Classical Conversations

of Hermitage, TN

This Week: Valentine Exchange in Classes

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This week in class, the tutors will plan a time (up to their discretion) to exchange Valentines. Here's the thing - make it as big or as little of a deal as you want to make it for your family. :-) Bring them or forget them, Pinterest your heart out or buy some at the store, decorate boxes to collect them in or stick them a backpack pocket. It's all good and it will be fun any which way you choose to go.

Blessing Hermitage Church of Christ

Twylla Foust and Abby Simms have been working this year on a way to bless HCC for so kindly hosting us. While we're not certain whether we'll be at HCC next year or be in a different location, let's thank them for opening their doors to us so graciously during our time here! Here's a note from Twylla and Abby about the plan:

Hello Parents!

As you know, we have been warmly welcomed at Hermitage Church of Christ for the past few years. They have blessed us in many ways and we would like to show them our appreciation and bless them in return. After discussing some possible needs/wants with Laura Beth, we have decided to ask each of our CC families to prayerfully consider giving to a group gift. We are not setting an amount and we are not requiring everyone to participate, but if you can, please do. With a group our size, we estimate that we could potentially bring in enough to get the church a Home Depot gift card AND possibly bless each person who works in the office with a personal gift card (perhaps for a dinner out with their spouse), OR another option may be to cater a lunch for the office staff. Our goal is to accomplish two of these tasks for them. The final outcome will be determined by how much comes in. Let's show the staff of HCC that their kindness toward us is appreciated.

You can bring your donation this week February 10th, the week after break February 24th or March 2nd. Please place all money in Twylla Foust's file in the plastic box that Laura Beth brings each week.

Box Tops for Education Spring Deadline

The deadline for filing our box tops for this spring is quickly approaching, so please bring any that you have collected and put them in Mandy Garcia's folder. We'll continue to collect them, of course, but any that are turned in after February will have to go into our first submission for next year. Thanks, everyone!

Help Wanted Weeks 19-24: Orchestra!

Beginning on March 2, we'll have a six-week period during which we'll be learning about the Orchestra. We'll focus on a different instrument family for 4 of those weeks, and I would love to know who in our group (or it could be a dad, grandparent or friend, if they're available) plays an instrument that they would be willing to bring in to show for a few minutes during Assembly on one of those weeks. Please let me know in person or email me!

Thursday, February 11: "Wonderful Woodwinds" at the Symphony

There are still spots available for this week's field trip to the symphony to learn about "Wonderful Woodwinds!" We'll learn about the flute, clarinet, oboe, and the rest of the gang with the help of Beethoven, Ravel, Grieg, Sousa and more. You can RSVP on the Rallyhood calendar. If we happen to go over our allotted 48 seats, I'm happy to contact them and see if we can bring more folks.

A couple of tips if you're attending this week:

  1. The performance begins at 10:15, but they ask that everyone arrive at least 20 minutes early to allow time to be seated.
  2. Homeschool groups can check in (IN THE WEST ATRIUM) and be seated as they arrive, so A) we don't have to wait for everyone to arrive to be seated, B) they seat the best seats first, so arriving earlier is better than arriving later, and C) if you want to sit with someone you know, you need to coordinate your arrival, because saving seats is incredibly inconvenient for the folks doing the seating (and depending on their mood, they may not allow it at all.
  3. The most convenient and best-priced parking this past time appeared to be in the Pinnacle building parking garage. You can see a map of its location here, as well as info about parking rates. Most folks paid about $6 last time.
  4. FAQs provided by the Symphony are here.

The symphony provides curriculum to accompany each performance. You can access the curriculum for this performance here.

You can access any of the music mentioned in the guides via NAXOS for free. To access the streaming playlists for the lesson plans, visit and login using this information:

Username: NashvilleYPC

Password: NashvilleYPC

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Friday, February 12: Wild Turkey Federation Convention

Cost: Free

Location: Opryland Hotel Ryman Hall B3

You may arrive at your leisure (hall is open 9 am - 7 pm). Each family needs to print their own teacher's pass, which you can download here.

Students will have the opportunity to:

· Meet wildlife, forestry and natural resource experts & professionals from state and federal wildlife agencies to learn what these organizations do and the career opportunities they provide.

