YMB 86 Liberal Arts in the Age of Stem: A Conversation with Martin Cothran

Everyone knows that we should focus our educational efforts on teaching kids skills they can actually use in real life, right? Except maybe that is not the best path to the most practical education after all. Yes, a classical education can build virtue, but it also creates the best employees for the modern world. Need convincing? Then you are going to enjoy this interview with Martin Cothran of Memoria Press. You may learn something new about the term “liberal arts” and might just walk away convinced that STEM is not necessarily where we should focus. Enjoy!


What the tech industry needs is people who can interpret the data, people who can say what it means, and that’s not a technical skill. That’s a skill you get from being broadly educated. This is your morning basket, where we help you bring truth, goodness, and beauty to your homeschool day. Hello everyone. And welcome to episode 86 of the, your morning basket podcast. I am Pam Barnhill, your host, and I am so happy that you are joining me here today. Well, today the episode of the podcast is one of those that did not go the way I expected. I thought I knew in my head exactly what this conversation was going to be about, but I learned so much from Martin Cothran during the course of this podcast, it really made me think we defined a few terms and it just kind of switched some of my ideas around to a new way of thinking. It was so interesting. One of the terms that we define is liberal arts. And I thought I knew where Martin was going with this one and he went somewhere else. So this was a really great learning podcast for me.

