Do we even know what education truly means? And what makes education classical or not?
“No effort is permissible toward the education of children without an intelligent conception both of children and of what is meant by education.” -Charlotte Mason
As mother-educators, whether we like it or not, we have a philosophy of education that shapes our decisions in planning and in day-to-day decision-making. It behooves us, therefore, to develop that philosophy, to grow in understanding, and to draw closer to truth each year.
We want to do just that and we want to invite you to do that with us!
Eric Hall is an adjunct professor of English at Bakersfield College where he teaches writing and literature. His educational experience includes a B.A. in English from the Master’s College followed by graduate studies in theology at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, and studies in rhetoric and philosophy at Clemson University. In keeping with his diverse interests in literature, theology, and philosophy, Eric aspires to integrate learning within the humanities to develop a deeper appreciation of how God may be encountered diversely in everything that is. In his spare time, Eric likes to rock climb and read St. Thomas Aquinas.
In May, Eric will lead us through a down-to-earth and practical, yet informed and wisdom-oriented, series of 3 lectures designed to help us lay-educators understand what we’re doing so that we can do it better.
- Session 1, What is education? We will examine the nature and purpose of education. What does it mean to be educated? Why is it necessary for human beings, not just for the modern world but for all time and in all cultures? Is education part of God’s design in Creation or is it only part of a fallen world? How do our answers to these questions shape our philosophy of education, and in what ways does our philosophy of education depend upon a proper view of human nature?
- Session 2, What is classical education? We will examine the principles of “classical” education vs. modern theories of education with a special view to how classical education best fits a proper understanding of reality. Building upon the first session, we will investigate how classical models are the best answer to the problems of human sin and ignorance, and how modern educational theories systematically ignore these realities. We will also discuss in more depth modern philosophies of education, their view of humanity, and their underlying purpose, as well as how the vision of classical education might benefit the modern world.
- Session 3, What is Christian education? Finally, we will examine some basic questions regarding the relationship between faith and educational philosophy. Expanding on our discussion from sessions 1 and 2, we will look at how classical education and Christian education might be harmonious but not identical. In that case, what makes education “Christian”? Is it possible and if so, in what way? Are there specific qualities required for a Christian curriculum or a Christian educator? How does a proper Christian education help students deal with the existence of evil in the world and the rising tide of a secular, if not anti-Christian society? How can we, as educators, better integrate faith and educational practices?