Jennifer Dow, the founder, and owner of The Paideia Fellowship is a classical teacher, writer, and speaker. Jennifer has completed the CiRCE Apprenticeship program as a CiRCE certified Classical Teacher and has taught humanities, rhetoric, and the fine arts since 2009 throughout the local and online homeschool community. Jennifer researches, writes, and speaks about classical teaching, serves as the director of the Paideia Fellowship Homeschool Community, teaches online at St. Raphael School, works with Classical Academic Press on the Schole Groups team, and is the co-host of The Classical Homeschool Podcast. Jennifer’s published works can be seen here on the Paideia Fellowship blog, at the CiRCE Institute blog, Schole Groups Blog, and Afterthoughts. She has been featured on Your Morning Basket Podcast with Pam Barnhill and has spoken to moms and educators around the country on how to teach classically and create thriving classical communities.
I believe that “Classical Education is the cultivation of wisdom and virtue by nourishing the soul on truth, goodness, and beauty by means of the seven liberal arts and the four sciences.” (CiRCE Institute’s definition) I love helping moms learn how to teach, study, and pursue wisdom and virtue in their homeschools.
My favorite things to study are literature, church and educational history, Greek philosophy, and the fine arts. If I was forced to choose, my favorite literary works are Beowulf, Tale of Two Cities, and Plato’s Dialogues.
My favorite quote is “A poem cannot be about everything.” by Wendell Berry.
I’m Ashley, a Catholic, a wife, a homeschooling mother, and a lover of wisdom. I grew up here and there eventually settling in Mississippi to finish out my bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts. I graduated with a concentration in anthropology and classical studies. I loved academia, and I would have loved to pursue a position in the ranks. However, God had a much different plan. I left a master’s degree and a PHD offer to become a wife and mother. Last year, I was privileged to participate in the Circe Atrium where I was able to dive deeper into the principles of the Christian Classical Tradition.
I believe that classical education is not just for our children. We are the parents and the primary educators of our children. As such, we have to be willing to heal our own organs of truth perception. Some of the ways that I think we can do that are to read, learn, seek out knowledge, commonplace, discuss, and build habits through liturgy.
Murder mysteries, commonplacing, Myers Briggs (I’m an INTJ), red lipstick, cheetah print, food, baking, cooking, reading, classical homeschooling, writing, and listening to podcasts are just a few favorite interests that keep my mind palace decorated.
Choosing a favorite book was a hefty task; however, I think that these four books have been re-read or thought of the most through my life: Club Dumas by Arturo Perez-Reverte, The Epic of Gilgamesh, Leisure the Basis of Culture by Josef Pieper, & And Then There Were None By Agatha Christie
A favorite poem is “This is Just to Say” by William Carlos Williams.
“Books are not made to be believed, but to be subjected to inquiry. When we consider a book, we mustn’t ask ourselves what it says but what it means.” – The Name of the Rose, by Umberto Eco
“The essence of virtue consists of the good rather than in the difficult.” – Thomas Aquinas