WHAT IS CLASSICAL EDUCATION?
Providence Classical Academy seeks to offer a classical and truly Christian education. Below we summarize what we mean by such terms.
Classical education follows the medieval model of grammar, logic, and rhetoric, corresponding with the developmental stages of childhood. These three phases of classical education are known as the trivium.
Our curriculum includes ancient and modern history, classical literature, math and the sciences, the history of art and music, and Latin studies.
GRAMMAR: K - 5TH GRADE
Every academic subject has its own grammar the basic building blocks and facts that must be learned. At the grammar stage a child's mind is a lot like a sponge, and memorization comes easily and enjoyably.
LOGIC: 6TH - 9TH GRADE
In the junior high years, we emphasize connections and interrelations. We study the why and how of each subject. The study of formal logic (fallacies and syllogisms) comes here, and the art of debate begins to emerge.
RHETORIC: 10TH - 12TH GRADE
High school students are interested in presenting themselves well, so we take advantage of this stage by teaching them how to express their ideas most effectively through beautiful, respectful, creative, and persuasive speech and writing.
Classical education is driven by a goal, having the 'end result' in mind. The goal of classical education is the formation of a certain type of person a wise and virtuous person. As Christians we construe this goal in a more distinctively Christian way. The goal of education is the formation of a wise and virtuous and Christian person, who has learned "to take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ." (2 Cor. 5:10).
For more on classical education, download Dorothy Sayers' essay, The Lost Tools of Learning.
Click here: Classical Education
OTHER CRITICAL ELEMENTS OF A CLASSICAL EDUCATION
Other critical elements of a classical education:
-Valuing the past - A classical education puts a significant emphasis on the past, not because the past is sacrosanct, or because people were infallible in the past, but because we learn from the past. Also, by paying attention to the past, our modern blinders are at least partially removed, and we are able to see and understand our own age more clearly.
Learning the classical languages - A classical education includes a retrieval of the languages of classical antiquity Greek and Latin. The study of Greek and Latin are worthy of our attention because through the study of these languages, we learn our own language and its grammar more thoroughly, our critical and logical thinking skills are honed, our English vocabulary improves, and our abilities in other areas such as math improve immensely.
-Emphasizing rigorous thinking, speaking and writing - A classical education is dedicated to forming students who think, speak and write well. A truly excellent education should result in students who think well, and who communicate well, whether through the spoken or written word. Whether in debate, or in letters meant to persuade, or in various leadership positions, a classical education prepares students who can present themselves in a winsome and eloquent manner.