5 Ways Summer Can Serve Your Struggling Students

As the final days of the school year approach, teachers and students alike are eager for the long, lazy days of summer.  Summer break does offer a less cluttered calendar for increased rest and play, but it also offers unique opportunities to help meet the needs of struggling students.  Consider these five ways summer can serve struggling students in the months ahead. Remediation End-of-school assessments … Continue reading 5 Ways Summer Can Serve Your Struggling Students

Classical and Christian: Abraham Kuyper on the Nature of Genuine Study

The classical renewal has been prompted—at least in part—by evident student skill and knowledge deficits, virtue-less environments for learning, disordered curricula, and postmodern pedagogies.  However, a true classical education aims to do more than simply plug the holes of a failing public education. If the purpose of genuine study is to know, analyze, and articulate what is True, Good, and Beautiful, the truest form of … Continue reading Classical and Christian: Abraham Kuyper on the Nature of Genuine Study

Writing & Waiting: An Advent Allegory

Following fifteen weeks of instruction, my students sat working on their pinnacle assignment for the semester—a deductive essay on the meaning of words.  I spent the last class period before their essay submission giving them one more tool to check for the connection and flow of their ideas, fielding questions about word choice, and shepherding them through the process of final edits.  We had labored … Continue reading Writing & Waiting: An Advent Allegory

When the Struggle is Worthwhile

My excitement rose with the sun.  Despite the previous night’s rain—which had served to muddy many of the famed fisheries of Paradise Valley—we were headed for the clear water of DuPuy’s Spring Creek, arguably one of the finest trout waters in Western Montana.  Our guide had warned us that DuPuy’s was a more technical fishery, and some days, expert fishermen leave the creek empty-handed.  Still, … Continue reading When the Struggle is Worthwhile

On a School Day Morning

As the school year begins, I share with you a prayer I have written that may help you and your family, perhaps especially when the excitement of the new year wears off. On a School Day MorningBy Sara Osborne O God of early mornings, Drowsy children, Unwashed uniforms, Missing socks, Uneaten breakfasts, Incomplete homework, Forgotten permission slips, Late library books, Uncombed hair, And fast-brushed teeth— … Continue reading On a School Day Morning

Fighting “The Death of Words” (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #3)

By Sara Osborne[1] As a college writing instructor, I have noticed a disturbing trend in my students’ ability to choose and use words appropriately.  These same students also appear increasingly unable to comprehend critical vocabulary used in non-fiction writing. The unfortunate result of these challenges is an inability to contribute to class discussions on important ideas and the inevitable struggle with articulating a coherent response … Continue reading Fighting “The Death of Words” (Explorations in the Art of Grammar Series #3)

Little by Little

The stresses of the past calendar year have been numerous.  As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic colliding with regular responsibilities, many of us have found ourselves somewhat disoriented. Shifting priorities, schedules, and communities have forced creative personal and professional pursuits to the bottom shelf, and we’re struggling to find a way towards normalcy—much less excellence—again.  Mental, emotional, and even physical energy is in short … Continue reading Little by Little

Waiting for the Sun

Most of us in the Midwest found ourselves hiding indoors from winter weather this week.  While we curled up beside families and fireplaces, the snow just kept falling.  City maintenance trucks rounded our neighborhood repeatedly like cars on a racetrack, but to no avail. With temperatures hovering in the single digits and teens, there was little opportunity for melting, and the snow kept us home … Continue reading Waiting for the Sun

The Power of Story in Connecting With Teens

Story is a powerful thing.  As educators, we know this to be true.  In fact, we endeavor to read as many good, true, and beautiful stories to our young students as possible during the grammar stage.  Line after line, page after page, we invite them into the stories we hope will inform their understanding for years to come.  Much of the time, we read to … Continue reading The Power of Story in Connecting With Teens

Perseverance Will Have Its Reward

After several busy weeks filled with end-of-summer travel, my husband and I hit the track yesterday for our first jog in a while—and it was hard! I’ve been a runner for about twenty years now.  Those two decades have seen me train for long-distances races, jog slowly with a double stroller, break PR’s, and nurse numerous injuries.  My running has changed with seasons of life … Continue reading Perseverance Will Have Its Reward

5 Ways to Survive a Family Adventure

At this point in the coronavirus pandemic, families all over the world are reeling from a departure from the normal rhythms of our days.  Whether spring usually finds you happy at home or planning your next new expedition, we’re all on an adventure right now. C.S. Lewis famously wrote that “Adventures are never fun while you’re having them,”[1] and I have to agree with him … Continue reading 5 Ways to Survive a Family Adventure


Creation-ivity On Wednesday morning of our first week of pandemic-induced remote learning, stress was already running high.  In an effort to escape log-in requests and password reminders and reading instructions and device distribution and chat patrol, I slipped out our back door and descended the steps to the back yard.  I marched up the green hillside and stood with my face to the sun, welcoming … Continue reading Creation-ivity