film on American Education By Scott Postma, of Kepler Education
I recently read an article about why readers, scientifically speaking, are the best people to fall in love with. I agree! I married a woman who loves to read, and loves to learn! She read all the right books while growing up! (Incidentally, she took Wes Callihan’s Great Books courses online in high school). The article points to several benefits that reading will bring a reader. It enables them to speak to someone in a meaningful way. It allows a person to understand other people; it teaches the art of empathy. And it gives wisdom that years of actual experience … Continue Reading “Why Readers, Scientifically, Are The Best People To Fall In Love With”
Dear friends of Roman Roads Press, For the last five years we have offered classes through Roman Roads Classroom, a small online live-class service where we used the flipped-classroom model of lecture + live recitation. Many of you used this service and expressed how much you loved the model. Additionally, teachers loved this model. That is why last year we founded Kepler Education, building on the foundation so many of you loved with Roman Roads Classroom. What has changed? The biggest change in the transition from Roman Roads Classroom to Kepler Education is the quantity of teachers who have joined … Continue Reading “Introducing Kepler Education”
Old Western Culture is a great books curriculum with a distinctly Christian “great books” reading list. It includes all the famous favorites you’ll recognize from series like the Britannica Great Books of the Western World, but also includes books that are often left out of modern editions for various reasons, most often because they are from the “Age of Faith.” We include more works from the early Church Fathers, Medieval period, and the Reformation. These are deeply influential and formative books on Western civilization, and worthy of inclusion in great books series. These books are part of our Christian and cultural inheritance, and … Continue Reading “The Old Western Culture Great Books List”
As Christians recover classical Christian education, they are unearthing old treasures, once the possession of every educated man. Some of these treasures are words and descriptions–terms like “Trivium” and “Quadrivium,” “paideia,” and “liberal arts.” Of all these terms, “liberal arts” lays at the heart of what classical education is all about. So what did our forefathers mean by “liberal arts”? “Liberal” The word liberal has nothing to do with our modern use of the word in politics and culture. Liberal means “free,” and historically described the kind of education expected of a freeman–especially one in a position of leadership, like … Continue Reading “What do we mean by “Liberal Arts”?”
Christians need to learn the tools of Rhetoric both to persuade and to gain wisdom and understanding of our times. “Since, then, the faculty of eloquence is available for both sides, and is of very great service in the enforcing either of wrong or right, why do not good men study to engage it on the side of truth, when bad men use it to obtain the triumph of wicked and worthless causes, and to further injustice and error?” —Augustine, On Christian Teaching (quoted in Fitting Words: Classical Rhetoric for the Christian Student by James B Nance).
In this excerpt from The Histories, part of the Old Western Culture series, a Great Books video course, Wes Callihan shows how the reactions that the Athenians had to a defeat is very similar to other reactions of democracies throughout history, and specifically similar to the reaction of the United States to the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11th, 2001. Thucydides wants us to make these parallels as he explains at the beginning of “The History of the Peloponnesian War.” YouTube version here.
I recently had the pleasure of listening to Andrew Pudewa, the director of the Institute for Excellence in Writing and a father of seven, speak at an education conference on the importance of reading aloud to your children. As he spoke, I recalled with delight the many hours I spent reading to my four children before they went to sleep. My eldest is about seven years older than the youngest. I would first read the Bible, making sure I at least turned the page every night. We read it all the way through, Genesis to Revelation, over and over again (once we finished … Continue Reading “74 Books I Read Aloud to my Children”
Harvard University adopted the following words, based on their mission statement, as part of their “Rules and Precepts” in 1646: Let every Student be plainly instructed, and earnestly pressed to consider well, the maine end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life (John 17:3) and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and Learning. And seeing the Lord only giveth wisedome, Let every one seriously set himself by prayer in secret to seeke it of him (Prov. 2:3). History and Geography portion of … Continue Reading “Could your child enter Harvard in 1869?”