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About Leigh A. Bortins
Leigh Bortins is a nationally acclaimed educator, perhaps best known for her ability to demystify the fundamental tools of learning. As a teacher, author and commentator, Leigh is credited with helping to launch the “home-centered learning” education movement.
After earning a degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan, Leigh worked in the aerospace industry before beginning her work as an educator. In teaching study skills for almost 20 years to children and adults, she has written several books including The Core: Teaching Your Child the Foundations of Home-Centered Education, Echo in Celebration: A Call to Home-Centered Education, The Foundations Program: A Classical Curriculum (a teaching guide), and The Essentials of English Language Guide (a teaching guide for language arts from the classical perspective). She has authored complete K-12 curriculum guides for program directors, teachers, and tutors all across the country.
Leigh is the founder and CEO of Classical Conversations Inc., an organization that models classical, home-centered education to empower learners of all ages. She trains facilitators dedicated to duplicating her methods, and is thereby transforming education and improving the quality of family and community life. Classical Conversations is nearly doubling in size and scope each year.
Leigh has completed the Doctoral program in Global Education at the Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary near Boston, where she developed relationships with educators in India and Africa. She enjoys speaking to policy organizations interested in promoting private education as well as homeschooling organizations. On her radio show, Leigh at Lunch!, Leigh engages thought leaders from across the country in conversations on education. Her blog, 1SmartMama, provides opportunities for those interested in classical education to speak out on current events as well as encourage every parent that they are smart enough to homeschool their children.
Leigh’s emphasis on the time-tested enjoyment of learning and the fundamentals of education and critical thinking skills grew out of her own experiences in homeschooling her four boys with her husband Robert. They live near Pinehurst, North Carolina.
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In the past, correct spelling, the multiplication tables, the names of the state capitals and the American presidents were basics that all children were taught in school. Today, many children graduate without this essential knowledge. Most curricula today follow a haphazard sampling of topics with a focus on political correctness instead of teaching students how to study. Leigh Bortins, a leading figure in the homeschooling community, is having none of it. She believes that there are core areas of knowledge that are essential to master. Without knowing the multiplication tables, children can’t advance to algebra. Without mastery of grammar, students will have difficulty expressing themselves. Without these essential building blocks of knowledge, students may remember information but they will never possess a broad and deep understanding of how the world works. In this book, Bortins gives parents the tools and methodology to implement a rigorous, thorough, and broad curriculum based on the classical model, including:
• Rote memorization to cement knowledge
• Systematic learning of geography, historical facts, and timelines
• Reading the great books and seminal historical documents
instead of adaptations and abridged editions
• Rigorous training in math and the natural sciences<