Leisure is Essential for the Classical Educator

Talk to any teacher in February and they will, with slightly glazed eyes, tell you they are terribly behind on their grading. Talk to them at the end of May and they will gasp out a few exhausted comments on how they are ready to come up for air and recover over the summer. Teaching is hard work. Obviously. However, it ought not to be the kind of hard work that leaves us drowning: desperately swimming against an impossible current of busy work. We lie to our students about the nature of learning if we are constantly wading through piles of papers or buried in our laptops typing up lesson plans, researching discussion questions, and escaping to the adult world through our email, social media, and news outlets. Instead, we should be reading books, engaging in conversations, and then grading and lesson-planning. Ordering our workday around principles of joyful work and appropriate rest will yield a more honest teacher, better instruction, and healthier students.

Amanda Patchen

Amanda Patchin is an instructor at The Ambrose School, where she teaches Medieval History, Literature, and Philosophy to high school juniors. She reads a bit more than average and loves nothing more than conversation about a good book. Her love of the written word occasionally produces a poem or an article and her love of food often produces dinner.

Thriving Not Surviving: A Real Life Plan for Teacher Development

Teachers who thrive as individuals and as professionals inspire students. So, build your teacher development program around the objective of developing teachers within their specific needs for improvement. Most teachers find themselves often in a ‘just survive’ mode that is not healthy for themselves, their families, nor their students. You must demonstrate enough care and investment in them in order for them to trust you with a spirit of vulnerability. Then, give them specific, practical, time-based goals of personal growth that reflect your school’s mission. And, the image of God is more likely to emerge from each lovely teacher who wakes up every day to invest in children, and to impact eternity.

Rod Gilbert

Rod Gilbert is the Headmaster for Regents School of Austin. He assumed this position three years ago a er serving as the Head of Upper School for four years. Prior to his career at Regents, Rod was a founding member of Trinity Academy of Raleigh, NC, and served as the Assistant Headmaster.

Discovering, Recovering, Uncovering: The Lost Wisdom behind the Lost Tools

For all modern people, it’s tempting – even for educators with the best motivations- to reduce the classical approach to a technique in service of ends quite different from those that were served in the great tradition. This seminar will encourage a deeper reorientation of our goals by highlighting some books that describe the telos of classical education.

Ken Myers

Ken Myers is the host and producer of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal, a bimonthly audio magazine that examines issues in contemporary culture from a framework shaped by historic Christian thought and practice. He was formerly the editor of This World, the quarterly predecessor to First Things. Prior to his tenure at This World, he was executive editor of Eternity, the Evangelical monthly magazine. For eight years, he was a producer and editor for National Public Radio, working for much of that time as arts and humanities editor for the two news programs, Morning Edition and All Things Considered. A graduate of the University of Maryland and of Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, Mr. Myers is the author of All God’s Children and Blue Suede Shoes: Christians and Popular Culture (Crossway Books, 1989). He has wri en for numerous periodicals, including The Wilson Quarterly, Discipleship Journal, and First Things. He writes a regular column in Touchstone magazine called “From Heavenly Harmony,” has served on several evaluation panels for the National Endowment for the Arts, and lectures frequently at colleges, universities, seminaries, and churches around the country.

Tools for Teacher Evaluation

Performance evaluation is usually an uncomfortable experience for educators. But, when educators help design a process that drives improvement and leads to better learning, everyone benefits. This session describes such a process, and provides examples of survey instruments and data summaries that form the basis for positive formative assessment of teaching and learning.

Robert Littlejohn

Dr. Littlejohn is Head of School at Trinity Academy of Raleigh, North Carolina. As a Ph.D Biologist, he has authored two college biology laboratory texts and has published 26 reports of original research in the fields of Ecology, Plant Physiology, Biochemistry and Science Educational Theory. In 2006, he coauthored Wisdom and Eloquence: a Christian Paradigm for Classical Learning, published by Crossway Books, Chicago. His career spans 26 years in K-12 and higher education, during which he has served in a variety of teaching and administrative capacities, including Academic Vice President for a liberal arts college and Director for a consortium of ten colleges and universities. He was founding headmaster for New Covenant Schools in Virginia, founding executive director for the society for Classical Learning and a founding board member for the American School of Lyon, France. He is a certified facilitator for Appreciative Inquiry, an AQIP reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and a Consultant to Colleges and schools across the nation.

Effective Teaching

Every teacher wants students to learn. Attend this workshop to learn how to present knowledge in the way it produces learning. Learn to teach with the grain of the child to reach your classroom goals.

Lynn Gilpin

Lynn Gilpin is the Lower School Principal at Veritas Christian Academy in Fletcher, North Carolina. She was a Founding Board Member for 10 years. Mrs. Gilpin also served as the Lower School Dean of Faculty for 12 years and has traveled the U.S. training teachers in the classical methodology. She has been presenting at the SCL Conferences for the past 13 years. Mrs. Gilpin is also certi ed in Orton- Gillingham, and regularly tutors students in OG in addition to her duties as principal. She has also done training in Linda-Mood Bell and holds a degree in Special Education. She has 3 wonderful boys who all attended Veritas and appreciate their classical and Christian education. She lives in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina with her husband and one son.

Behavior Health for Educators

Overview of major concepts and techniques in the psychophysiology of wellness under pressure.

Walker Buckalew

Executive Consultant, Independent School Management

In additon to his role as a consultant with ISM, a firm serving more than 4,000 school clients, Dr. Buckalew is also the author of eight non-fiction books and three Christian fiction books.

Five Classical Steps to Improve Every Teacher’s Performance

Good teachers want to be effective, and administrators want to be able to provide concrete advice that helps them achieve their goals. This workshop looks at five characteristics of classical teaching and learning that can be applied to any Christian school classroom. Students will learn more, and you’ll have more fun teaching them!

Chuck Evans

Chuck Evans is a co-founder of both SCL and the Council on Educational Standards and Accountability (CESA). Over the course of more than 15 years, he has become an expert at hanging around SCL conferences without actually working or helping out in any way. Despite that, Chuck and his colleagues do work with and help classical schools to think through their impact on their communities and markets, to design strategies for growth, and to imagine creative ways to apply a classical Christian mission in relationships with students and families.