Classical Lutheran Education

The Consortium for Classical and Lutheran Education celebrates its tenth anniversary with its tenth annual conference in Concordia, Missouri, June 22-24.  In addition to all kinds of workshops on curriculum, teaching, and catechesis, the plenary speaker will be Rev. Thomas Korcok of the Lutheran Church of Canada.

He has done some remarkable research for his doctorate on classical education in the Lutheran tradition. I’ve seen it.  He shows how the classical liberal arts were key to Luther’s whole educational project, including the teaching of the doctrine of vocation.  He also shows how the Reformation impacted the liberal arts.  He then traces classical education through church history, including the schools established by the Lutheran immigrants in America, from C. F. W. Walther through the Lutheran educational system of the not-t0o-distant past to the revival of classical Lutheran education as represented by the CCLE today.

Rev. Korcok will be giving three plenary lectures, and I know they will be really good.  I’ll be talking about an integrated humanities curriculum I’ve been working on, the new volumes of the Omnibus series from Veritas Press.

The conference will be held on the campus of St. Paul Lutheran High School, the last of the Missouri Synod’s boarding schools, a little ways from Kansas City.

Homeschoolers, schoolers, teachers, pastors, and anyone interested are all welcome.

Go here for more information and to register:  The Consortium for Classical and Lutheran Education :: Home.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://acroamaticus.blogspot.com Mark Henderson

    Dr Veith, the next time you are in Australia you really must talk about your work in this area. There is very little – to my knowledge, nothing – being done by Lutherans ‘down under’ in the area of reviving the classical model of education, and yet I’m sure, following the growing American trend in this direction, that this approach to education will take off here too in response to increasing dissatisfaction with the progressive model. Yet Lutherans here, with all we have to offer from our tradition, are in danger of ‘missing the boat’.

  • http://acroamaticus.blogspot.com Mark Henderson

    Dr Veith, the next time you are in Australia you really must talk about your work in this area. There is very little – to my knowledge, nothing – being done by Lutherans ‘down under’ in the area of reviving the classical model of education, and yet I’m sure, following the growing American trend in this direction, that this approach to education will take off here too in response to increasing dissatisfaction with the progressive model. Yet Lutherans here, with all we have to offer from our tradition, are in danger of ‘missing the boat’.

  • Brenda

    I wish I could come…alas it will not be so… will there be dvd/cd recordings made, or perhaps Issues etc… or youtube ?

  • Brenda

    I wish I could come…alas it will not be so… will there be dvd/cd recordings made, or perhaps Issues etc… or youtube ?

  • http://lutheranlogomaniac.com Todd Peperkorn

    We are sending our headmaster and the director of our pre-school this year. I hope to see even more coming!

  • http://lutheranlogomaniac.com Todd Peperkorn

    We are sending our headmaster and the director of our pre-school this year. I hope to see even more coming!

  • JennaT

    I have been seriously looking at the Omnibus cirriculum for my soon to be middle schooler but did not realize that Dr. Vieth was contributing! It will certainly make its way into my cart now :)

    Sounds like a wonderful conference….I second the question of whether it will be available on cd afterward.

    THanks!

  • JennaT

    I have been seriously looking at the Omnibus cirriculum for my soon to be middle schooler but did not realize that Dr. Vieth was contributing! It will certainly make its way into my cart now :)

    Sounds like a wonderful conference….I second the question of whether it will be available on cd afterward.

    THanks!

  • forty-two

    I third the cd request ;).

    Also, question about Omnibus – I had the impression from several Omnibus users that Omnibus (the first three levels at least) was strongly Reformed. I don’t mind a bit of impromptu comparative religion study ;), or substituting a few books (the two Sproul ones in Omni I, for ex), but it sounded like all the (rather substantial) worldview components in Omnibus were from an explicitly Reformed perspective. Yes, yes, we’re all Christians – but being Lutheran, I’d just as soon teach a Lutheran worldview ;), and up to this point I’d ruled out Omnibus because it seemed like it would be more trouble than it was worth to wade through all the Reformed theology that the writers had worked so hard to integrate so nicely into the whole of the curriculum.

