#47 Topical Discussion

Norms and Nobility: A Treatise on Education

Norms and Nobility: A Treatise on Education

A reissue of a classic text, Norms and Nobility is a provocative reappraisal of classical education that offers a workable program for contemporary school reform. David Hicks contends that the classical tradition promotes a spirit of inquiry that is concerned with the development of style and conscience, which makes it an effective and meaningful form of education. Dismissing notions that classical education is elitist and irrelevant, Hicks argues that the classical tradition can meet the needs of our increasingly technological society as well as serve as a feasible model for mass education.

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Ourselves

Ourselves

Ourselves, the fourth volume of Charlotte Mason's Classic Homeschooling Series, is a character curriculum book written directly to children. Book I, Self-Knowledge, is for elementary school students; Book II, Self-Direction, is for older students. Self-Knowledge discusses our human desires and appetites; the "helpers" in our minds, such as intellect, sense of beauty, imagination, and reason; the ways in which we feel and express love for others, including sympathy, kindness, generosity, gratitude, courage, loyalty, and humilty; and truth, justice, and integrity; and ends by encourages children to develop the habit of being useful. Self-Direction is an in-depth discussion of the conscience and virtues such as temperance, chastity, fortitude, and prudence; the will and self-control; and the soul and its capacities, such as prayer, thanksgiving, faith, and praise. Charlotte Mason was a late nineteenth-century British educator whose ideas were far ahead of her time. She believed that children are born persons worthy of respect, rather than blank slates, and that it was better to feed their growing minds with living literature and vital ideas and knowledge, rather than dry facts and knowledge filtered and pre-digested by the teacher. Her method of education, still used by some private schools and many homeschooling families, is gentle and flexible, especially with younger children, and includes first-hand exposure to great and noble ideas through books in each school subject, conveying wonder and arousing curiosity, and through reflection upon great art, music, and poetry; nature observation as the primary means of early science teaching; use of manipulatives and real-life application to understand mathematical concepts and learning to reason, rather than rote memorization and working endless sums; and an emphasis on character and on cultivating and maintaining good personal habits.

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The Princes in the Tower

The Princes in the Tower

Despite five centuries of investigation by historians, the sinister deaths of the boy king Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, remain two of the most fascinating murder mysteries in English history. Did Richard III really kill “the Princes in the Tower,” as is commonly believed, or was the murderer someone else entirely? Carefully examining every shred of contemporary evidence as well as dozens of modern accounts, Alison Weir reconstructs the entire chain of events leading to the double murder. We are witnesses to the rivalry, ambition, intrigue, and struggle for power that culminated in the imprisonment of the princes and the hushed-up murders that secured Richard’s claim to the throne as Richard III. A masterpiece of historical research and a riveting story of conspiracy and deception, The Princes in the Tower at last provides a solution to this age-old puzzle.

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Love Came Down at Christmas

Love Came Down at Christmas

Advent devotional on 1 Corinthians 13, reflecting on the source of authentic, divine, transforming love—Jesus Christ.

Everyone seems to say that Christmas is about love. It’s in the songs we hear as we shop for presents and in the adverts we see on TV. It’s in the cards we send and on the gift tags we write.

And Christians can agree. Christmas really is about love, because love came down at Christmas in the person of Jesus Christ.

This Advent devotional contains 24 daily readings from 1 Corinthians 13. Sinclair B Ferguson brings the rich theology of the incarnation to life with his trademark warmth and clarity. We’ll see what “love” looked like in the life of Christ and be challenged to love like him.

Each day’s reading finishes with a question for reflection and a prayer.

However you’re feeling, your heart will be refreshed as you wonder again at the truth that love came down at Christmas.

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