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One of those that I'm going to tuck away and remember as I go forward. So I think it really going to enjoy this episode of the podcast. We talk about why a broader education is better than a narrow education. And with the focus on STEM these days, they're narrowing down education, making it more vocational. And Martin gives us some great examples from his own family of why a broader education is better.
I think you're really going to enjoy this one and it's going to spark some conversation. So I want to invite you to come on over to our private community. We have a community of almost 4,000 homeschooling moms who support each other in their homeschooling and liked to discuss big ideas like the ones in this podcast. And it's absolutely free. And you can join that by coming to members.Pambarnhill.com.
And we'll include a link on the show notes. And all you have to do is apply to join. We'll let you in, you can read the rules, see if it's the place for you, and then start the discussion. So we would love to have you join us over there. And now we'll get on with the podcast.
Martin Cothran is a veteran homeschool father of four adult children, and is the director of the classical Latin school association. He is the author of several educational programs, including traditional logic, material, logic and classical rhetoric. Just to name a few, he is the editor of The classical teacher magazine by Memoria Press. He holds a BA in philosophy and economics from the university of California at Santa Barbara and an MBA in Christian apologetics from the Simon Greenleaf school, which is now part of Trinity University. Martin has spent 25 years as an influential voice on education policy issues in Kentucky, where he resides with his wife. Martin, welcome to the podcast.
Nice to be here
Well I am so excited to have you on here today to talk about this topic. I think people are going to love it, but start off by telling us a little bit about you and homeschooling and what you've done in classical education.
Well, you mentioned that, that we homeschooled our four children who are now grown and have some of whom have produced children of their own. We call them grandchildren and we are really happy with how it turned out for our family and in the process of, of classically educating our children. I was involved at that same time with, with Memoria press, which was founded in 1998 and with Highlands Latin school, the school that is sort of joined at the hip with Memoria press here in Louisville, Kentucky. And so I've taught for many years, we started our online classical Academy here back in 2005. I directed that for awhile and, you know, done a lot of speaking and writing about education. And, you know, when you write and think about something for a long time, you, you do hope you have some kind of decent grasp of it.
And, and so we've done both things, you know, we've homeschooled, and we've also been involved in Christian schooling, and both of those of the, of the classical form, you know, our children were taught Latin and logic and classical rhetoric, as well as reading the best that's been thought and said, and now they're all computer programmers. And we're to talk a little bit more about that, but, but yeah, so, so now, and we've actually just started Memoria college master's program in the great books, which is what I'm spending most of my time doing these days.
Oh. So much fun. Okay. Yeah, we are. We definitely need to talk about how these classically educated kids end up in computer programming. So I want to be sure we come back to that, but let's start with the goal of classical education. I know that, you know, it's, that's one of the hard things to really pin down. When we seek to define classical education. These days, there seems to be so many different definitions of it floating around, out there and, and hardly a consensus that you find so define for what you feel like the goal of classical education is.
Well, There's two goals of classical education. One is an individual goal, and that is to teach students how to be wise and virtuous, that involves what the ancients would have called prudence. Thomas Aquinas defines wisdom as dividing things, rightly ordering things, rightly it's a matter of being able to make distinctions and to see resemblances and to know what is better and what is worse to know what is true and what is false.
What's, what's good. What's, what's evil, what's beautiful. What's ugly. You know, that's, that's, that's all a part of, of what wisdom means. And in virtue, in the classical sense, you know, it has a different ring in our ear now as, as modern people. But the classical definition of virtue had to do with strength.
You know, when I'm in, in the Lord of the rings, there's a Tolkien uses it this way. And the Lord of the rings in that scene where a Frodo has been wounded by the sword of the knowledge skull. And he asks one of the, the other hobbits to go and find him some Apolis a kind of herbs. And he says he has some, but it has lost its virtue. That's the old use of that word virtue. It's a, it's a, it's a power. We, we have intellectual virtues, their intellectual virtues on their moral virtues. And we have those by virtue of being human beings and with human natures. And so as a, a creature created in the image of God, we have certain powers God has given us to go along with that. And it's our responsibility to develop those. So wisdom and virtue that's on the individual level. And then on the cultural level, the goal of classical education is to pass on our culture specifically in the old classical education, the culture of the Christian West, we need to pass that on to each generation. And unfortunately the educational goal of passing on a culture has really fallen off the radar screen and modern education.
Now we're into, you know, developing children, you know, child-centered the old progressivist child-centered education. And then this modern vocational education where the goal of education is to produce workers for the economy that was not the classical goal for education. It was to pass on your culture.
Okay. So what is the difference then between a classical education and a liberal arts education? Or is there a difference?
Well, the term liberal arts education Is a little bit of an equivocal term. It means different things to different people, just like classical education was, as you mentioned, when most people, and I've noticed this, I spent some time reading four or five books that had come out just in the last couple of years last year on the liberal arts, basically defending it against this, this sort of STEM onslaught and the, the way that that liberal arts is used in those books. And by many people is really not the traditional liberal arts of classical education. They just mean the humanities. They think in an English major, a history major. So my life is a liberal arts major.
That's definitely not a liberal arts major. That's a history and literature are sciences. They're they're moral sciences, human sciences. What we call the humanities, the liberal arts in the old sense meant the, the arts of language in math. It w in the medieval accounting, it was the seven liberal arts and the first three, which were grammar, logic and rhetoric.
Those were the three language arts, the grammar, which was the study of, of how language is structured logic, which was the study of a valid argumentation and rhetoric, the art of persuasion. Those are the all three old language arts. And then the rest of the liberal arts were math. You know, we, we, we, we tend to pit liberal arts against math when in the traditional rendition of those things, math was, was part of that. Four of the seven liberal arts are mathematical arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music. Music was the application of arithmetic. And astronomy was the application of geometry. Those are all mathematical arts. So in the traditional accounting, math is a liberal art. It's one of the two kinds of, of arts in art just means skill.
All right. So you have language skills and math skills, and that's what made up the traditional liberal arts. When we say liberal arts. Now a lot of people just mean the humanities, which are not really arts per se.
Okay. So that's interesting. So this is why it's so important for us to define terms before we start having a conversation. Right?
Absolutely. Absolutely. All right.
Well, let's take this one step further. What is STEM and why do you think there's so much attention being placed on STEM right now? Well, STEM literally is an acronym referring to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. And it's, it's the, it is the manifestation, the most recent manifestation of this emphasis on vocational skills because we're looking at our economy and we're seeing that, that employers can't find people who can do their jobs very well. And so we think that focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics is going to solve that problem. When in fact, I don't think it is going to solve that problem, what we want to do. And the whole idea of STEM is to teach children narrow technical skills.
And we think that that's going to make them more employable and that they are going to be able to find jobs, right. And that's, that's a comforting thing to hear from your school, right. But the fact is that, that, that, that narrowing a child's education does not make them more employable. We, you know, the thing I've noticed, I have mentioned, I have four kids. My oldest is a very high level programmer, and he works for a sports analytics company. Now he was a, this, just to tell you how this, and this is how it, these kinds of stories are very common in the tech industry. You'll have somebody. My, my son let's take as an example, who was a philosophy major in, in college, never took a math course, never took a computer science course. He then went on to law school for three years and then was a lawyer for four years. And didn't like it. So he closed down his company and started a software development company. And now he's, and this is two or three years ago.
Now he's very successful because why is that? Because he's, he got a classical education he's broadly educated. The thing that people don't realize. And my second son is in a similar position, and they actually work at the same sports analytics company that works with the NFL edge sports here in Louisville, Kentucky. And it's the same thing there. And they all say the same thing, look, number crunching, and narrow technical skills. Yeah, there's, there's a few jobs out there, but they really don't pay all that. Well, what the tech industry needs is people who can interpret the data, people who can say what it means, and that's not a technical skill. That's a skill you get from being broadly educated. And in fact, there was a book that came out just recently called Range by David Epstein. He was the guy who wrote the sports gene, and the subtitle is how generalists thrive in a specialized world. And this is, this, this book just really opened my eyes to a lot of law. This, because that's what he's arguing. That people who are broadly educated do much better in any particular thing than somebody who's narrowly educated and can only do one thing.
And he makes this comparison. He calls it the, the, the Roger paradigm, Roger Federer, or the tennis player. Who's still playing tennis. I think he's been playing tennis for 100 years now. And then, and then, and then the Tiger, the Tiger method of educating, which is Tiger Woods, who specialized in golf from very early on.
Now, what Epstein says is that golf is, is a, I forget the terminology used, but that, that's a thing you can do. You can be, you can train just in that and do well at that. Chess is the same way, right? But something like tennis is not, which is why when Roger Federer was young, his parents made him play other sports. And now he's still playing at a pretty advanced age. And in fact, that's kind of the pattern, people who focus on one narrow thing, they can do that narrow thing for a while, but they don't last very long, but Roger Federer and, and other people who have a broad training and things, they, they, they tend to do it better and they tend to do it longer. And he's got a chart in there showing this curve. And I think, and what he says is basically the, the modern tech industry is much more like tennis than it is like golf. The rules change every 10 minutes. You gotta be versatile. That's the, that's the skill you have in the modern economy is to be versatile and only a general educational allow you to do that.
Oh, that's so fascinating. And, you know, I think that's something that a lot of parents need to hear is that, you know, you do have somebody who was a philosophy major, who yes, actually did get a job.
Hmm. Well, you know, I was in what worked in education policy at the state level here in Kentucky for a number of years. And I ended up, you know, we, we, I, I represented a conservative policy foundation, a state level policy foundation here. And I ended up working in the, in the, in the big debate in the 1990s, over on EDU sweeping education reform plan here, that was very progressive and very vocational oriented on all this. And so I worked a lot with these groups, like the, the school, the States, the Kentucky school administrators association, the Kentucky superintendents association, school boards association. I was working there right shoulder to shoulder with those people. And then one thing I noticed was that the people who are at the top of the heap and those organizations, they all had basically classical educations. They were English majors. They were history majors. They were this sort of thing, because those kinds of professions teach you how to deal with people. You know, if you have read Shakespeare and you've read Dickens, you've already met 90% of personality types. My wife and I do this all the time. We'll say, that's Mr. Guppy, you know, it's, you know what, whoever, and, and, and you, you know, you, you read, you read authors like that, and you become intimate with them and you will never meet a stranger. And so in terms of personal, cause what are even in the tech, even in a tech business, most of the jobs are not tech jobs.
Most of the jobs are customer service and marketing, and those are jobs you need to have interpersonal skills. And it, you get far more of that. If you take a humanities degree, for example, then if you were to take some narrow technical skill.
Right, right. And, and I'm assuming that at some point, your son taught himself the technical skills he needed to do, you know, to become a developer.
Well, most, most pure computer programmers actually are that way. They taught themselves. I mean, we think of that. You have to go to college to learn that. Well, no. My, my son, the problem was that we, we discovered my son was hacking when he was 12 years old, but we had to take the internet away for a couple of years, but he would basically, he would, he we'd go, we'd drive to my mother's house. And in Kansas, as we have for every year, for the last 35 years, and he here, he is 12 years old and he's got these big thick computer manuals and he's going through them. And, and that's very common in, in the, in the tech industry. In fact, one guy I know who runs a tech business said, look, the guy I want is the guy who's been doing this since he was a kid who loves, who loves doing it, that's who they're looking for.
Okay. Well that, okay. That's so interesting. So we're going to jump around a little bit, because I want to talk about, you have some parents whose children, art, maybe like your son when he was 12, and they're expressing this interest in technology. And all of a sudden, they think I need to throw everything in to this STEM education, because that's where their interests lie. Why is that not the right way to do it?
Well, you know, there there's an educational principle. I don't, hear articulated enough, which is that, you know, because parents think that parents think that they need to indulge the strength of their student. You know, if they're really interested in this, let's just go all in on this. Like you said, and you know, I remember an interview with Pete Rose, who was some people account to be all around the greatest, all around baseball player ever. And somebody asked him, you know, how did you learn how to play baseball so well? And, and he said, well, I practiced the things I didn't do well, I practiced the things I didn't do. Well, let me think about that. I mean, you just become a more well-rounded person that way, you know, you've got baseball players who may be good hitters, but they can't catch a ball. You know, you may have a players who can throw the ball right to first base for the out, but can't hit. Rose did all of it.
Well, most of us, you know, there's a few people who just need to be specialist in their life, you know, and that's, that's, that's great, but to be more employable and quite frankly, just to be a better human being, I think it's better to be a well-rounded person. You can do lots of things well.
Yeah. I agree. I agree. I get frustrated with the whole learning styles thing. Like we don't want to just, we don't want to just play to their advantage. We want to build up the things that they struggle with. It practice those. So will you talk about language being one of the primary liberal arts to focus on? Why is that?
