The Reading Wars Today by Sam Weaver

After decades of debate, and despite the overwhelming strength of the evidence in favor of phonics, reading education is still a controversial topic in the United States. Many educators continue to resist phonics in favor of anti-conceptual methods that amount to not teaching reading at all. This talk will present the recent history and current state of the reading wars and examine the ideas behind the ongoing opposition to phonics.

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Recorded July 1, 2023, at OCON in Miami, Florida.

Reproduction and the Objectivist Ethics by Gregory Salmieri

The Objectivist ethics is grounded in the nature of life. Spanning meta-ethics to politics, this talk surveys the implications for this ethics of an aspect of life about which Rand said little: reproduction. Topics include what it means for an organism’s life to be its ultimate value, whether (and when) having children is egoistic, and the rights of parents and children.

Recorded live on July 5, 2022 as part of the Objectivist Summer Conference.

Montessori and the Independent Mind with Matt Bateman, Catherine Dickerson, Allison Kunze, and Anne Locke Bussey

Ayn Rand, champion of the independent mind, championed Montessori education. Drawing on their experience with hundreds of individual young minds in Toddler, Primary and Elementary Montessori classrooms as well as home environments, this panel will explore Montessori’s emphasis on children’s independence in thought and action. Parents and those who work with children will get ideas for supporting their children’s independence.

Nurturing the Reader in Every Child with Lindsay Journo and Cornelia Lockitch

Is one of your goals as a parent or teacher to nurture a passion for reading in your children? Do you wonder about the role of reading instruction or screen time on the decline of reading in our culture? This presentation offers inspiration and practical advice for: – Building intrinsic motivation in children – Developing critical skills through a phonetic base and “total reading” – Choosing books (includes suggested reading lists by age) – Preparing your home or classroom environment – Exploring morality through literature.

The reading list mentioned can be found here:

Recorded live on June 24, 2019 as part of OCON 2019