Gutenberg College Workshop Series

The Gutenberg College Workshop Series is an educational outreach program designed to serve classical education communities, homeschooling communities, and independent learners. The workshops offer participants hands-on, high-quality educative experiences delivered by knowledgeable instructors that help participants develop skills, understand the world they live in, and cultivate their intellectual acumen.

Schedule your workshop today by contacting office@gutenberg.edu. Workshops are available nationally—pricing will vary by region. Limited scholarships are available based on need.

Catalog:

Art

Drawing: Knowing, Thinking, Creating

This daylong class will explore "drawing in the modern mode," through concept and hands-on experience. The workshop will meet in the Puccinelli Gallery art space at Gutenberg College. Students will learn a variety of drawing and mixed media (water-based) approaches to drawing. Through these different approaches, students will experiment and explore ways that contemporary drawing can be experienced as "knowing and thinking."

Education

The Art of Meaningful Discussion

Meaningful discussion is an exchange of thoughts and ideas, and it is a team effort. When people feel like a discussion has gone well, it is because they feel like they have been seen, heard, and understood; have had the opportunity to learn from the others in the room; and have made some headway on an issue that is meaningful to them. Discussions are unscripted and, consequently, unpredictable. The purpose of this workshop is to give discussion leaders confidence by addressing key issues to becoming an effective discussion leader and a good participant.

Click to download Eliot Grasso's notes for The Art of Meaningful Discussion.

Selecting a College

Choosing a college should reflect our trust in God's purposes for our lives. But all too often our trust in God falters in these critical decisions, and our choices align with the world rather than with the Bible. If families aren't careful, students can lose their freedom by taking on massive college debt, enrolling in programs that overpromise and underdeliver, and parents may give their children over to college faculty who may lack the skills to mentor young minds. Dr. Eliot Grasso has over a decade of college teaching and administrative experience in America and Europe and currently serves as the Provost of Gutenberg College in Eugene. In this talk, he will give families the tools and questions they need to think clearly about the college-selection process so that college decisions can be made with confidence and understanding.

Click to download Eliot Grasso's notes for the Pathways to College Workshop.

History and Culture

Francis Schaeffer on Art, Culture, and Christianity in the West

The objective of the this workshop is to engage students and families in open discussion of Schaeffer's historical narrative of the Western world, his philosophy and sociology of art, and broad concepts of culture as presented in How Shall We Then Live? The purpose of the seminar is to cultivate deep, independent thinking about history, culture, values, and reality for those interested in biblical truth. Our hope is that students will emerge with greater clarity about how to read culture, an understanding of the place of the arts within that culture, and an understanding of the way that historical cultures have interacted with biblical Christianity since antiquity.

Literature

Poetry and the Beautiful

The nature of beauty has long been the subject of debate. What is beauty, for starters? In what (or whom) is it found? This workshop explores these and other questions both in the abstract (philosophically) and concretely through the lens of poetry. Students read and discuss excerpts from the aesthetic philosophies of thinkers like Plato, Kant, and Nietzsche before turning to English-language poems renowned for their beauty. Students will also try their own hands at creating beauty out of words using various rhythms, tones, and rhyme schemes. Space is limited.

Math

Logical Foundations of Arithmetic

At the turn of the twentieth century, a number of mathematicians/philosophers were interested in finding the ultimate, undoubtable logical basis upon which arithmetic is founded. This workshop will look at these attempts and explore the relationship between logic and mathematics.

Abstraction and Algebra

Algebra, for many, is a difficult subject because it appears to be a set of meaningless rules and procedures without content. In a word, it is abstract. This workshop will look at the nature of abstraction and what role it plays in mathematics, language, and thought. Space is limited

Mathematics as a Skill

Mathematics presents challenges to many students. It is hard to learn. This workshop willl explore how we learn mathematics and compare the methods of memorization and skill development.

Geometry and Reality

Euclid's geometry was considered the gold standard for certainty in knowledge for 2500 years—partly because it was based on logical deduction from clear first principles and partly because it so clearly corresponded with our experience of the world. In the early twentieth century, both of these reasons were questioned. Non-Euclidean geometry is a non-intuitive mathematics deduced from first principles, and Einstein's general relativity claimed that geometry does not describe space. This workshop will explore these claims while thinking about the basis upon which we think mathematics is true.

Music

Performance, Composition, & Culture

Music performance and composition are personal and cultural expressions of human depth and meaning. Students with prior experience playing music will use the tin whistle as a tool to create new music in a traditional idiom while examining the cultural background in which traditional music has been created and performed.

Irish Traditional Music

Ireland has given the world a rich heritage of traditional music that has been shaped over centuries of oral tradition. In this workshop, students with prior experience playing an instrument will come into contact with that musical heritage by learning traditional tunes, playing techniques, and the cultural context of Irish traditional music.

Philosophy

Common Sense Philosophy and Thomas Reid

Reid's classic text An Inquiry Into the Human Mind on the Principles of Common Sense (1764) responds to Scottish philosopher David Hume's skeptical claims about man's ability to grasp knowledge, and it serves as a landmark in the eighteenth-century discussion of epistemology. In this philosophy workshop, we will discuss the common-sense philosophy of Thomas Reid (1710-1796) in order to develop a nuanced framework for evaluating what knowledge is, how one acquires knowledge, and how one demonstrates knowledge.

Science

Ecology Workshop: Streams of Western Oregon

This day-long field class will explore a stream near your home. It will go up the McKenzie River to the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, a world-renowned stream research site. Students will learn about the fish and aquatic insects that inhabit the stream, how climate and geology affect the stream, and how the "digestive system" of the stream works.

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