Well, because, Because you know, you, we, you basically have two, two basic skills. They're either linguistic or mathematical. There are other qualitative or quantitative. Those are the two skills, two kinds of skills. And the quantitative skills are great. You know, there's of course, lots of uses for them now, but you, most of what we use, even when we're programmers is language. I mean, even though my oldest son who not only works at, at a sports analytics company, but runs his own sports analytics startup that he's had for several years and six being very successful at that, he's got to do marketing, he's got to figure out how to sell his product. He's got, you know, there's in order to sell the mathematical things that they come up with, you have to have non-mathematical skills to sell it. Right. So, so languages we use all the time. We even used language to teach math, if you noticed. And, and, and I have thought a lot about this just in recent years, for some reason, because I'm, you know, I'm looking I'm 61 years old now, and I'm, I'm looking, looking back a little bit more than I'm looking forward these days. And, and I, I, I thought, you know, why, you know, I've gotten by because I can communicate, this is the secret sauce. And being successful in life is being able to communicate well, being able to communicate convincingly, being able to communicate persuasively, you know, this was important to the Greeks because the Greeks were always suing each other. Right. They, and, and, and they were always, they were taking each other to court all the time. Some, some ancient writer, I forget who it was, came back from Athens to maybe Egypt or something said, these people, they argue all the time. They, they Sue each other all the time. And if you think about it, we're a lot like that now. No, it was very important for them to know how to argue and to know how to persuade. And it's even more important now with the, with the, with the media, as we have it today, we're having to communicate all the time. We don't communicate by numbers unless you're a physicist or something. We communicate with language that's most of our lives, it's our personal lives and our professional lives.
Awesome. Well, you know, if we're looking at reclaiming the liberal arts in education, either in classical schools, right. You know, just any schools or homeschooling, what does the future of education look like if we're able to do that?
Well, I think it's been surprising to me the rise of classical education and its its growth, both in the homeschool community and in the wider Christian education world, it has grown tremendously. There are thousands of schools now who are engaging in a classical Christian education, and yet it's completely flown under the radar.
I mean, you think there'd be articles about this and major newspapers by now or something and, and there hasn't been, but it's all over the place now it's, it's a thing. And I, and I think that, I think that you're going to see as more people see what classical education is producing in terms of the, the students that are graduating from any of these programs who are articulate and intelligent and, and good in the moral sense, because they've thought very intentionally about what goodness is that, that you're going to see a big difference or Michael Ortner, who was the founder and owner of Capterra and then S S tech startup company who sold it a couple of years ago for about $250 million. He talks about how, you know, he, they used to get interns into their tech business, just, you know, entry-level positions. And, and they used to get kids from, from the local schools. And then he heard about this classical school and he started getting the students from there. He said, it ended up that I just got my students from this classical school because they were smart and they were articulate and they were versatile and they could do all kinds of different things.
You know, I don't think we give enough credit to just plain broad intelligence and, and, and that's what classical education is focused on. So I think you're going to have people more and more recognizes because public schools aren't doing well, they're doing very poorly. And they, you know, they're, they're not doing the things they need to do because as E.D. Hirsch, the education writer's pointed out, they've got a bad philosophy. They, they really don't believe in some of the traditional basic skills subjects. You know, we've had a hard time convincing public schools that they really need to be teaching phonics. And, and it's kind of a thing, right? That'll go out, you know, as soon as it goes out of fashion, we'll be back to doing these other things, you know, being able to learn basic arithmetic and to master it, you can't even get that done in a lot of schools these days. And, and what classical education has done, it's taken, you know, that, that kind of traditional emphasis on the basic skills, which was there in the old classical education too.
And it's wedded it with this idea that we should focus on the best that has been thought and said. And so, so we, you know, we, that's why we teach the classics. We were looking at the best that has been thought and said, and you just can't go wrong with an educational like that.
No, no, you can't. Well, let's talk specifically to homeschoolers, homeschoolers, homeschool moms, right now, you know, maybe they don't even identify as classical educators, but they're intrigued by this idea of this broad education. And you know, I'm going to tell you out in the homeschooling world, I don't know if it's because it's, you know, a fad or a buzzword or whatever, but there's a, there's a lot of information on how to bring STEM into your home school and why you should bring STEM into your homeschool. So, as we're thinking about, we're intrigued by the idea of prioritizing liberal arts in our homeschool, even with this STEM pressure out there, what are some very practical things we can do?
Well, for one thing, I'm sitting here at Highlands Latin school talking to you right now, which was founded in 2000 and we have three campuses now over 700 kids here. And then we, we own, and we only go four days a week. We have the homeschoolers come in on Mondays for our cottage school. And most of the interesting thing is despite the fact that they're, they're studying Latin, they're translating Virgil and the 10th or 11th grade. Most of our graduates go into technical disciplines. They're going into engineering, they're going into computer science and they're much better fit for it than many of their peers. So it's kind of an ironic thing to say, but focusing on STEM is not going to make your child a better STEM worker.
Focusing more broadly is going to make your child a better STEM worker. Okay. And that's a hard thing for people really to get, get through their heads on this. They think you, you, it, you know, you point toward a thing if that's what you want them to do when you focus on that. And that's how to get there.
And, you know, and I've discovered this in education over and over and over again in education, the shortest distance between two points is not a straight line. It's kind of a crooked line. It may even be a circle. We need to be careful of narrowing our children not just because we're concerned about their vocation, but because we should be concerned about their humanity.
I mean, if we focus when we spend all our time on mathematics and on science, they're not going to learn important things. The things that really matter in life when it comes right down to it, they're not going to be able to focus on those things on our relationships with other people on how we live a meaningful life, you know, because that's really what we're all after.
But we all, we keep focusing on the means, the means that we think we're are going to be best for getting there, like making a lot of money in a job that all comes, you know, with a classical education, you get, you get everything you, and you get the STEM stuff to is my point.
Okay. So give me just like a few ideas of something you could do. If you've been a little bit STEM focused, how can you kind of, re-engage your kids into, you know, even when you have young kids, like third, fourth, fifth grade, re-engage them with some of these, some of these other topics that would make a more well-rounded student.
Well, I'll just, you know, I'll tell you what basically a classical education consists of. I mean, you know, it's, it's, it's no different from, you know, traditional education in the early grades. You don't learn how to read, learn how to figure, learn how to write, you know, get all those things on your belt. So you can start the liberal arts in the third grade. You know, then you can start studying grammar, you know, grammar. Cheryl Lowe our founder here used to say that grammar is not a grammar stage subject. It's actually a, a logic state subject cause it's very analytic. You can't really do it until about the third grade. And the way we do it is through Latin itself. Okay. This is one of the things that is hard. Even, even I'm saying this, but not all classical people would even say this, but, but we've found this to be true. And that is that you can't just do Latin as a supplement. It doesn't do you much good. But if you make it the center of your language program, it does a great deal. It teaches you that your academic vocabulary, you know, big words, more learned words are almost, you know, are, are heavily Latinate. So you'll, if you learn Latin, you will see a word you've never seen before. And you know what it means. It also teaches you grammar. It's hard to learn grammar in your own language, particularly in English, because it's such a, an unusual language in terms of its difficulty in irregularities in it, you need a, you need a language that is, is a foreign language, so that you'll see the grammar objectively instead of having to, having to back into what you kind of already know. And you one that's inflected that has the noun and adjective inflections, so that you can see how nouns work. You can know the case system. We try to teach that through sentence diagrams is why we have those never works.
You see it in Latin because you don't see it in English. You see it in Latin. And, and then finally, a regular foreign language is the best thing to learn grammar. And because you don't have to deal with all these irregularities, Latin is very regular. The rules almost always apply. And then Latin is a great thinking skills subject. You know, this is what this connected with this whole STEM issue is I hear people talking as if thinking skills is a STEM thing. Well, excuse me, but logic is not a STEM thing. Logic is a language art in the old system. And the, the, the thinking skills that you want, the best thinking skills program is the traditional liberal arts grammar, logic, rhetoric, arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music. There's your, there's the old thinking skills program. And it worked. And that's why nobody talked about the problem of thinking skills until we abandoned the liberal arts. Now, we talk about it all the time, because we don't have a thinking skills program. What you learn in the grammar of an inflected language is the two basic thinking skills analysis and synthesis making distinctions and seeing resemblances contrast and comparison.
That's just, I'm just restating the same thing. That's what you learn in an, in, in the study of an inflected grammar, which is my theory of why students who study Latin do better on the college board. You know, the SAT tests than other kids is because all the SAT is measuring his thinking skills. Really it's an aptitude test, but it's measuring thinking skills.
And if you look at the studies, they put out every year, the college board on how kids do, who studied different languages. You see Latin is always, almost always number one or two. And the other language is on. There are also these inflected languages with these noun and adjective inflections. The study of an inflected language is the best thinking skill study you can do on the language side of your curriculum.
In addition to the math you're doing on the other parts of the liberal arts learning, how to think pretty basic. And then, you know, so, so you're doing that from, you know, starting in third grade, we recommend a study of Latin to be the core of your language arts program. While you're reading to your children, I'm a big read aloud advocate and just familiarizing them with this just treasury of great children's literature that we have in English.
And then in high school, you know, things do revert a little bit to the traditional scheme. You know, you gotta, if you want to do science, you got to do biology and chemistry and those sorts of things. But, but only after you've done some nature study for a little while to just know the things that are in this world, what creation is made up of before you start taking it apart in those high school science subjects. And so, you know, math and science, which we already have a pretty good idea of what that curriculum looks like, but we've really dropped off. This has been the emphasis in classical education is the language part of the curriculum, because that's where we've probably regressed.
We progressed on math and science, but we've regressed in language. And so classical education has really tried to reemphasize the whole language and humanities side of the curriculum.
Yeah. Yeah. I love that. It's funny. I thought I knew English grammar until I took Russian in college. Yeah.
That's, that's an inflected language and you had to learn those, those, those now declensions. Right. But the thing, I mean, in, in Latin, let me just, let me just talk about one simple exercise that you do in Latin and what it does to try to match an adjective to the now. And it modifies, you know, the good man homo bonus in Latin, when you match an adjective to announce, here's what you got to know. You got to know which of the five Latin nouns it is that you're dealing with, which of the two Latin adjectives you're dealing with. And then you've got to match each in case there's five gender there's three and number there's two there's about somebody counted 17 mental steps. You have to go through just to match an adjective with the noun in Latin and students learn to do it almost instantaneously. You know, that that's the kind of exercise you get in, in something like that, that people don't value in that.
Yeah. And it's funny, just hearing you talk about, we now have to think of critical thinking as an extra subject, you know, the whole, we've got to hide this critical thinking workbook. We've got to add this into our curriculum, into our school day. If we would Go back to the original critical thinking, you wouldn't have to do that extra subject.
Well, I like to scandalize people and say, well, what kind of thinking skills program do you have Latin? Let's see what they say, you know?
Oh, goodness, love it, love it. And yes, I totally agree about grammar being more analytical.
You know, we actually even started a little bit later than third grade because it's like you're using a lot of the same logical skills to do grammar that you use to do algebra it's, it's the same kind of processes.
Well, that's the thing, you know, I go to these homeschool conventions and I, and I know that half the mothers in the hall in the exhibit hall are looking for a systematic language study, following phonics. And there isn't one, you know, language, we, we think language is really subjective, but it's not, there is an underlying grammar that controls everything in every language and studying a foreign language helps you to see that much better, particularly Latin, because it's so regular. And, and what that does is give your language, the language side of your curriculum, a backbone, just like you already have in your sciences with math. You know, it's the equivalent of math, but I have mothers who say, well, you know, when do I start your logic program? And I'll say, well, or what, what can I do? What can I do before I start your logic program in seventh, eighth or ninth grade?
What other thinking skills, subject programs should I be using? And I'll say math and Latin math and Latin.
It probably throws them for a loop.
Sure. Not used to thinking that way, but if you go back to the traditional curriculum and I'm by that, I, you know, cause we were doing classical education in this country until about the 1920s when Dewey's reforms came in and, and the, and the vocational reforms of other people came in. And if you look back, you know, they weren't thinking about this the way we think about it. They were, they were doing Latin and Greek because they were, they needed to know those in order to read the great books, because that's what they were written in. Well, in comes, the English translations. And everyone says, Oh, well, I guess we don't need those anymore. And in fact there were a whole lot of other benefits to it that we didn't realize back then, but we're starting to realize now.
Very much, so yeah. The original thinking education for sure how far we've come. Well, Martin, thank you so much for joining me here today to talk about this.
And this is a really fascinating topic. Where can people find out more information about what memoria press has to offer? An maybe even if they're intimidated about teaching Latin can find some help for that.
Sure. Yeah. When our programs are very much geared toward people who don't know the subject, we write for a homeschooling mother. And so you come to a Memoriapress.com and, and sign up for our classical teacher magazine. It's a very, it's, it's, it's our, I call it a magalogue it's our product catalog, but it's set up like a magazine and we have articles in there, helpful articles, every issue that people really find interesting. We've got a big fan club for that magazine and I read.
Yep. Yep. Very much so. Yep. I will recommend that when I get it in the mail every few months and enjoy it. So there you go. Okay. All right. Well, thanks so much.
Well, thank you, Pam.
And there you have it. Now, if you would like links to any of the books and resources that Martin and I talked about today,
you can find them on the show notes for this episode of the podcast. That's at Pambarnhill.com/YMB86. And we're also going to include a link to our free community over there. So you can come and join us in the, your morning basket community and discuss this particular podcast. And anything else you've got on your mind that has to do with morning baskets or homeschooling.
I will be back again in a couple of weeks with a, another great interview. This one is with Jennifer Stowe. She has a homeschooling mom who owns her own tea room in Tennessee. And for years she and her family has been doing tea time in their homeschool. She has some fabulous ideas about how to do tea time in your homeschool. Some really interesting tidbits about the history of tea, where it came from such a fascinating conversation. It's just going to be kind of a breath of fresh air for wintertime. So we'll be back again with that one in two weeks and until then keep seeking truth, goodness and beauty in your homeschool.

