Course: Short Excerpts in Literature, Level 12

Course description:

We know there is only so much time available during the four years of high school. So how can we parents expose our children to the very greatest literature available? One way is to have him read entire great works. This is beautiful! But it takes a long time to get through entire works.

Another way is have the student read many short excerpts of great books that he otherwise never would have otherwise known nothing about. This “whets the student’s appetite,” broadens his mind, and hopefully leaves him wanting more! This is exactly what this course is designed to do. Here we give the student a wonderful sample of some of the finest works in existence: The “Confessions” of St. Augustine; Aristotle’s famous "Nichomachean Ethics"; St. Thomas Aquinas’ "Summa Theologiae"; some interesting and famous Platonic dialogues; a few of Shakespeare’s beautiful sonnets, and more.

If the above titles and authors sound intimidating, we understand! But have no worries, for all the excerpts we offer are carefully annotated. The student is given the plain meaning of the text, mini-biographies, maps, vocabulary, notes, and even some other of the author’s works to consider if he liked what he read. Far from being lost, the average student should be able to follow and enjoy the text.

This is an important course and we urge you not to “protect” your student from hard things by removing this course. Instead, push him to read great things, sharpening the mind.

Course fee:

$ 38

Course Length (in weeks):


Book(s) used:

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Textbook: Short Excerpts in Great Literature – LEVEL TWELVE


Author: Staff of Christ the King Books

Publisher: Christ the King Books

Publisher's Description:

Please view / download a PDF sample of this book.

Intended for high school seniors (but could also be read by juniors), this book contains very important excerpts from great masters such as Plato, Aristotle, St. Thomas, and Shakespeare. If the very names Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and St. Thomas make you concerned, “Oh no, my student could never understand that!”, then we assure you that with the great number of annotations, explanations, and vocabulary entries that we have added, the average student should do just fine understanding what is being taught by these masters of wisdom.

Plato (by giving us the thought of his teacher, Socrates) teaches us in the Meno and Apology the importance of the intellectual life and that one must pursue it to the best of one’s abilities, even to the point of dying for the truth. In the excerpt from his wonderful Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle shows us that human happiness depends on the virtuous life. St. Thomas in his Summa Theologica takes all the natural wisdom of Aristotle and others, and uses it to organize and teach the very highest science, theology.

Every Catholic high school student should, before graduating, get at least get a tiny taste of the wisdom of the greatest philosophers! That is precisely what this book provides.

Suggested grades: 11-12 or adult. 56 pages.

ISBN: 9781637941850

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