    But now I hear that Dr. Veith is writing some of the later series. So is Omnibus less Reformed than I’ve observed and been told? (Or is Dr. Veith sneaking Lutheran theology into his parts ;)?)

  • forty-two

    I third the cd request ;).

    Also, question about Omnibus – I had the impression from several Omnibus users that Omnibus (the first three levels at least) was strongly Reformed. I don’t mind a bit of impromptu comparative religion study ;), or substituting a few books (the two Sproul ones in Omni I, for ex), but it sounded like all the (rather substantial) worldview components in Omnibus were from an explicitly Reformed perspective. Yes, yes, we’re all Christians – but being Lutheran, I’d just as soon teach a Lutheran worldview ;), and up to this point I’d ruled out Omnibus because it seemed like it would be more trouble than it was worth to wade through all the Reformed theology that the writers had worked so hard to integrate so nicely into the whole of the curriculum.

    But now I hear that Dr. Veith is writing some of the later series. So is Omnibus less Reformed than I’ve observed and been told? (Or is Dr. Veith sneaking Lutheran theology into his parts ;)?)

  • forty-two

    And a tangentially related bit of info (because there have been several discussions on classical ed and math):

    The Mathematics Enhancement Programme (MEP) is a British adaptation of a Hungarian program who primary program, at least (Yrs 1-6 equals K-5; I haven’t looked much at the secondary program), looks excellent in terms of promoting pure math understanding in a rigorous yet fun and doable-for-kids sort of way (it appeals strongly to the math geek in me). And the complete program is free online. It has an active yahoo group and is well-regarded among the conceptual math hs’ers on the Well-Trained Mind boards. It has a big emphasis on logic and problem solving (it includes math olympiad problems in the latter part of Yr 6), and does a good job providing the necessary scaffolding to teach the thinking required.

    Anyway, I think it is definitely worth a look for any classical educators.

  • forty-two

    And a tangentially related bit of info (because there have been several discussions on classical ed and math):

    The Mathematics Enhancement Programme (MEP) is a British adaptation of a Hungarian program who primary program, at least (Yrs 1-6 equals K-5; I haven’t looked much at the secondary program), looks excellent in terms of promoting pure math understanding in a rigorous yet fun and doable-for-kids sort of way (it appeals strongly to the math geek in me). And the complete program is free online. It has an active yahoo group and is well-regarded among the conceptual math hs’ers on the Well-Trained Mind boards. It has a big emphasis on logic and problem solving (it includes math olympiad problems in the latter part of Yr 6), and does a good job providing the necessary scaffolding to teach the thinking required.

    Anyway, I think it is definitely worth a look for any classical educators.

  • sg

    I am starting Omnibus I this fall with my 7th grade son. Is there a Classical ed. Lutheran blog where we can chat about curriculum?

  • sg

    I am starting Omnibus I this fall with my 7th grade son. Is there a Classical ed. Lutheran blog where we can chat about curriculum?

  • Bryan Lindemood

    Hey Veith: Are you too a part of the Lutheran anti-Ascension day conspiracy? Why no post about this very important opportunity to celebrate? (Pastor B. Erickson wants to fly kites tonight)

  • Bryan Lindemood

    Hey Veith: Are you too a part of the Lutheran anti-Ascension day conspiracy? Why no post about this very important opportunity to celebrate? (Pastor B. Erickson wants to fly kites tonight)

  • forty-two

    Is there a Classical ed. Lutheran blog where we can chat about curriculum?
    I don’t really know of any. There are a few Lutheran homeschool groups (Martin Loopers and a yahoo group are the ones of which I’m aware). There are a few classical education homeschooling groups that include some Lutheran posters (the Well-Trained Mind boards are big and fast-moving, plus there’s a nice traditional classical ed yahoo group with a couple Lutherans, though mostly Catholic and Orthodox). There are a few (well, me – I’m sure there are others ;)) Lutheran classical hs’ers who blog. But nothing that combines it all.

    Right now I’ve found the WTM boards to be the most helpful forum for classical ed discussions – plenty of theoretical discussions along with plenty of nuts and bolts curriculum discussions, and everything in between.

