Why do we memorize things? There are many reasons, but the first, I think, is that when you have something committed to memory, it belongs to you forever. It becomes a part of you. At Hózhó Academy, at 3rd grade recess, I asked a third grader casually if he knew the Declaration of Independence. At… Continue reading 3rd Graders at Hózhó Academy Recite the Declaration of Independence
Second grade at Hózhó Academy poses for a picture. Is classical education really for everyone? I'm writing to you from New Mexico, where I'm spending the day at Hózhó Academy, perhaps our most remote affiliated charter school. Hózhó is in Gallup, New Mexico, just under 3 hours outside of Albuquerque. The school, now in its… Continue reading A Visit to Hózhó Academy
American classical schools are popping up all over the country, and Florida is one of the best states to start a classical charter. A couple of weeks ago we found ourselves in Florida speaking to a crowd of over 400 about the Barney Charter School Initiative, and then we visited our affiliated schools in Florida,… Continue reading A Visit to the Pineapple Cove Classical Academies
Here at the Barney Charter School Initiative, our curriculum and instruction team is always available to talk to teachers on our affiliated schools. We work with teachers across the country on planning lessons, reviewing textbooks, and creating tests and quizzes. As we speak to classical teachers, a few questions come up again and again. What… Continue reading Behind the Scenes at Our Latest Filming Project
The first time I started thinking seriously about how to teach mathematics was when I read "A Mathematician's Lament," by Paul Lockhart. He's an impressive mathematician with real credentials, but what I like best about him is his straightforward, common sense way of talking about things. He's direct and clear, and funny. In school I… Continue reading Paul Lockhart on Teaching Math
Ivywood Classical Academy is a brand new classical charter school in Plymouth, MI affiliated with the Barney Charter School Initiative. Founded in 2019, the school serves just over 130 students in grades K-5. As part of our tour of the whole BCSI network this spring, I visited Ivywood with our curriculum and instruction team. The… Continue reading A Visit to Ivywood Classical Academy
This week we visited Atlanta Classical Academy, an affiliate of the Barney Charter School Initiative. Founded in 2014, ACA serves 680 students in grades K through 12 and has a waiting list of hundreds more. It's a rigorous classical school where students from all across Atlanta come together with talented teachers to study the liberal arts… Continue reading A Visit to Atlanta Classical Academy
It's easy to explain what classical education is when it comes to history, or literature, or Latin. Parents and teachers in classical schools know that in a history class, students are reading primary sources, and in literature, they read the great works, not excerpts of them. Classical education treats students with respect, giving them primary… Continue reading What is classical PE?
The mission of the Barney Charter School Initiative is to promote the founding of classical charter schools and excellence in their teaching and operations, to the end that public-school students may be educated in the liberal arts and sciences and receive instruction in the principles of moral character and civic virtue. Affiliated with the Barney… Continue reading How many schools are in the Barney Charter School Initiative?
Here and below, illustrations from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, by the Brothers Grimm, and illustrated by Nancy Ekholm Burkert. Every Kindergarten teacher knows that at some point in the year, when the class is reading a story together, someone is going to raise a hand and ask, "Did this really happen? Is it… Continue reading Caldecott on How Fiction Shapes the Imagination