Monday, October 14, 2013

Skyping With Tim Beirne's AP US History Class at The Stony Brook School

The Stony Brook School
Earlier this week I spent about forty-five minutes with The Stony Brook School seniors enrolled in Tim Bierne's Advanced Placement United States History class.  Tim assigned my Was America Founded as a Christian Nation? to the students for their summer reading this year and he thus thought it would be fun for me to get together with the students via Skype. The students had just completed writing a formal review essay of the book.

As some of you know, I taught this very class at The Stony Brook School back in 2002 when Joy was working as the school's Dean of Students and I was writing my dissertation across the tracks at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. The Stony Brook School is an outstanding college preparatory academy.  When I describe it to folks unfamiliar with the world of boarding schools I often tell them that it is like a Christian version of the school in Robin Williams movie Dead Poet Society.

The students at The Stony Brook School have always been sharp and Tim's AP students did not disappoint.  They peppered me with questions, both about the book's content and the process of writing it.  Tim had them well-prepared.  When I asked him to give me a sense of what they had been studying, he told me that they had just finished reading and discussing Charles Beard's famous economic interpretation of the Constitution.  Wow!  I didn't learn about Beard until I graduate school.  How do I sign up for this class?

Tim is a former student of mine--a 2009 graduate of Messiah College.  I am very proud of the good work he is doing at The Stony Brook School. These kind of experiences are always very rewarding for me.

Thanks for the invitation Tim!