  • forty-two

    Is there a Classical ed. Lutheran blog where we can chat about curriculum?
    I don’t really know of any. There are a few Lutheran homeschool groups (Martin Loopers and a yahoo group are the ones of which I’m aware). There are a few classical education homeschooling groups that include some Lutheran posters (the Well-Trained Mind boards are big and fast-moving, plus there’s a nice traditional classical ed yahoo group with a couple Lutherans, though mostly Catholic and Orthodox). There are a few (well, me – I’m sure there are others ;)) Lutheran classical hs’ers who blog. But nothing that combines it all.

    Right now I’ve found the WTM boards to be the most helpful forum for classical ed discussions – plenty of theoretical discussions along with plenty of nuts and bolts curriculum discussions, and everything in between.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    The plan for the CCLE website, which the post links to, is to have just the kind of blog and discussion forums you are asking for.

    As for Omnibus, I started working on volume 4, just out. It does indeed have a Lutheran strain, with extensive essays by me, my daughter Joanna Hensley, and John Warwick Montgomery. I would also say that my editorial presence mitigated some of the overt Calvinist bias of the other volumes. (Those were Calvinists doing them, so of course they express their theology. In some cases, they weren’t even aware of how biased some of it seemed.) Volume 4 is about the ancient world.

    Volume 5, which we are working on now, is about the Medieval world through the Reformation. There is lots of good Luther reading, including primary sources such as “The Freedom of the Christian” and Roland Bainton’s great biography, “Here I Stand.” I wrote the essays and Joanna wrote the exercises. There is a lot of other good stuff in that volume, including units on Spencer and George Herbert, which I wrote.

    Mark, I’m sure Joanna will bring classical education with her when she and her husband go back to Australia. She already knows of a school in Perth.

    I look forward to seeing those of you who can come at Concordia, Missouri. Be sure to introduce yourself to me.

    I don’t know whether the sessions will be recorded. That sounds like a good idea. Watch the CCLE website.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    The plan for the CCLE website, which the post links to, is to have just the kind of blog and discussion forums you are asking for.

    As for Omnibus, I started working on volume 4, just out. It does indeed have a Lutheran strain, with extensive essays by me, my daughter Joanna Hensley, and John Warwick Montgomery. I would also say that my editorial presence mitigated some of the overt Calvinist bias of the other volumes. (Those were Calvinists doing them, so of course they express their theology. In some cases, they weren’t even aware of how biased some of it seemed.) Volume 4 is about the ancient world.

    Volume 5, which we are working on now, is about the Medieval world through the Reformation. There is lots of good Luther reading, including primary sources such as “The Freedom of the Christian” and Roland Bainton’s great biography, “Here I Stand.” I wrote the essays and Joanna wrote the exercises. There is a lot of other good stuff in that volume, including units on Spencer and George Herbert, which I wrote.

    Mark, I’m sure Joanna will bring classical education with her when she and her husband go back to Australia. She already knows of a school in Perth.

    I look forward to seeing those of you who can come at Concordia, Missouri. Be sure to introduce yourself to me.

    I don’t know whether the sessions will be recorded. That sounds like a good idea. Watch the CCLE website.

  • Booklover

    I’m curious, Dr. Veith~~I thought that Veritas Press, with its Calvinist viewpoint, commissioned the Omnibus series. How did you get involved?

    Also, in what ways did the Calvinist bias manifest itself in the earlier editions?

  • Booklover

    I’m curious, Dr. Veith~~I thought that Veritas Press, with its Calvinist viewpoint, commissioned the Omnibus series. How did you get involved?

    Also, in what ways did the Calvinist bias manifest itself in the earlier editions?

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Booklover, I got involved because Veritas Press asked me!

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Booklover, I got involved because Veritas Press asked me!

  • Booklover

    Well certainly they did! :-) I was wondering if they were attempting to expand their theological point of view, or simply their market. :-)

  • Booklover

    Well certainly they did! :-) I was wondering if they were attempting to expand their theological point of view, or simply their market. :-)

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Well, I like to think they identified me as a scholar in this area of the integration of humanities and classical Christian education.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Well, I like to think they identified me as a scholar in this area of the integration of humanities and classical Christian education.

  • Booklover

    Yes, I know that’s true. And I wish I could start my kids all over again with a classical Christian education. We did some in the early grades. . .

