Classical Christian education is the cultivation of virtue and wisdom by nourishing the soul on truth, goodness, and beauty according to God’s Revelation using the classical liberal arts. Its purpose is to train the soul to love that which is worth loving.
As a classical Christian school, Providence integrates all subjects together with Scripture at the core. We aim to equip our students for lifelong success using methods proven to be true for over 1,500 years by giving students the tools to learn and think for themselves. We operate as an extension of the family to assist parents in educating their child, realizing that education is the Biblical responsibility of the family. Our curriculum is planned with the end in mind, focusing on planting, nourishing, and cultivating the souls of our students to watch them bear fruit as 40, 50, and 60 year old men and women of God. Additionally, our chosen curriculum has proved to be one of the highest scoring of all students in private, independent, and public schools on the SAT and ACT tests.
Classical Christian schools like Providence frame their education through the Trivium; a three-stage process based on Grammar, Logic, and Rhetoric. TheTrivium works through a progression that trains a child based on the child’s natural stages of development.
Grammar (K-6th): During this stage children are parrots. They memorize new information quickly and easily retain it. In this stage, we build a solid foundation across the curriculum by focusing primarily on language development, learning the skills of reading and writing while enjoying classic children’s literature, mastering the facts of math, basic science, Bible stories, and Scripture memory. In 3rd through 6th grades, students enjoy learning the basics of Latin grammar, vocabulary, and translation through chants and songs.
Logic (7th-8th): In the Logic Stage, students begin to reason. Students take the facts mastered in the Grammar Stage and learn how to organize and apply them and build structured arguments. In order to utilize these developing skills, students are expected to discuss actively in their classes. This prepares them for a deep and meaningful exploration in all subjects within a Christian world-view. The formal study of logic begins in 7th grade, but all students are intentionally taught reasoning skills beginning in Grammar School.
Rhetoric (9th-12th): This is the final stage of the Trivium. Teenagers are most concerned with self-expression and persuasion. In order to guide these interests in a positive direction, students learn to communicate across all disciplines in both speech and the writing. Formal study of rhetoric begins in 10th grade, but the basic skills of public speaking and argumentation are instilled through all stages of development at Providence.
.Classical Christian education is an educational category which establishes a biblical worldview (called Paideia) by incorporating trusted, timeless methods of student development. It includes the cultivation of the 7 Christian Virtues, training student reasoning through the Trivium (Grammar, Logic, and Rhetoric), and interacting with the historical Great Books.
Tens of thousands of parents are embracing classical Christian K-12 schools because they can see the difference. Parents who want their children to flourish in life, not just get by. And they want this for their children’s whole life, not just for college.
Classical Christian schools were uniquely designed to help parents obey Paul’s instruction in Ephesians, “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the paideia of the Lord.” In the first century to the 19th, classical Christian education was the way Christian parents cultivated a Christian Paideia in their children.
Paideia is powerful because it influences who we are in a deep way that is almost imperceptible to us– it’s woven into us from childhood. If you spend a day in a conventional high school talking to students, and then spend a day with classical Christian high-schoolers, we think you’ll see the difference.
If you listen to educators today, you’ll typically hear one common goal: “College and Career Readiness.” But what if students were asked to rise to a greater purpose? Parents at classical Christian schools are realizing that their kids can rise to something greater, something deeper, if we dare to imagine it. We disciple students to love great art, great books, and to appreciate the Greatness of God. And when they come near graduation after a decade or more in classical Christian schools, people notice something. No form of education can compare to the success seen within classical Christian schools.
Education with a bigger purpose
This “pearl of great price” in education is greatly valued for those who understand its potential, but often goes unrecognized by those who do not.
- We train students to lead with eloquence. Our unique method, based in the tradition of the Trivium, works with the age of the child through grammar (k-5), logic (grades 6-8), and rhetoric (grades 9-12) to develop clear thinking and a masterful command of spoken and written language.
- We inspire depth and Wisdom. Students engage great books containing rich stories that shape both the soul and literary understanding. A rich and nuanced command of language plays an unsung role in understanding Gods word, and in understanding our fellow man. And, a thorough immersion in the study of history using original sources helps students “live in many times and therefore in some degree [be] immune from the great cataract of nonsense that pours from the press and the microphone of [their] own age.” (C.S. Lewis)
- We cultivate rightly ordered affections (the ancient concept of virtue). We realize this sounds strange, or foreign. But since the time of the early church, Christians have been about training students to love the true, the good, and the beautiful. And, to “rightly order” those loves so that we love first our God, and then our neighbor. This means that we order our affections as God would.
- We imprint a biblical framework to understand everything. This is more than adding a bible verse to the curriculum. When every facet of history, science, math, philosophy, art, and other subjects is integrated around the truth of the Christian worldview, students gain a unique and important perspective.
Classical Christian education breaks away to re-establish Christianity as a leading voice in our culture. And, classical Christian education also has proven to be the most effective preparation for college.
Finish reading this article and learn more about this proven, time-tested method of education here.