Discovering Math and Science Anew

Coming into Christian classical education 7 years ago, I was unsure how math and science fit in. I struggled for years trying to balance the need to teach math curriculum to prepare students for tests like the SAT while also allowing them time to wrestle with big ideas. After visiting the Scientific Revolution class at the Geneva School in 2019, I knew I could do more to foster wonder in my classroom.

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What Makes Math Different?

What are the features of mathematics classes at a classical and Christian school that distinguish them from math classes at other schools? Should history figure in? (If so, how can integration of history be done effectively?) What about writing or oral expression? (Ditto.) How about the classical pursuit of truth, goodness and beauty? And most importantly, how should our studies in mathematics point to the Kingdom reign of Jesus Christ? This seminar will address all of these questions and more. Several important books and You Tube videos will also be discussed as resources CCE teachers should know about and utilize.

John Mays

John D. Mays has logged 16 years teaching in high schools and colleges in a teaching career that dates back to 1985. A er receiving his BS in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M University, Mr. Mays spent 14 years in industry in engineering and engineering management. Vocationally drawn toward education, Mr. Mays completed an MEd in Secondary Education from the University of Houston in 1989, and subsequently completed 36 hours of graduate study in Physics at Texas A&M. He joined the faculty at Regents School of Austin in 1999 and completed an MLA at St. Edward’s University in 2003. Mr. Mays served as the Math-Science Department Chair at Regents School from 2001 until 2009 when he became Director of the Laser Optics Lab at Regents. He founded Novare Science and Math in 2009, and is the author of The Student Lab Report Handbook (2009), Teaching Science so that Students Learn Science (2010), and Accelerated Studies in Physics and Chemistry: A Mastery-Oriented Introductory Curriculum (2012). He continues to teach physics and mathematics at Regents School of Austin and to develop the Laser Optics Lab there.

A Christian Classical Paradigm for Math and Science

Have you ever found yourself at your desk thinking, how do I teach math and science classically when they seem so modern? In this session, we will discuss how teaching, using an intuitive balance of wonder, work, wisdom and worship allows us to recover the ancient categories for math and science like the quadrivium, natural philosophy, and simple delight in God’s creation. We will explore how employing this paradigm bridges the gap between the need for relevant contemporary application and the goal of staying true to the wisdom of the Western Christian liberal arts tradition.

Ravi jain

Ravi Jain graduated from Davidson College with a BA and interests in physics, ancient Greek, and international political economy. He worked at various churches, received an MA from Reformed Theological Seminary, and later earned a Graduate Certificate in Mathematics from the University of Central Florida. He began teaching Calculus and Physics at The Geneva School in 2003, where he has developed an integrated double-period class called “The Scienti c Revolution.” In this class the students read primary sources such as Galileo and Newton in order to recapitulate the narrative of discovery while preserving the mathematical and scienti c rigor expected of a college-level treatment. During his tenure there, he co-authored The Liberal Arts Tradition: A Philosophy of Christian Classical Education. He has given more than 100 talks and workshops throughout the country and overseas on topics related to education, mathematics, and science. He has two young boys, Judah and Xavier. A er the duties of the week have been discharged (by 8:53 Saturday night), the few remaining hours he enjoys spending with family, friends, and his wife, Kelley Anne, whom he met in Japan.

Classical 101: Teacher First, Curriculum Second: Teaching Math Effectively

Understand the critical elements of an excellent math curriculum and the practical application of those elements into your classroom. Learn the signs, solutions and strategies of students’ struggles to uncover the math potential in every student.

Ellen Yarbrough

Ellen holds a BA in education with a mathematics minor from University of Texas, San Antonio. She implemented the supplemental math program for Boerne ISD in 1992 and for the Geneva School of Boerne in 2007.