· Learn how wild turkeys and a variety of other wildlife communicate (do you know wild turkeys make approximately 27 sounds besides the famous “gobble”?!) by talking turkey with a two time national gobbling champion.

· Learn why the wild turkey (and other wildlife) nearly went extinct and how wildlife agencies and sportsmen have brought them back to numbers worth strutting about!

· Learn about wild turkey biology, habitat, management and restoration in Tennessee.

· Meet and learn about the habitats, behaviors, life cycles and adaptations of a variety of interesting animals from the Nashville Zoo.

· Enjoy meeting raptors through Birds of Prey presentations by TN State Parks and learn about the unique role these animals play in the food chain.

· Learn how the USDA Forest Service manages our forests to keep them healthy, prevent wildfires and provide quality habitat by using prescribed fire and other management tools.

· Learn why it is important to conserve and manage our natural resources wisely, through one of the greatest wildlife conservation success stories of all time – the return of the wild turkey!

· Learn how the NWTF works with state and federal wildlife agencies to enhance wildlife habitat and recreational opportunities for the whole family on public and private lands.

· Meet outdoor celebrities who are eager to share their expertise and passion for the outdoors with others.

· Learn about available outdoor recreational experiences for the whole family in and around TN.

· Enjoy expert instruction & opportunities through hands-on archery, air guns, and more!


  • The zoo is typically there earlier in the day. I don't have a schedule for this year, but if seeing whatever zoo animals might be there is important to you, come earlier rather than later (I'd suggest you arrive by 10:00).
  • It is typically more crowded earlier, because traditional schools that attend will come earlier and leave around lunch time. If you'd prefer to navigate a less-crowded convention hall, come later.
  • Park in the back of the mall parking lot near the hotel and walk over to the hotel if you want to park for free.
  • You can also bring a lunch in, if you like (or snacks). Otherwise, there will be a concession area (which typically has normal concession food - pizza, chicken strips, etc.).
  • It's a perfect environment for a stroller, if you want or need to bring one.

Coming Up Friday 2/26: Memory Master Drill Session

Parents and kiddos who are working to master Cycle 1 (in its entirety or just a subject or two) are invited to meet-up in the Fellowship hall at HCC at 9:30 on Friday February 26. Here's what to expect:

  • Moms who attend will be assigned a subject (bring your Foundations guides or review cards!).
  • Children will be given a "passport" page.
  • Moms will split up into different classrooms and areas.
  • Children will rotate through to available subject stations where moms will ask them 24 weeks of a subject (if a child isn't trying to master all subjects, they can just rotate to the selection of ones they are).
  • We will mark the passports so children can see which weeks they need to continue to work on.
  • If your child (or you) are nervous about "Proofing" for Memory Master, this is a great opportunity to have a trial run to deal with the butterflies.
  • Younger siblings are welcome. They can either hang with mom, accompany a buddy from station to station or grab a passport and proof some on their own.
  • Please arrive by 9:30. We'll have a brief meeting first, but want to get started proofing by 9:45 in order to get everyone through quickly and be done by lunchtime.

March 4 Field Trip: Museum of Natural History

Cost: $2-$5 donation per person

Awesome opportunity to see and learn about rocks and fossils!! Our tour is at 1:00 unless we have over 30 attending, and then we have a second slot reserved for 3:00. More information and RSVP on the Rallyhood calendar.

Creating the Museum of Natural History is an ongoing project. More information available on the Rallyhood calendar and on their website.

Foundations to Challenge Connections

Many educational programs are built from the bottom up. In other words, classical, Christian schools start with kindergarten and build a grade at a time. Classical Conversations was built from the top down. When her oldest son turned twelve, Leigh Bortins realized that he needed to discuss literature, make presentations, debate history, and complete science labs with his peers. She gathered a group of students in her home, and the Challenge program was born. After a number of years, she realized that she and her friends could have prepared their children for these experiences better in the younger grades, and so the Foundations program was born. In other words, we started with the end in mind: everything you are learning right now with your kids has a purpose for later studies.

Community Calendar

You can access the Calendar here to see what's coming up or to RSVP to upcoming events.


Please remember to post photos in the "Gallery" on Rallyhood, so we'll have a great selection for our yearbook and end of the year slideshow. You can do this via the web or the Rallyhood app.