Key Ideas about Liberal Arts Education

The goals of classical education are both individual and cultural. On an individual level, the aim is to
bring the child into wisdom and virtue. On a cultural level, it is to pass on the culture of the Christian
west to the next generation.

The world of education has been highly focused on the area of STEM, science, technology,
engineering, and math in recent years. Many are beginning to focus on this in an attempt to make
students more employable in our highly technological world. But, specialization in a narrow area of
study doesn’t necessarily make a person more equipped for a job. Having broader training is actually
much better.

Focusing on language in classical education is one of the best tools for preparing students for a
variety of career opportunities. Studying language, especially Latin, is great for developing strong
thinking skills. And, studying language will enhance a student’s ability to be an effective

Find what you want to hear:

  • [2:36] meet Martin Cothran
  • [5:24] goals of Classical education
  • [8:41] the difference between classical and liberal arts education
  • [11:24] defining STEM and why it’s being emphasized now
  • [19:26] when a child shows interest in STEM
  • [21:12] importance of focusing on language as the primary liberal art
  • [23:58] reclaiming liberal education and the future
  • [27:26] practical ways to bring liberal arts education to your homeschool
  • [30:35] making a more well-rounded student

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Thanks for your reviews

  • Morning time will change your life
    by RachBoz from United States

    I’ve listened to YMB and Pam off and on for years, and she literally changed my life 7 years ago when I was just starting to homeschool. I’m so thankful for her ministry and encouragement to homeschool moms of all ages! I highly recommend doing morning time!

  • Life Affirming
    by Logandinco66 from United States

    This podcast is amazing and has helped me so much as recovering perfectionist homeschooling mama! Pam gives so much great insight into so many aspects of life and focusing on homeschooling.

  • Life giving!
    by lapatita5 from United States

    This podcast has been so great. It’s so practical and encouraging without being overly preachy or narrow. It gives ideas in a take-what-fits kind of way. I have used many of the recommended resources and ideas mentioned and been inspired by many others. Even the episodes that I found less relevant to me specifically, often had tidbits that I could use. Pam’s podcasts, books, and resources have been a godsend to me in my beginning years of homeschooling, helping me discover my own way to teach my kids in a way that prioritizes what is most important to us.

  • You've made my school year!
    by Lizzie O' from United States

    Pam, My children are almost 11 and 13 and I never sent this review in! I found it sitting here. This is testimony that I am still so blessed by this podcast years later. So here it is: I wrote you an email when I first felt it placed on my heart to homeschool my now 6

  • Love the show!
    by Startup Travis from United States

    Love your content and the guests you have visiting the show! I am a huge believer in using the morning hours well. Thank you for your direction and products!

  • Enjoy the podcast & some thoughts…
    by rufocused from United States

    I enjoy listening to tips on starting and using morning time as I am just starting it this year. We have kind of done it in the past, but when you only have one child you tend to just call it bible, story time, etc… but now that my second one is old enough to join we’re going to have more of a true morning time. I did notice Pam mentioned CNN ten in one episode. CNN can be pretty liberal biased in the main news, I’m not sure if they curb that in the “CNN ten”, but thought I would mention the Daily Wire, which is from a conservative viewpoint (and often covers indoctrination in public schools) and could be fun to compare and contrast with CNN. Our family also recently discovered Daily Citizen from Focus on the Family which has a very Christian perspective, which has been refreshing as news can be so depressing sometimes! Just thought I’d throw that out there… but really do appreciate the perspectives and insights of these women who have been doing this for awhile!

  • Very helpful and pleasant to listen to.
    by Heather homeschooler from United States

    I have listened to many episodes of this podcast and have highly recommended it to others. It has been a wonderful source of inspiration and encouragement. Pam has a great voice and presence and I love that she does not interrupt or talk over her guests. Thank you for your hard work!

  • Always insightful!!
    by method_money from Canada

    Pam always has great great guests who bring great insights and encouragement! I so appreciate her down to earth style and ability to ask great questions! Keep up the great work!!

  • A wildly encouraging and equipping podcast for homeschool families.
    by Eryn Lynum from United States

    As a homeshool mama of four (Ages 2-9), Pam's podcast has been an increidble encouragement to me. Not only that, but I have discovered so many helpful resources for focusing on what is lovely and true during our homeschool days. I love that it is not overwhelming in nature, but instead a gentle help for moving forward one day at a time in our homeschooling adventure.

  • Best podcast for homeschooling/variety of topics
    by Bethetal from United States

    I love this podcast for so many reasons. (1) Pam is friendly, funny, humble and kind (2) She covers a multitude of topics (one at a time)- I have learned about nature notebooks, classical music study, narration, living books, Shakespeare and so much more. Whenever I have a question about a new (to me)HS term or practice, I come here to listen to Pam interview someone about it. Her interviewees have all been all-in on their respective areas of interest/expertise and I love the way she interviews/asks questions to really let the guests shine as they speak. I have changed the structure of my homeschool, found books for my kids and me, purchased materials, and found inspiration due to this podcast and I can’t recommend it enough! This podcast has shaped my homeschool in so many positive ways, most of which I probably can’t even articulate yet, as the changes have been done inside of me. Thanks, Pam!

  • Great!!!
    by Eloblah from United States

    I love the variety of things that are talked about on this show for homeschooling - things that I would never even think about including or doing - with easy ways to do them. Very much recommend this podcast

  • New home schooling mom
    by A prit from United States

    I am listening to the past episodes and loving it. This podcast has helped me develop my own homeschool. So many ideas!! I love morning time so much, we do a nightly family time so my husband and public school attending son. We do all the things instead of watching tv, playing ps4, and YouTube. My kids hang around me every evening asking if we are doing family time. I can tell they love it but don’t want to admit it.

