Homer and Homeschooling in Ancient Greece

Recently, I have been enjoying an old book on ancient Greek education. In it, the author discusses the early education of Greek children in the ancient world. He explains that the education was based on the writings of the poets, and particularly of Homer. I believe homeschooling parents will find this helpful. “The study of the epic poets, especially of the Iliad and Odyssey, was the earliest intellectual exercise of schoolboys, and, in the case of fairly educated parents, even anticipated the learning of letters. For the latter is never spoken of as part of a mother’s or of home … Continue

Faith and Reason: The Source of Classical Education

As we begin our study of the classical liberal arts, we will first consider the philosophy behind this ancient system of learning. Ancient education grew from man’s nature and man’s respons to God’s revelation, that is, through faith and reason. We will see that modern educational philosophies are not alternatives to the ancient system but errors leading men away from sound philosophy and ultimately, true happiness. Return to Understanding Classical Catholic Education We must understand, first of all, that as neither God, truth, nor man has ever changed in nature, true education has never changed either. What has happened over … Continue

Getting Started in Classical Astronomy

Dear friends, It will be along time before any “high school” students take up the formal study of Classical Astronomy in Ptolemy’s Almagest.  In fact, few may ever do so.  It’s very difficult and will likely require the help of a tutor. As an alternative, I recommend that students study Aristotle’s Physics and then his work On the Heavens.  This work came before Ptolemy’s Almagest in history and is easier for students to get started with.  It requires the knowledge of Classical Geometry because in it, Aristotle uses Geometry to prove many of his teachings on the heavens. I’m always … Continue

Getting Started in Scholastic Philosophy

https://youtu.be/BlYYkbzNYA4   The Problem with “Modern” Catholicism No, it’s not the Second Vatican Council.  No, it’s not the “Novus Ordo” Mass.  No, it’s not scandals in the clergy.  No, it’s not the use of the English language.  No, it’s not Pope Francis. The common scapegoats attacked by Catholics are superficial reactions to imaginary controversies stirred up by social media personalities and authors for clicks and sales.   In fact, I would argue that the attempt by laymen to blame the clergy and hierarchy of the Church for the problems in the Church are one big, lazy excuse for the real problem … Continue

Getting Started with the Art of Reasoning

The most important study in the classical Catholic curriculum is, without question, the art of Reasoning.  In the Classical Liberal Arts Academy, we study all of Aristotle’s works on the subject, contained in his famous “Organon”.  I believe this first video, introducing Aristotle’s Categories, give a good introduction to the challenges of the study, and the errors of modern “Logic” books and classes.  Enjoy.   God bless your studies, William C. Michael, Headmaster Classical Liberal Arts Academy

Plato on Moral Education

It’s common to hear homeschool parents speak about their plans to “raise saints”, but the results of 40+ years of homeschooling in America suggest we’re not doing that.  We may be raising children who have higher test scores than their public school peers, and children who do well avoid scandalous sins, and children who go to college, establish stable careers and start families–but there are scarcely any religious vocations being raised, and fewer “saints”. I’ll be the first to admit that we Catholics have greatly underestimated the difficulty of the task before us.  We have not prepared for the spiritual … Continue

Alcuin (735-804 AD) and the Seven Liberal Arts

The Classical Liberal Arts Academy is the only source for the education that existed throughout Church history.  Anything else called “classical” or “Catholic” has no basis in history.  In the Academy, I have provided all of the evidence necessary to support these claims, and add more to it with this post.  The text below is taken from A.F. West’s book “Alcuin and the Rise of Christian Schools”, published in 1910, which clearly demonstrates that the seven classical liberal arts taught in the Classical Liberal Arts Academy are the only subjects ever taught in Christian schools throughout history. -William C. Michael … Continue

What is the Goal of a Classical Liberal Arts Education?

The goal of education is not to lead students to practice the skills of wise men or successful professionals, but to teach them the objective content of the arts and sciences needed to do so if and when they choose to.  In a classical liberal arts education, we avoid the errors of modern schools and homeschool programs that reach beyond the mission of schools. To get this right, let’s ask some basic questions most never ask. Understanding the Student A student is normally a child, being prepared by adults for his future life.  The child is growing and developing, gaining … Continue

The Seven Liberal Arts

Many coming into the Classical Liberal Arts Academy treat me with suspicion when I speak of teaching the seven classical liberal arts.  Throughout history, the classical liberal arts were the ONLY studies known to Catholics, and the focus of the education of every saint you can name. In fact, the Catholic Encyclopedia, published in 1907, had this wonderful entry on the seven liberal arts, which I publish in full: The Seven Liberal Arts Source:  Catholic Encylopedia, 1907 “The expression artes liberales, chiefly used during the Middle Ages, does not mean arts as we understand the word at this present day, … Continue