  • Booklover

    Yes, I know that’s true. And I wish I could start my kids all over again with a classical Christian education. We did some in the early grades. . .

  • Booklover

    Oh, dear, that’s what I hate about written communication. . .as I read over the latest short posts I hope I haven’t been misunderstood. . .of course I know that Veritas Press needs and is interested in your scholarship, and it is wonderful that they have utilized your knowledge and literary expertise. I hope that my words haven’t sounded otherwise. I was just meaning to express curiosity about whether they are opening up to the Lutheran viewpoint, because I was aware of their more Reformed view.

  • Booklover

    Oh, dear, that’s what I hate about written communication. . .as I read over the latest short posts I hope I haven’t been misunderstood. . .of course I know that Veritas Press needs and is interested in your scholarship, and it is wonderful that they have utilized your knowledge and literary expertise. I hope that my words haven’t sounded otherwise. I was just meaning to express curiosity about whether they are opening up to the Lutheran viewpoint, because I was aware of their more Reformed view.

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  • Shelley Dorman

    My husband led me to your site. We are LCMS homeschoolers. I use and love a Charlotte Mason curriculum. I was at first drawn to a classical education , but as yet have not read a great book that explains the philosophies well. The-Well-Trained mind was a good curriculum guide but that was it. When I discovered and read many of Charlotte Mason’s philosophies from her own books, these rang true as to how children best learn. I feel that classical and Charlotte Mason are definitely compatible. After attending the yearly Charlotte Mason conference in NC this past summer, I learned that CM is quite orthodox, highly prizing orthodoxy over innovation. Would you speak to what my children could be missing in a CM as opposed to classical education, if anything, and are there books that would address the aspect of how children best learn classically?

  • Shelley Dorman

    My husband led me to your site. We are LCMS homeschoolers. I use and love a Charlotte Mason curriculum. I was at first drawn to a classical education , but as yet have not read a great book that explains the philosophies well. The-Well-Trained mind was a good curriculum guide but that was it. When I discovered and read many of Charlotte Mason’s philosophies from her own books, these rang true as to how children best learn. I feel that classical and Charlotte Mason are definitely compatible. After attending the yearly Charlotte Mason conference in NC this past summer, I learned that CM is quite orthodox, highly prizing orthodoxy over innovation. Would you speak to what my children could be missing in a CM as opposed to classical education, if anything, and are there books that would address the aspect of how children best learn classically?

  • http://zachdorman.blogspot.com/ Shelley Dorman

    My husband’s blog.

  • http://zachdorman.blogspot.com/ Shelley Dorman

    My husband’s blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407225838 Yanti

    We’re homeschooling for a lot of rensoas family closeness, freedom of schedule, home-cooked lunches, being able to study our interests, wanting our kids to become free thinkers. But, we are not religious and that puts us in a weird spot in the homeschooling world! I’m sure we could get a quality education for our kids in public schools for the simple fact that we are involved in their education. And really, just because we’re homeschooling now doesn’t mean we always will. We get a lot of grief from certain family members for our decision that somehow because we homeschool we’re holier than thou or shunning public education. I hate that! We put a lot of thought into this and obviously didn’t decide to homeschool to take the easy way out or to be better than anyone else. Right now, it works for us and that’s what ultimately matters.I enjoyed reading this post! It’s really easy to assume and put people into certain categories based on how they educate their children. I enjoy the different perspectives. That’s what education is all about!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407225838 Yanti

    We’re homeschooling for a lot of rensoas family closeness, freedom of schedule, home-cooked lunches, being able to study our interests, wanting our kids to become free thinkers. But, we are not religious and that puts us in a weird spot in the homeschooling world! I’m sure we could get a quality education for our kids in public schools for the simple fact that we are involved in their education. And really, just because we’re homeschooling now doesn’t mean we always will. We get a lot of grief from certain family members for our decision that somehow because we homeschool we’re holier than thou or shunning public education. I hate that! We put a lot of thought into this and obviously didn’t decide to homeschool to take the easy way out or to be better than anyone else. Right now, it works for us and that’s what ultimately matters.I enjoyed reading this post! It’s really easy to assume and put people into certain categories based on how they educate their children. I enjoy the different perspectives. That’s what education is all about!


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