  • Morning Time Magic!
    by DrewSteadman from United States

    I am so excited Pam is back to her morning time focus for 2020. Our homeschool has been shaped by the rich ideas and practical wisdom shared here.

  • Yay! Morning time is back!
    by Homeschooler in Germany from United States

    I was so happy and excited to learn that Pam is shifting her focus back to Morning Time for 2020! I’ve missed the morning time exclusive podcast and can’t wait to hear her back in my earbuds.

  • So excited for 2020!
    by JCrutchf from United States

    I absolutely LOVE this podcast and was so disappointed when I realized you were not actively producing it! I’m NOW relieved to know there is a whole year of episodes ahead! I’m beginning my homeschool journey with 4 little ones very close in age and my style falls somewhere in the Classical and Charlotte Mason. I found your podcast by chance via Instagram recommendation as I was doing research on “morning menus.” Your content is beautifully philosophical but at a level most parents will be able to grasp and appreciate. Filled with truth, beauty, and goodness! Your episodes fill me up and leave me feeling inspired personally and in regards to my children’s education. Everything is so good! Please don’t stop producing ever again! I’ll be grateful forever!

  • So glad Your Morning is back!!!
    by alissajohn2020 from United States

    So glad to have the morning basket podcast back! Thank you for bringing it back!!

  • So good I ran out of gas.
    by JoanieHummel from United States

    This podcast is awesome! It was recommended to me a few years ago by a very wise and experienced homeschool mom but I didn’t start listening until I saw it come up a few more times on Facebook, recommended in various groups (in particular, episode number 41). I wish I had picked it up years ago! So much great information, I’m learning so much! Be careful though, I was so interested listening to this podcast that I didn’t notice how low my gas tank was getting! I ran out of gas and as I write this review I’m stranded on the side of the road waiting for a friend to come rescue me! Happy listening!

  • Knowledge Goldmine
    by A.J. Edwards from United States

    I’ve just been eating up every episode of this brilliant podcast over the past few months. The guests are stellar and Pam’s interview style is wonderful. She gets each guest to the meat and potatoes of their topic but it’s anything but a plain meal. This is a feast for the homeschool mom’s mind. I know I’ll be revisiting many of my favorite episodes again and again. Feeling so inspired by each guest!

  • Myths and fairytale truths for homeschoolers
    by Allierhn from United States

    Mind blown! I’m listening to the myth podcast and it’s absolutely perfect. It is answering so many questions I’ve struggled with my whole life. It helps me to view our curriculum and informs my teaching so much more.

  • Super Helpful!
    by Jennlee C from United States

    I can’t speak highly enough about this podcast. It has been a huge inspiration and a practical help to my homeschool! Thank you so much Pam Barnhill and everyone else who contributes to this. It has been an amazing blessing to me and my children… And possibly generations to come!

  • Practical Inspiration
    by Mamato3activeboys from Australia

    Not only am I inspired by each episode of this podcast but I have actually put so many of the ideas into practice in our own morning time. Such a huge help as I seek to inspire my non-stop boys to truth, goodness and beauty. We are now memorising poetry as they jump on the trampoline and they love Shakespeare. That's a parenting win in my book!

  • So many great ideas!
    by Parent 98765 from Malaysia

    Thank you, Pam! I’m now bursting with inspiration and can’t wait to start our 2019 school year with a strong morning time routine.

  • Joy
    by Ancon76 from United States

    My heart is enriched and I can’t wait to learn more.

  • Just what I was looking for!
    by Joey5176 from United States

    I was looking for morning basket ideas—simple ones. These podcasts are giving me a picture of a good morning basket.

  • Wow!! What amazing nuggets of knowledge
    by HeRo84 from United States

    This is truly life changing information for me as a homeschool mother. Thank you Pam for this amazing series.

  • Love it!
    by s chenvmv from United States

    I love all of Pam’s podcast but this one is prob my favorite. I love to listen to all her guest and see the different ways a morning time can be done

  • Excellent
    by W.A., R.A. Hall from United States

    Love this!

  • Love, love, love this show
    by SarahPMiller from United States

    And I'm not even a homeschooling mother! But I've created a Morning Time for my children nonetheless, and I wouldn't have been inspired to do it -- nor could I have done it -- without this podcast. It's my favorite, and I get something out of every single episode.

  • Wonderful resource!
    by honebubble from United States

    This podcast has changed what I thought I could offer my children, my family and myself... I never would have believed that it would be possible to live a life as so many people actually do. Thank you for these tools and for what you do to help women, teachers, moms and all those on this path. You are amazing and I just can’t get enough, each episode teaches me so much!! Thank you again!

  • A wonderful podcast!
    by NoName2018 from Canada

    Great ideas and interesting guests - thanks Pam!!

  • Insightful, Inspiring, Life-Giving Podcast
    by Mackenziechester from United States

    I love this podcast. It has turned cleaning my kitchen into a really valuable part of my day. There are great tips here for gathering your family together and finding ways to share the things you are passionate about but can never quite find the time to fit in to a typical school day. So many ideas, so many varied topics. Great, inspiring guests. Life-changing podcast. Thanks so much for sharing these ideas!

  • Such great choices of guests
    by andinic from United Kingdom

    This podcast is inspirational for your homeschool plans. Pam Barnhill has a delightful interviewing style and her guests share their insights and enthusiasm for their topics. Among my favourites are the episodes with Cindy Rollins, and Angelina Stanford. Don’t miss this encouraging podcast!

  • Great
    by WifeyKayla from United States

    Some great interviews and very helpful for figuring out the flow of our mornings.

  • Interesting ideas
    by Lisa1932 from Canada

    Just started this podcast. There are some very interesting ideas here on how to create quality time with your children, learning together and focusing on the things that are most important in life. Great hearing other moms' stories too.

  • WARNING: This podcast will revolutionize your homeschool!
    by JoysTeacher from United States

    Honestly, I started listening to this podcast because I had run out of other homeschool podcasts to listen. I really didn't think we needed a morning time! I homeschool one teen daughter and I thought the concept was too "baby" for us. WOW! I was completely wrong!! We needed a morning time, and it has changed the climate and the productivity of our homeschool. The habit was so important to us, we still do morning time when we are one break. (And neither of us is a "morning" person). Pam is an talented interviewer and will not waste your time (her time is precious, too)!

  • Excellent!
    by Jodylleigh from United States

    I'm really enjoying the ideas and tips Pam bring up in this podcast!

  • Truly an inspiration!
    by Soaring2him from United States

    I have started a morning basket just because of listening to this podcast. Pam sold me on the beauty of having a morning basket. I love all of the ideas I've gleaned from listening and I've implemented many of the ideas I have heard about through this podcast. It's really helped simplify some things in our homeschool day!

  • Easy to listen too, incredibly practical
    by HarrisFamily0323 from United States

    I really enjoy Your Morning Basket. Pam is a great host and I have taken away many practical ideas and had many unrealistic expectations corrected. I don't listen to all the episodes, but the ones I've thought were pertinent to my needs and have been able to apply something helpful to our homeschool. Thanks Pam!

  • So helpful for this new homeschooling mom
    by klund08 from United States

    I'm planning our first homeschool year and have really enjoyed this podcast! The interviews are great and I enjoy hearing from different homeschooling moms and how things work in their family. I'm excited to start Morning Time with my kids!

  • You've made my school year!
    by Lizzie O' from United States

    Pam, I wrote you an email when I first felt it placed on my heart to homeschool my now 6 & 8 year old children and you responded with a warm response. I then began to listen to every podcast you have (all 3!) and I have been so very inspired and encouraged in so many ways that it would take up too much time here to explain it all. This Morning Basket podcast is really a light for me and my children as not only are they the recipients of our mornings of gathering but so am I. I have learned so much from your guests (and you!) and have been able to take tips/ideas to add to what my own mornings look like. We truly have experienced Truth, Goodness and Beauty. God certainly has chosen you for this type of work and serving to others. Thank you for what you do!

  • Thanks Pam!
    by BraveMomma from United States

    So many great ideas every single week! Thanks!

  • Truth, goodness, and beauty
    by I'm Sonny from United States

    Need I say more? I am deeply grateful for this profound and practical resource as we seek to surround our children in the truth, in goodness, and in things beautiful. I leave feeling encouraged, refreshed, determined and equipped.

