Beyond the foundation of the trivium, the classical method Inspires Learning. Because it complements the phases of human development, it naturally appeals to students. Classical education engages the mind and the heart, producing a well-formed individual equipped for thinking andable to engage the world around them.
Finally, Integration between subjects presented with a Christian worldview ties the world together. Math, science, philosophy, and history are interwoven in a way that relates all subjects to the whole. As students Integrate subjects, scriptural truth is integrated as well. Classicism provides this perspective unlike any other form of education.
According to those who administer the SAT, students who take 2 years of Latin score on average 152 points higher on their SATs.
Source: The College Board, as cited by the National Committee for Latin and Greek.
Why is Latin such a valuable academic tool?
Latin is a powerful vocabulary builder. Over half of English comes from Latin, because often five or ten English words may stem from a single Latin root. By learning Latin, students are capable of grasping many English words that they’ve never heard.
English is a compound of other languages and therefore has many exceptions—its structure is hard to follow. Latin’s syntax and grammar can be considered an excellent “ideal” language, and its lessons equip the student to better write in English.
Training in Latin also gives the student the foundation for learning other languages like French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and Romanian. Perhaps 80% of each of these languages derives from Latin.
Professional careers like Law and Medicine, which require precision in language, have Latin as their base for technical terms and names. Students of Latin are readily prepared for these professions.
Fact: Classical education teaches students facts, provides them with logical tools to use those facts, and perfects the student’s ability to relate those facts to others. This fundamental skill-set is more valuable today than it has ever been. The process of teaching students to think extends far beyond filling their heads with knowledge. Modern education, to varying degrees, has succeeded in teaching facts and some skills. Classical education helps students draw original, creative, and accurate conclusions from facts and then formulate those conclusions into logical and persuasive arguments.
Modern subjects based in science and technology are taught in classical schools, through classical methods. Parents who are exposed to classical education recognize that its “back to the basics” approach contrasts with the distractions of modern education. Is the classical method applicable in a modern, technological age? The technology we have today was invented, in large part, by the classically educated.
Classical education teaches children the timeless skills of thinking; reasoning, logic, and expression. Our subject matter is as up-to-date as that found in other schools. We simply add a depth and dimension through this time-tested method.
Fact: Children enjoy learning. They are wired for it. Assuming that a child will not be able to succeed in a challenging environment is tempting, but simply untrue.
A common assumption is that a demanding curriculum results in unhappy children. As adults, learning new things can be uncomfortable. However, children are fascinated by what they learn. The excitement of children learning Latin grows as they become able to describe the world in a language that most adults do not understand. The right and complex texture of classical literature is amplified by youth. Science and the history of Western Civilization come alive for those who hunger to know about their world. For the unconvinced, a visit to our school is sure to demonstrate that our students love to learn. The classical method encourages a stimulating and enjoyable learning environment for students.
Fact: Classical education teaches “with the grain”—complementing their developmental phase with the appropriate teaching method. Parents are rightfully skeptical of anything that differs boldly from the norm. However, classical education was the norm 100 years ago because it worked.
Conventional education has taken an experimental approach to educating our children over the past four decades. Many different methods have been tried and later scrapped when they failed. This constant state of change in education creates an environment where anything “traditional” seems extreme. Classical education provides a basic structure upon which we can build effective, successful students. We are not advocating an experiment. Rather, we are seeking a return to a system proven for over 1,000 years.