Classical Education in a Cyber Monday World

Great Hearts Academies November 28, 2022

Online studentGreat Hearts places an emphasis on arts, humanities, and philosophy and contends that technology can sometimes be distracting to student development when it is used without purpose or strategy.  Technology and screens are all around us.  Smart phones and devices have become as fundamental to our daily lives as our clothing.  You’ve probably heard someone explain how “lost” they feel when they leave home without their phone.  You may have even felt that way yourself.

At Great Hearts, we believe in technology and its many brilliant applications. However, our students leave their cell phones behind during the day so they can engage in reflection and conversation. We think carefully of when screens are presented so scholars can engage one another face to face first, recognizing the inherent value of the human beings in front of them.

Great Hearts Chief Academic Officer Jake Tawney explains that technology can be a beautiful thing when it enhances learning and deepens a sense of wonder in the students. “At Great Hearts we proceed with great intentionality when deciding to utilize any technology in the classroom. The single most important technology continues to be the book.”

Although Great Hearts teaches to a variety of learning modes, we believe the written and spoken word hold a privileged position in human expression and knowledge.  You will not find computer labs in our academies or regular use of laptops in our classrooms.

We do, however, have virtual options for families looking for a classical education.  “Great Hearts Online is a virtual, classical academy anchored in relationship, curriculum, virtue, and partnership,” said Heidi Vasiloff, Executive Director of Great Hearts Online.  “Through our online school, we remove traditional barriers to access and education for families across Arizona, Texas, and soon nationally. Technology is a conduit for relationship, content, learning, and partnering – we are not limited by location because technology allows us to connect with each other across the street or across the state! We use technology in specific, intentional ways. Technology allows students, teachers, and parents to connect and build community in different ways..”

With emphasis on shaping the hearts and minds of our scholars, we proved an oasis from the noise so they can truly immerse themselves in their education and be present in their classroom interactions.  They can use the vehicle of technology under parental supervision at home in a responsible manner when they realize all the Truth, Goodness, and Beauty the physical world has to offer.

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