  • Very encouraging
    by .....hk..... from United States

    So helpful with recommendations for new things to do in morning time.

  • A wonderful podcast full of useful tips!
    by Klarnold79 from United States

    I have listened to almost every episode over the last few months on my morning runs and they have made me look forward to running! I have learned so much and have been inspired to add truth, goodness and beauty to our homeschool days. Thank you so much!!

  • Wow! Talk about a solid series!
    by KastenbauerFamily from United States

    Each episode is fabulous alone, and when you've been listening for a while, they all continue to be full of new information!

  • Hope for the weary
    by MomToTheMasses from United States

    I enjoy the variety of topics covered as well as Pam's cheerful personality. Thank you for being a cup of cold water for so many homeschool mamas.

  • Great guests and host
    by My Life as a Rinnagade from United States

    I love the people Pam has on and all the great morning time tips! Thanks for a wonderful show :).

  • Mamma of Five
    by Mamma of Five from United States

    The ideas, information and encouragment that Pam shares through the different guests and talking about the purpose and practice of Your Morning Basket has been a huge blessing to our family. Helped me to practically see how to bring truth, beauty, and goodness to our day.

  • Great Homeschool Resource
    by KS Becky R from United States

    I have just started listening and am gaining so much knowledge and practical advice. I can't wait to keep listening to more.

  • Really great!
    by BeeGerW from United States

    I love hearing all these ideas!

  • californiafamily
    by californiafamily from United States

    I absolutely love Your Morning Basket podcasts. Pam interviews excellent people & so far, I've incorporated information from each podcast & have purchased many items that the interviewee's suggest. I think all families could benefit from this even if they don't homeschool! Thank you so much!

  • Love Pam's podcasts
    by Flourishing Mama from United States

    There are many homeschool related podcasts that I enjoy, both for their content and the host. But I must say that Pam Barnhill's podcasts are top-notch for the following reasons: 1) the content is both relevant AND in-depth, 2) she NEVER interrupts the guest speakers with incessant (annoying) "uh huhs," "ummms," and such, 3) she provides multiple lists and links to supplemental materials that are really useful and interesting, and 4) she shares forms she's created even though she could make you pay for them. She has a gift for tapping in to the issues homeschool moms are REALLY dealing with. Thanks Pam. Keep up the good work!

  • First Things First
    by Lukenoah from United States

    Every episode inspires me to start my day bringing my children the true the good and the beautiful through our family time.

  • So helpful!
    by jofcrich from Australia

    Every time I see that I have a new podcast from Pam Barnhill I know it's going to be good. Every one I have listened to (which is all of them!) have helped, inspired and encouraged me in some way or another. Pam is so good at summarising what her interviewee has just spoken about; a great knack which helps me distill the main ideas from all that good conversation. I really like that she always has links to whatever is discussed so that I can go back to it in the future and find what I need.

  • Great resource
    by Ejs0928 from United States

    Such a help for a new homeschooler. Highly recommend that you check it out if you'd like to learn more about starting your day with morning time.

  • Amazing!
    by CDefnall from United States

    This podcast is filled with great information to help you take full advantage of morning time or all together time in your homeschool. It also has great tips for extending your child education whether they are in public or private school as well. We all want to aid our kids in thier success and no matter if you are a homeschool parent or a public/private school teacher this podcast will enlighten you and provide valuable information you to to better help your students.

  • Inspiring and enlightening
    by spycej from United States

    One of my favorite podcasts and I love and subscribe to all of Pam's podcasts. Thank you for the fabulous interviews.

  • Must-Listen for Homeschooling Moms
    by DaffodilSocks from United States

    This podcast has revolutionized how I homeschool my young children. A must-listen.

  • One of my favorites
    by FaithAZ from United States

    Love Pam and all of her podcasts - can't wait for new episodes!

  • Great Ideas
    by Hiphooray from United States

    Just found this podcast and have been listening to them over the summer break. Pam is a great host and has fun guests and together they bring a lot of inspiration to the concept of morning time in homeschool. Thanks for the great resource!!

  • TaraVos
    by TaraVos from United States

    I would not be exaggerating if I said that I have learned so much from this practical, encouraging podcast that has changed our homeschool. Thank you Pam!

  • Lots of useful information
    by Kristizy from United States

    This podcast does a great job finding guests who give a ton of practical help to make morning time enjoyable and educational for everyone. I always feel reenergized after listening to any of Pam Barnhill's podcasts.

  • <3!!!
    by Momo35556 from United States

    I love this podcast! So helpful and encouraging.

  • Lovely & Inspiring
    by kashley75 from United States

    Thank you so much for this podcast!

  • Such a wealth of information!
    by Jeaine6 from United States

    There is so much wonderful information to be found in these podcasts. I can go about my daily chores and fill my homeschool mom cup simultaneously! They allow me to look at areas of our hs that need improvement or just need new life and feel encouraged while I'm listening. Thank you!!

  • Encouraging & inspiring
    by God's Ranch Hand from United States

    So thankful for this podcast! I look forward to listening to each episode when it comes out.

  • Homeschool Professional Development!
    by Jo.W.17 from Canada

    As a new-ish homeschooling mama, I've found this podcast super encouraging and helpful. I would highly recommend it!

  • So Helpful!
    by KGMom2Four from United States

    I love the practical application that comes from this podcast! Thanks!

  • A Lovely Show!
    by Webseitler from United States

    This podcast has become my most favorite podcast on the subject of homeschooling. The topics discussed often go right to the heart of why I'm doing what I'm doing in our home--and God has really used the great advice shared in this show to help me be a more confident (and calmer!) teacher. Thank you, Pam, for creating such a great program! Already looking forward to next season.

  • Awesome homeschooling resource!
    by Liddleladie81 from United States

    This podcast has absolutely changed my perspective on homeschooling, in a great way! All of the guests have been wonderful and I leave each episode feeling both sad that it is already over, and encouraged and excited to figure out how I can use what I’ve learned! It has a great flow to it, very light but meaningful, informative, encouraging….I could go on and on! Absolutely LOVE this podcast! Thanks to all involved!

  • Great hosts!
    by Homeschool_chat from United States

    I always look forward to this podcast!

  • Practical, helpful & concise tips
    by sproutnchic from United States

    This podcast continues to help. I appreciate the Pam Barnhill's professional, organized, yet warm interviewing style of some well-picked guests.

  • So refreshing and helpful
    by a. borealis from United States

    I've really appreciated the depth and breadth of Pam's look into Morning Time and also the practical ideas and tools to make it work. It is so inspiring! It helps me think through my own Circle Time, realizing what an opporunity I have. There are so many great ideas for additions and tweaking my approach. I am loving it.

  • Awesome!
    by Apples20091 from United States

    This podcast has been so helpful and packed full of practical ideas to use with my children!! Some of the episodes I have listened to more than once!!

  • Encouraging and Motivating!
    by Cat11223 from United States

    Pam makes this morning time concept so attainable! She gives great ideas but simple ways to begin. These tips and recommendations reach far beyond just morning time and are benefiting our entire homeschool and family life!

  • So many ideas!
    by Speterson781 from United States

    This podcast is full of amazing ideas to grab my kids attention first thing in the morning. I love listening to Pam and her guests. Pam asks such great questions of her guests!

  • A Favorite for Homeschool Encouragement!
    by JamesDWitmer from United States

    I have been so encouraged by Pam's podcasts on Morning Time. She walks you through many of the wonderful activities that you can choose to include in your homeschooling, and also the details about how to do it! It has truly been a blessing. Thanks Pam!

  • Perfect for the Homeschool Mom
    by JoshJamie from United States

    I just stumbled upon the "Your Morning Basket" podcast this weekend. I have already listened to 2 episodes, and they are wonderful - perfect for the homeschool mom. I am going to share this on my Periscope channel tomorrow. So great!! Jamie @OurLittleSchoolhouse.

  • SongsofJubilee
    by SongsofJubilee from United States

    I love the idea of a morning basket, and this podcast has helped me learn a lot about the different ways it can look! I love all the different subjects she discusses within it!

  • Love it!
    by Ekrasovec7 from United States

    This podcast has been such a blessing to me! Informational and insightful, it opens a window into how other families incorporate morning time into their day, as well as what they fill it with. This has completely changed the rhythm and content of our days for the better. Our whole family has fallen in love with morning time! Thank you!!

