Category Archives: Living It

What Good Are Exams?

Over the past few years, I have grown more concerned about the negative effects of written exams on our students. In spite of our efforts to promote “learning for its own sake”, and success in generating engaging discussions ‘from time … Continue reading

Posted in For Teachers, Living It, Post-Secondary Education | 1 Comment

The Frenzy of Philosophy

For the second semester in a row, I handed out copies of “What I Learn From Exams”. Last year, it led to intense in-class discussions about what grades mean to students, and about aspects of our college’s culture that inadvertently … Continue reading

Posted in Living It, Philosophy, Reflections on the Books | 1 Comment

Unexpected Classroom Enchantment

A few weeks ago, I was not looking forward to my morning class. Family health care issues had gotten me down, and I had little energy or inspiration for Sophomore Language. The translation assignment I had given them I did … Continue reading

Posted in Classical Education, Theology, Languages, Trivium, For Teachers, Living It | Leave a comment

Esolen Describes Beautiful Schools

https://www.thecatholicthing.org/2018/11/24/unplanned-the-fresh-air-comes/ Anthony Esolen shares his delight in being a part of a small, fully intentional Catholic educational community in ways that many of us have been blessed to recognize: Yesterday as I was walking to class, two of my students, … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Living It, Post-Secondary Education, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Questions, Opinions, and the Philosophic Life I, with Quotations from Authorities

I gave a talk this week at our college (Thomas Aquinas College) which I entitled, “Questions, Opinions, and the Philosophic Life”. In it, after sharing something of my experience as a sometimes joyfully, sometimes painfully driven questioner, I tried to … Continue reading

Posted in Living It, Philosophy, Reflections on the Books | 3 Comments

Discussing Elijah

I had a wonderful discussion of Elijah’s journey to Mt. Carmel (1 Kings 19) with St. Augustine Academy students. You never know where discussions will lead, and what students will come up with, if you can get students to talk, … Continue reading

Posted in Living It, Reflections on the Books, Theology | 1 Comment

Oliver Sacks — Imitation is source of originality

Impressive people report how much insight they have found in the works of neurologist Oliver Sacks, as in this article on BrainPickings.org: Sontag’s experience, Sacks argues, reflects the common pattern in the natural cycle of creative evolution — we learn … Continue reading

Posted in Classical Education, Living It, Science, Trivium | Leave a comment

Feeding the Imagination of the Underprivileged

My work with Catholic schools has forced me to travel to an extent that I never imagined in my happily sedate teacher’s life.   I often compare today’s anonymous mode of travel, whether on land or through the air, with something … Continue reading

Posted in Classical Education, Elementary Education, For Teachers, Literature, Living It, Shakespeare | 1 Comment

Keeping Life on People’s Minds

Yesterday our pro-life Rosary group was approached by a young woman who came to ask us why we always prayed in front of the Planned Parenthood clinic.  She was indignant, but she wanted to give us a fair chance to … Continue reading

Posted in In the Public Square, Living It | Tagged | Leave a comment

“Come to me!”

Thoughts from the steps of the Dome…  If there is a lovelier, more enchanting place in the world than Notre Dame’s campus on a warm summer evening, I have yet to go there. It is one of the few places … Continue reading

Posted in Living It | 1 Comment