Lesson 1: Teaching Logic Restfully with Rigor

In this session Joelle Hodge addresses the question of how to teach logic classically, balancing rest with rigor, and how to bring to class a “well-furnished” mind.

Don't Have the Book?

This course will be twice as enjoyable and helpful if you have The Discovery of Deduction text.

Recommended Reading

Read the introduction to The Discovery of Deduction.

Recommended supplemental books:


Outline of Session

How to Teach Logic Classically: Balancing Rigor with Rest (Scholé) and What to Expect of the Scholé Student

I. Preparing to teach a scholé course
IA. The classical educator: Students become like their teacher. What kind of teacher of are you?
IA1. Becoming your own teacher
IA2. What you bring to the classroom: a “well-stocked mind”
IB. Supplementing the educators’ course of study in tandem to normal course preparation
IB1. Teacher reading list
IB2. Reading excerpts

II. Developing your pedagogical approach
IIA. Cultivating wonder, curiosity, and discovery in your students; fostering the Socratic method in the classical classroom
IIB. Learning the right questions to ask as you study

III. Training your students to ask the right questions
IIIA. Training the student to find the underlying arguments
IIIB. Goals for dialectic instruction
IIIB1. Reaching back to grammar stage
IIIB2. Reaching forward to rhetoric stage

Discussion Questions

I. Preparing to teach a scholé course
(1) Why is it necessary to for a Discovery of Deduction educator to be engaging with the real world (politics, theology, philosophy, literature, movies, poetry, podcasts, etc.)?
(2) How are you “stocking” your mind?
(3) What kind of student are you?

II. Developing your pedagogical approach
(1) Do you wonder anything? What are you curious about? What discoveries have you made in the last week, month, or year?
(2) How is the classical learning process reflected in how you learn?
(3) Do you continue to be a classical student? If not, why not? And if so, in what ways?

III. Training your students to ask the right questions
(1) Is the myth about questions (the claim that there are no bad questions) true or false?
(2) What are the right questions to ask?
(3) How does learning to ask the right questions lead a student to discovering the argument?
(4) What executive function skills should be expected from the classical student?

IV. Miscellaneous questions
(1) Why is formal logic regarded as an art?
(2) In what ways does logic enable us to learn or study virtually any subject?
(3) What is the difference between an art and a science?
(4) What is the difference between formal and informal logic?

Assignments and Action Steps

(1) Make a list of your Educator’s Supplemental Curriculum—a course of study in tandem to your normal course preparations.
(2) Develop your course requirements from the perspective of your students. Consider the executive function skills necessary for students taking your course to succeed.
(3) Develop your orientation materials, specifically tailored to your course—synthesizing the executive function skills to course content and requirements.
(4) Create a Note-Taking Guide for your students to use in conjunction with DD over the course of the year. They should keep blank pages of this guide in a three-ring notebook dedicated to their DD course. They can then use the guide for each reading assignment you give them. It will be used in addition to the review questions found in DD.

This Note-Taking Guide should include:
(a) an area for them to list unfamiliar words, terms, ideas, or facts that are not addressed in the chapter review sections
(b) an area for them list sentences or paragraphs that they found difficult to understand
(c) an area for them to make connections and/or relate what they’ve read to their life or other studies
(d) an area for them to share their own questions that they considered while reading the text
(e) an area for them to summarize why this reading assignment was necessary and significant
(f) an area for them to identify the most interesting pieces of information they encountered while reading their assignment

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