  • So encouraging!
    by A Merry Heart from United States

    I absolutely love this podcast! It has been so encouraging as I begin to implement Morning Time with my 5 girls. I have listened to them all & can't wait for more!

  • This podcast has changed our homeschool
    by Momof4athome from United States

    Pam has relieved some of the pressure to "get it all in". We now begin our day with the good true and beautiful in an almost effortless way and are all enjoying our time together before the "serious" subjects! Yay for the morning basket! Her guests are all lovely people you would want to have over for tea. I love this podcast.

  • Refreshing
    by Bless-Us-3 from Canada

    I am loving this podcast. I just stumbled across it after hearing the recommendation over at Read Aloud Revival. I have been wanting to start 'Morning Time' for a year now so this is giving me direction and so many wonderful and helpful tips and suggestions. I love Pam's enthusiasm and personality.

  • So helpful and inspiring!
    by KSR1 from United States

    I was lucky enough to find YMB and Pam’s other podcast, Homeschool Snapshots, when I started my first year of homeschool this year. These 2 podcasts have been SO helpful to me with getting ideas for morning time and the rest of our homeschool day. I am very grateful for the excellent work Pam has done on both of these podcasts, and I hope they continue for many more years!

  • Inspiring
    by Jaranda98 from United States

    This podcast was inspiring and encouraging. It was a good blend of practical and theoretical and exactly what this tired homeschool mom needed to hear today to rejuvenate.

  • An inspiring and encouraging podcast
    by Kellibird1111 from United States

    Very well done! I really enjoyed listening! Very practical and informative.

  • Honey for the Homeschooling Heart
    by SuperNOVAmom from United States

    Pam lays out a feast of homeschooling topics that are relevant, helpful, and validating. The show is well organized and her interviews are clearly well thought out. In addition, Ms. Barnhill's relaxed and warm personality puts one at ease. It's like going to your favorite homeschool conference without leaving home!

  • I love this podcast, great content!
    by Sara V from United States

    These podcasts helped transform our homeschooling!

  • Great parenting resource
    by sullivanjessicak from United States

    I absolutely love this podcast. The show is well organized with great guests and helpful information.

  • Thank you!
    by Nasiatel from United States

    I'm so happy that I found your podcast, it has truly blessed our homeschool life!

  • Wonderful help in my homeschool
    by BT and Jessica from United States

    This is a great resource for all homeschoolers (and I would say any educator). I am challenged to make sure I am giving my children truth, beauty and virtue through the morning ritual of our morning time. I’ve learned of new books to share with my children, how to incorporate fine arts, good habits for our day… I could go on and on. Pam asks great questions and has wonderful guests.

  • Top Notch
    by Wvshaddox from United States

    Excellent inspiration and tips for homeschoolers! I have learned so much from this podcast.

  • Great Morning Time tips!
    by redhedcatie from United States

    I have gotten SO many practical tips from this podcast! A must listen for homeschoolers!

  • So Inspiring!
    by Frau Linds from United States

    Another home-run podcast! Pam has a knack for inspiring great things in your homeschool! And the wonderful thing is she doesn't leave you with the "lofty ideal," but offers practical tips, aids, etc. all while encouraging you the whole way. Each interview is professionally done and such a joy to listen to! Thanks, Pam, for putting your heart into this! 🙂

  • Wonderful!
    by Kellybireta from United States

    Like having a cup of coffee with a friend. So helpful and informative.

  • Excellent practical advise!
    by Foxycook from United States

    Really enjoying this so far!

  • Very encouraging!
    by WMGardener from United States

    This was been a great podcast about Morning Time! How encouraging and informative to hear from other homeschool moms who are in the midst of it all!

  • A great resource!
    by gejake from United States

    Very inspiring and informative as I begin my homeschooling journey

  • Love This Podcast
    by Earthmuffins from United States

    I have finally had opportunity to listen to this podcast and regret not doing it sooner!!! Very informative and encouraging.

  • Full of Goodness, Truth and Beauty
    by CJMance from United States

    This is such an inspiration to get the beautiful ritual of morning time established. Thank you Pam!

  • Great Podcast!
    by Greggtrisha from United States

    I'm so excited about this podcast! My kids range from ages 4 - 11, and I've been needing to reduce my workload a bit. I'm using the fantastic things I'm learning here to combine all my kids together for read-alouds, Bible time, memorization, and some other fun things. Thanks so much, Pam! I love your other podcast as well!

  • Treasure
    by TasmanianBec from Australia

    I am so glad I found this podcast. Morning Basket / Circle Time / Morning Time - lots of interviews with families who make this part of their day a treasure for years to come. Just getting started homeschooling, and this is going to help shape our days. Thanks Pam.

  • Jeannie in Ohio
    by Jeannie in Ohio from United States

    Loving learning about how so many families are using Morning Time in their homes!

  • Wonderful ideas for creating your best morning time.
    by Flowerpetal2 from Australia

    The ideas presented here are wonderful, it's great to hear how different families put together their morning time and how we can all make this a rich but simple time of beauty in our schooling days.

  • Excellent Host
    by meghanlou from United States

    Pam Barnhill is a truly excellent host and producer of podcasts. They are a pleasure to listen to, full of applicable and inspirational content. Unlike other podcasts in this genre, which are produced at home, Pam's podcasts never make me cringe because of awkward pauses or bad sound quality. Another of Pam's strengths is her ability to reflectively listen and summarize what she's heard from her guests in a way that wraps up the different segments of her interviews. Well done, Pam!

  • Helpful and fun!
    by HornGal88 from United States

    We’re just starting out with morning time and this podcast has been an invaluable source of inspiration and ideas. Keep up the good work!

  • LOVE IT!
    by sassercj from United States

    I’m always counting down the days until the next podcast…one of the best homeschooling podcasts out there!

  • Among the Best I’ve Heard
    by More Like Mary from United States

    I’m a bit of a podcast junkie so when I say that this is among the best, that’s really a compliment! Pam is an excellent interviewer. She re-states main ideas and summarizes information in a way that is helpful and not condescending. She asked poignant questions and stays on topic. Her guests are phenomenal and I’ve learned so much from each episode. So far, this podcast is “big picture” homeschooling talk with lots of tips for implementing lofty ideals into daily life. The perfect combination. I will be looking forward to many more of these!

  • Gave me the tools I needed!
    by Momofmany:) from United States

    This podcast is amazing. (I am spoiled now; the quality alone is superb!) I have listened to the four current episodes several times and now understand "morning time" in a way I never have before-- in particular, the schole part. I've longed for restful learning for ten years, and now I have tools to actually do it. Our whole family has benefitted so much. Thank you, Pam!!

  • What’s important
    by sncstraub from United States

    Pam Barnhill’s new podcast on Morning Time is a great help to those of us who are homeschooling. I’ve only listened to the first episode so far, but it’s wonderfully encouraging to hear Cindy Rollins’ talking through her own experiences with Morning Time. I’m looking forward to listening to more episodes with others who are focusing their schools on the important things - the true, good, and beautiful.

  • New listener and hooked!
    by Bytesofmemory from United States

    I just started listening to the first podcast this morning and I am completely hooked on this podcast. I took the advice in the first podcast and just started with morning time. Instead of trying to “give birth to an adult” morning time I just started doing something and will add things in as this becomes a habit. Thanks for the wonderful tool!! I am now off to listen to episode 2!!

  • Great!
    by Wvshaddox from United States

    Encouragement for homeschool.

  • A Gift to the Homeschool Community
    by HGPII from United States

    This podcast is so well done, informative, and just what the homeschooling moms needs. It includes achievable, sound suggestions as well as an abundant dose of inspiration. I can’t wait to revamp my Morning Time and watch the results!

  • Encouraging and informative!
    by sarahdempsen from United States

    I have enjoyed Your Morning Basket from its first episode! I am a second generation homeschooler and just started our own family's homeschooling journey. Thanks to YMB, I implemented our "circle time" starting our second week of school and it has been such a blessing to me already even its very simple form of prayer, Psalm, Mother Goose, and then read-aloud time with my kindergartner. My 2 and 4 year olds also love it and it encourages me to include things in our day that might get left out, like nursery rhymes and simple children's songs! Thanks to Pam and YMB I feel like I am starting out with a great centering tool and routine that can be expanded and adapted as we grow!

  • A great resource!
    by Bookgirl630 from United States

    Your Morning Basket Podcast is a great resource for to help implement morning time into your homeschool day. I have enjoyed every episode so far.

