Education Is a Science of Relations
Our pedagogy seeks to embrace the liberal arts model of education that has been passed down to us by the great educators of the past. Ancient and medieval educators used two words to describe the Trivium of Grammar, Dialectic (or sometimes Logic) and Rhetoric. The first is ars (in Greek techne). The root of our word “art,” ars denotes not just painting, sculpture and music, but any skill, craft or power. It describes an active engagement with something, not theoretical knowledge. In contrast, at times ancient and medieval educators describe the subjects of the Trivium as scientiae, a word which denotes not just what we would today call “science,” but any definite set of things that you know. An art is something that you do; a science is something that you know. The Trivium of Grammar, Dialectic/Logic and Rhetoric is both.
Our unique LogoCentricTM model of instruction cultivates a student’s love and mastery of language, while directing students towards Christ, the word (Logos). The lessons integrate the arts of grammar, logic and rhetoric while teaching a breadth of history, geography, art and music.
Our methods include …
Literature, History, Art and Music
Oral Reading and Narration
Great works of literature provide the material as kindergarteners delight in the tales of Beatrix Potter, fourth-graders discuss C.S. Lewis’ The Magician’s Nephew, and eighth-graders wrestle with the moral questions of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. In class, teachers and students discuss not just what makes these books good and beautiful, but also what makes them true.
Great works of art from across the world lead students to marvel at the precision of John James Audubon’s nature paintings and the vibrant colors of Paul Cezanne. Each study focuses on observation and discussion of a single painting, both its artistry and its connections with the art, literature, history and music studied in class.
Students study great classical composers as well as learn famous hymns and folk songs of Europe and America, singing “For the Beauty of the Earth” and “Home on the Range” while discovering the stories behind the music, as well as marveling at classics from Beethoven’s “Fifth Symphony” to Gustav Holst’s “The Planets.”
History and Geography Instruction
Kingfisher’s History Encyclopedia provides lessons that teach history facts in context while providing regular practice in geography. Topics range from the Chinese emperors to the Greek city-states to the antebellum American South, providing students with a broad and rich experience of world and American history. Students create their own “Book of Centuries” to chronicle the persons and events that they encounter in their studies.
Grammar & Composition in an Integrated Curriculum
Copywork, Recitation and Dictation
Great poetry and prose supply the fodder for students to practice their penmanship and spelling as they copy selections from classic literature, mastering them until they can write them from dictation. They also memorize poems from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere” to Psalm 18.
Integrated Grammar Activities
These activities allow students to see the underlying structures of language in the literature that they read, as they find the descriptive adjectives in Wordsworth and diagram sentences from Charles Dickens.
Students write both fictional and nonfictional responses to their reading through guided instruction, formulating formal essays, stories and poetry informed by their thoughtful class discussions.
Mathematics and Science Connections
Students have opportunities in lesson extensions to build relationships among all areas of knowledge by practicing arithmetic and geometry skills while studying Noah’s Ark or doing a science experiment while studying early agriculture.