Open Day at Campus
April 7, 2017

What is a Classical Education?

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Asking what we mean by ‘classical’ is a fair question;  people define ‘CLASSICAL EDUCATION’ differently. What does it mean at Trinity Prep?

Our definition of a classical approach to education can be summarized as follows:

  • We teach history chronologically, and study it every year.  History provides the contextual framework for the present.  Without a solid foundation in history, people cannot accurately understand and assess current events.
  • We teach the skill areas of math and grammar systematically.  Consistent work in these areas is critical.
  • We read good literature that is age appropriate and avoids unnecessary, scandalous components.  Great books may be popular books, but not all currently popular books are great books.
  • We align our Language Arts literature choices with our history studies, at each level.   Good books can do double-duty by providing rich language lessons AND informing the students about the time period and people being studied in their History course.
  • We regularly assess comprehension through weekly quizzes and homework, projects, and cumulative tests.
  • We recognize the three developmental stages of school-age children and the attendant learning characteristics:
    • Grammar stage: generally infants through 10/11 years old; in this stage, students are acquiring Knowledge and laying a foundation for future learning.
    • Logic stage: typically 11yo through 14/15 years old; at this stage, students are gaining Understanding as they learn to make meaningful connections between information they’ve learned, and how they connect to the wider world around them.
    • Rhetoric stage:  14 years old and up; these high school students are gaining Wisdom as they compare information, arguments and worldviews to the Truth of Scripture, and making a defense of their position and of God’s truth.
  • We expose children to questions and ideas, to foster critical thinking; but expect that their worldview is formed in concert with their parents.  We are not their primary educators or trainers.
  • We believe the purpose of a classical Christian education is three-fold:

– – – to support the student’s FAITH and discipleship to Christ, so that s/he will be equipped to fulfill God’s destiny;

– – – to discern TRUTH within the copious amounts of information available to all of us in this information age;

– – – to identify, esteem, and practice VIRTUE.

We choose our activities and curricula to support these three purposes.

Leslie Kent
Upper School Director