The Enchanted Cosmos: Mathematics Among the Liberal Arts

Ravi Jain considers how we can recover for students the wonder of an enchanted cosmos that God has spoken — or perhaps sung — into being.

This session will introduce a curriculum and pedagogy for mathematics grounded in the classical Christian tradition. It will give special attention to 7th through 12th Grades (or pre-algebra through calculus), though many topics will be of interest to K-6 teachers. This classical approach, which is under active development for release through Classical Academic Press, will demonstrate the possibilities opened by thorough attention to the traditional categories of the Quadrivium, including
1) a pedagogy of puzzle, proof and play; 2) a curriculum of wonders; and 3) mathematics for the sake of wisdom and worship. Everybody will leave with a preliminary packet of new pedagogical models, a sheet of great math quotes and an overview of the classical math curriculum envisioned. Join us to consider how we can recover for students the wonder of an enchanted cosmos that God has spoken — or perhaps sung — into being.

Ravi Jain

Ravi Jain graduated from Davidson College with a bachelor’s degree and interests in physics, ancient Greek and international political economies. He worked at various churches, received a master’s degree 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, students read primary sources like Galileo and Newton in order to recapitulate the narrative of discovery while preserving the mathematical and scientific 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 over 100 talks and workshops worldwide on topics related to education, mathematics and science. He has two young boys, Judah and Xavier. After the duties of the week have been discharged — usually by 8:53 on Saturday nights — he enjoys his few remaining hours with family, friends and his wife, Kelley Anne, whom he met in Japan.

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