You've heard the story of Christopher Columbus standing courageously before the religious Council of Salamanca, presenting his plan to find a new trade route to India and prove his theory that the Earth is spherical. But it simply isn't true.Read More
Filtering by Tag: Education
Whether we realize it or not, our default response is to immediately reject any opinion or claim from someone who is of an opposing moral, religious, or philosophical group, without even evaluating it first.Read More
Some people think that the job of a teacher or professor is merely to communicate and explain information. But that is not true. It is also the job of an instructor to teach students the best way to think about that information. This necessarily involves challenging students' current beliefs on the given subject.Read More
In several ways, my life is similar to Josh Wheaton, the main character and hero of the religious film God's Not Dead. But the experience I had in college is quite the opposite of that depicted in the movie.Read More
As I reflected on the nature of failure in science (and in life), I realized there is an important and meaningful perspective missing in how science is taught and valued in our culture.Read More
Our culture does not think holistically. We think in fragments, quips, and sounds bytes. As my artist friend Danny recently put it, in our culture "everything is a la carte." We don't have the patience to contextualize and integrate - to hear an argument all the way through, or see how the parts fit into a whole. That takes too much time, too much effort. And perhaps this is because many of us doubt there is even a paradigmatic "whole" in which the parts can fit.
Sadly, teenagers are often victims of this kind of mindset. Being in education, I see increasing evidence of this on a regular basis. I observe how teenagers (and adults) are lulled into a semi-vegetative state by the flashing images on their smart phone; how their humor becomes more random, pointless, and sarcastic; and how they so quickly and easily grow impatient and bored when something requires their mental focus. It seems our society is cultivating an ADD, "twitterized" generation whose interest does not reach past a flashy 140 characters.
I don't want to sound too negative here. I love technology (yes, even Twitter), and the students that I have the privilege of teaching everyday are a smart bunch of kids with great hearts. The majority of them are not as bad as my description above. But I teach in a private Christian school - one with loving supportive families, and faculty that are taking great steps to instill holistic thinking in our students. Public schools, too often, don't have that. And as a consequence, the "twitterization" is usually worse there.
Yet, even for a private Christian school, I think Chesterton Academy is ahead of the curve. Check out the video below and tell me you don't feel a little jealous of the education these kids are getting! A quick glance at their curriculum reveals they read more philosophy, literature and, yes, Chesterton! than most college students; not to mention being required a generous dose of art, theater, logic, and debate. For them, there is a deep connection between the arts and sciences.
Chesterton wrote, "The one thing that is never taught by any chance in the atmosphere of public schools is this: that there is a whole truth of things, and that in knowing it and speaking it we are happy." Judging from this video, the students of Chesterton Academy seem very happy indeed!
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