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Good Knight Dad Podcast


Good Knight Dad is Midland Classical Academy's podcast. General and Brandon challenge, equip, and empower MCA dads to step up to their God-given mandate to train their children up in the LORD. Each episode uncovers and explains the purpose behind one or more of the many quirky things that make up classical education at MCA.


It is our prayer that this tool will help you leverage everything MCA offers as you live out Ephesians 6:4. "And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord."


Click/tap any of the titles below to listen immediately on your device.
General Echols and Brandon Shuman discuss the vision and values of Midland Classical Academy.
General and Brandon discuss the biblical vision for education and how MCA conforms to that vision.
General and Brandon interview Collin Pedersen on the powerful influence of being a dad. Collin shares his story and insights into how he strives to be faithful with the mantle of fatherhood.
General and Brandon give an overview of classical Christian education.
General and Brandon interview Lee Dunn, veteran and current MCA dad of four, about what a father's responsibility is in the education of his children. Lee shares valuable wisdom and practical tips from his ongoing experience about how he has assumed this responsibility as an MCA dad.
MCA's Athletic Director, Ron Miller, joins a discussion with General and Brandon about the role Athletics plays in Engaging Minds, Pursuing Christ, and Discovering Greatness at Midland Classical Academy.
7th Grade is a big transition year for any student - all the more so at Midland Classical Academy. General and Brandon sit down with Scott Layh, MCA Dad of an 8th, 7th and 5th grader and husband to MCAG 6th grade teacher, Jennifer Layh, to discuss winning strategies for parenting during this exciting season.
Great Books form the heart of MCA upper schools classical curriculum. General and Brandon explain what these classes are all about and what they are trying to accomplish, but most importantly how dads can enter into the student's Great Books experience and to better engage and guide their children towards what is right and true.
As it is open season for Mastery with Honors Project ("MH Project") applications at the MCA upper school, General and Brandon discuss our unique approach to honors classes and how they spur students on to discover greatness.
Did you know that at the upper school most assignments can be revised for partial credit? General and Brandon discuss the purpose of revisions at MCA and in life as well as strategies for using them wisely.
How important is reading aloud? At what age can my kids manage reading entirely on their own? Are audiobooks just as good? General sits with A.J. and Megan Perea, parents of 3 1/2 at the grammar school, and discusses these questions and more regarding readalouds.
Junior year is a challenging season at MCA. General and Brandon distinguish the reputation from the reality of this year and hear from two-time Junior dad, Jeff Carter who shares strategy and vision for helping parents support their juniors as they discover greatness.
General and Brandon share the heart behind service hours that goes well beyond the helpful benefits of making copies, or washing windows. They share an exciting vision for how parents can take advantage of this opportunity to engage their student's world while modeling a powerful example of what biblical greatness looks like.
Amy Avampato, head MCAG administrator, chats with General and Brandon as she shares valuable insights into the course of the Grammar School calendar. Her wisdom into each MCAG season greatly empowers dads to not only gain awareness into what is going on and the why behind them, but also provides powerful strategies to maximize what each month offers.
Most parents know the MCA is not your typical school. But who sanctions and verifies our unique education? General and Brandon answer this question and discuss the vision behind a few other counter intuitive oddities as we try to pursue Christ through classical education.
MCA is an intentional community. General and Brandon encourage parents to take advantage of the holiday breaks to enjoy time with family, rest up, and make memories.
Home days for Grammar School families can be a time of sweetness or stress - and sometimes both. The fabulous Amy Avampato returns to the Good Knight Dad podcast to share with General and Brandon what healthy home days look like as she shares clarity and practical advice for parents as you negotiate the multi-faceted realities in home schooling your children.
General and Brandon attempt to set the record straight as to what takes place during each season of an MCA upper-school year.
Clif Coleman, MCA veteran dad, joins General and Brandon to discuss what is different about MCA students.
General and Brandon kick off the spring semester with a podcast that recasts MCA's vision for the new year. They offer timely reminder of who we are, what we are about, and explain why MCA exists - to empower, equip, and encourage parents to overcome the daunting challenge of raising godly men and women who can meaningfully serve and effectively advance God's kingdom throughout their lives.
By now most every Knight knows that MCA's vision is Engaging Minds - Pursuing Christ - Discovering Greatness. But what are the essential principles and values that continually drive us toward our vision? General and Brandon explain the Upper School's core values and shed light on some of the many ways they practically play out in MCA life.
Amy Avampato joins General and Brandon to explain the values that drive and define the life at the Grammar School.
As the calendar rolls from January to February, General and Brandon take a personal moment to reflect and consider how we are doing as a school and as fathers in leading our families. Do our stated values align with habits? What are our habits leading our hearts to love? Are we causing our students to love Jesus and learning more?
Amy Avampato and General Echols discuss the amazing vision for the parent's initials on the home day study sheets. Understanding this powerful tool greatly empowers parents in their home school journey at MCA. 
One of the first distinctives students and parents at MCA notice is that it takes an 85 to advance to the next level. General and Brandon explain the distinction between "passing" and "mastery," the heart behind this standard, and strategies to help your upper school students achieve academic greatness.
Does the Grammar School exist only for the sake of the Upper School at Midland Classical Academy? While it's true that the Grammar School does an excellent job preparing its students for their Upper School adventures, there are many sweet joys to delight in and moments to explore during the Grammar Years. Reagan Harper joins General and Brandon to shares a timely vision for how to more fully enjoy the grammar years before they are gone.
Upper School Dean of Students Andy Zinkgraf joins the podcast with General and Brandon just in time for Senior Oral season to explain everything you wanted to know about the Senior Thesis - what it is, how it works, and how you as a parent can prepare your student to thrive when their day comes. 
MCAG's Matt Buckingham—the man, the myth, the legend—joins General and Brandon to discuss the 5th grade year at MCA and offer strategies to help your younger Knights discover greatness.
Have you heard about the new phone policy in the Resource Center? General and Brandon explain all about it, its intent, the opportunities it presents, and the positive effects it is having.
With spring break in the rear view mirror it is full steam ahead to summer! Even though seasons are changing there are still minds to be engaged, Christ to be pursued, and greatness to be discovered in April. General and Brandon set the table for April so that you and your students don't miss what the final weeks of the school year has in store. Finish well!
Click/tap the icon to access Good Knight Dad on iTunes