  • Thank you for wonderful bonus at the end!
    by Caj312 from United States

    I just discovered this show and listened to the first 4 episodes. All were inspiring and I loved the useful links at the end of the show that help me improve my homeschool days! Well done and I look forward to the next episode.

  • One of my VERY favorites
    by Dianna @ The Kennedy Adventure from United States

    I’m a bit of a podcast junkie, but YMB ranks among my very, very favorites. If you’re a homeschooling mother, or a mom who wants to connect with your children and show them truth, goodness and beauty, this is a must listen. Kudos, Pam, on a another amazing podcast series.

  • Timely
    by AggieRudy3 from United States

    I’ve been trying to figure out morning time on my own, but Pam with this podcast has figuratively sat down with me and explained how to get things going. I’m so glad to have this resource at the beginning of my family's homeschool journey! The Basket Bonuses have also been so helpful.

  • Thanks!
    by heyh2 from United States

    Thanks for the new podcast. Loving it!

  • Wonderful podcast with practical advice
    by Victorzvaliant from United States

    Thank you Pam for a great podcast, I am really enjoying it. I always come away inspired and with ideas I can use!

  • Changed our Homeschool Morning routine
    by HeatherinSC from United States

    I have been listening to the Your Morning Basket podcasts recently and Pam's blog writings about creating morning time traditions with your children and I feel like it has made a huge positive difference in our homeschool. I love Pam's ideas for creating a restful learning environment and focusing on truth, goodness, and beauty as we begin our day together. I listen to these podcasts over and over and take notes!

  • Excellent for homeschooling veterans and newbies
    by ASnow512 from United States

    I'm very new to homeschooling and I'm still deciding if our family will pursue that path. This podcast has been such a wealth of information and a wonderful encouragement!

  • Inspiring and Uplifting
    by vabjohnson from United States

    I was immediately inspired to create a more cohesive structure to our homeschool mornings. This podcast is full of helpful suggestions to make morning time meaninful for every type of homeschooling family. I've already implemented many of the wonderful suggestions and I can already see the benefits! An absoulte must for the homeschooling family!

  • Bringing Joy
    by Louisiana Mommy T from United States

    What an amazing podcast! This podcast has wonderful suggestions for bringing joy to (or back to) your homeschool. Everything is doable and enjoyable for the children and parents alike. Keep up the wonderful work!

  • Great podcast!
    by corew50 from United States

    This is our first year of homeschooling and I am really enjoying the concept of morning time. It is a sweet way to start our day together and this podcast has been amazing! Enjoyable, super practical, and filled with lots of creative ideas. Thanks for creating it.

  • Inspiring, yet practical
    by mamato3cs from United States

    Pam's Your Morning Basket podcast is one not to be missed! She and her guests inspire and spur me on to do great things in our homeschool, but it's not just adding more to my to-do list. There are practical suggestions for how to make morning time a refreshing and vital part of our day.

  • Super Helpful & Encouraging
    by Sanibel4ever from United States

    I have been homeschooling for a many years. I like that I can count on Pam to make to make it worth my while (and my short amount of time!) for a listen. As always, practical info I can start using right away.

  • Great Poscast
    by Sarah B R from United States

    Love Pam's interviews. I learn much from each poscast!

  • A Joy to Listen to!
    by Cude 🙂 from United States

    I am thoroughly enjoying this new podcast! I love to listen to people who encourage me on my homeschooling journey and I have added Your Morning Basket to my list.

  • JUST what I needed!!!
    by Foodie in Training from United States

    This is our first year homeschooling (Kinder) and this podcast has been INCREDIBLY helpful and a GREAT source of information!!! I cannot wait for more to come! <3 THANK YOU!!!!

  • Practical - worth a listen!
    by Bloggerific! from United States

    As a homeschooling mom of 6, my free time is limited. But I always come away with some practical, useful tips from Pam Barnhill. I love to listen if I’m alone in the car (rare these days!).

  • Well done [FIRST NAME]
    by MattMcWilliams from United States

    WOW… Your Morning Basket Podcast is flat out awesome. Good production quality. Easy to listen. Very impressed Pam. Keep bringing it.

  • Inspiring and refreshing!
    by BugTurner from United States

    What a great podcast. At first I was dubious whether you could have an entire podcast series about homeschooling using morning time, but now that I have listened to two of them, I see where Pam is going with this. It is affirming for me in what I am trying to do in our homeschool, and at the same time inspires me in ways to improve and refine our time together as a homeschooling family. I would recommend this to anyone who is looking to simplify their homeschool efforts while simultaneously enriching their family's experience!

  • Brilliant
    by SHTirm from United Kingdom

    I absolutely love it. Ever since I read about morning time, I wanted to know more. This podcast clearly explains what to do and how to do it. Episode with Cindy Rollins was brilliant. It gives you the overall idea of morning time practice, as she is doing it for 27 years. Andrew Pudewa in second episodes shared some insights about memorisation, which really makes so much sense. Pam asks clear questions and then repeats the main points in answer, which is very helpful, especially for new homeschooling mums. Overall this programme has everything one can ask for to get inspired and motivated. Thanks very much for putting so much effort. Well done.

  • Excellent!
    by RC5476 from United States

    I have really appreciated everything Pam Barnhill puts out. I have been introduced to so many great homeschoolers and their resources through The Homeschool Snapshots podcast, and I love that she is digging deeper into a great homeschooling practice on her new show, Morning Basket. It is definitely on my Must Listen list each week!

  • Bring the best you to your homeschool
    by mystiewinckler from United States

    Our Morning Time is the best part of our homeschool, and Pam’s podcast helps us learn how to make it even better and encourages us to pursue the true, good, and beautiful still more. So helpful!

  • Inspiring!
    by Mamato8 from United States

    I've only recently found out about Morning Baskets, after 14 years of homeschooling. What a find! And now to have these podcasts to help guide me along on my new journey! I've been sharing this like crazy, and my morning routine is fabulous now! Thank You!

  • Education to Educate
    by Isaac in St Louis from United States

    I have gained so much from these first two early podcasts. I am grateful to you, Pam. Thank you for offering this as we strive to fulfill our sacred duty and privilege to give our children an education. Please continue. I see such great things coming from this. I rank this up their with Circe’s offerings.

  • Wonderful
    by BGTwinsMom from United States

    When you're on the homeschool "circuit" it's easy to become one of Andrew Pudewa's groupies. So the excitement level for Pam's newest podcast doubled when I opened it on my iPhone and saw Andrew's name. I was remiss in not reviewing her first segment. Pam is a wonderful interviewer and has the ability to make conversation with her guests based on their answers and move seamlessly to her following questions. That is not easy to do. Highly recommend this to parents who Homeschool. Encouraging, motivating, and validating.

  • So Inspiring!
    by bethenyn from United States

    So inspiring! This podcast is what I needed to get our homeschool off to a great start this year. I will not miss an episode.

  • Inspiring and thought provoking!
    by Pascualamb from United States

    I've always thought memory work was so important in my 8 years as a teacher in a high school setting. I often required memorization and was criticized for this requirement. I recently decided to homeschool my children and this podcast was so affirming to me. I am glad to be able to follow my instincts as a teacher and give my kids what they deserve! Thank you for this wonderful podcast that inspired me to make memory work an important part of my homeschool.

  • Affirming & helpful
    by BOLDturquoise from United States

    I knew I would enjoy this podcast but I didn't know that I would LOVE it! As our family has moved more and more towards a simplified homeschool method, this podcast is just the thing to reaffirm our choices and continuously inspire us with new ideas. I can't wait for each new episode!

  • Inspiring
    by Amongst Lovely Things from United States

    This is just the kind of podcast I need to breathe life into my homeschool year. I’m so grateful for this new show, and Pam is a talented host. I won’t miss an episode!

  • Delightful...a Must Listen
    by 1coltsfamily from United States

    While I have heard Cindy Rollins speak about morning time before, I was pleasantly surprised to glean many new nuggets of wisdom that I can incorporate right away into our morning time. I always enjoy listening to Pam and find her questions spot on! The podcast is a wonderful balance of inspiration and practical tips. Can't wait for the next one!

  • Your Morning Basket
    by inakamama from Australia

    So lovely and inspiring! Looking forward to more...

  • Helpful & inspiring!
    by starlingsfive from United States

    A great resource for homeschool moms and so well put-together. Full of useful information, not fluff. Pam has a wonderful conversation style that keeps the show moving at a steady pace. I wish I didn't have to wait so long for the next one!