What is Classical Education? A New Homeschooling Mom's Guide
Embarking on a homeschooling journey opens the door to exploring various educational philosophies -- there's so many options! How do I decide? Ultimately, you have to make the decision that's best for your family. I chose to look at first and answer the question, "What is a child and how does he/she learn?" to make my initial decisions regarding homeschooling. Classical education stands out as a time-tested approach rooted in ancient Greco-Roman tradition. How does a classical education philosophy answer this question? And what exactly does it entail, and how can it elevate your homeschooling experience?

Classical education offers a profound answer to the question of what a child is and how they learn. It recognizes that children are not empty vessels to be filled with information but rather curious and imaginative beings made in the image of God eager to explore the world around them. By embracing the trivium—grammar, logic, and rhetoric—classical education provides a structured framework that nurtures children's natural inclination towards truth, goodness, and beauty.

In the grammar stage, children are introduced to the wonders of language, literature, history, arts, and science through the use of living books and good, true, and beautiful sources. These captivating narratives not only impart knowledge but also ignite children's imaginations and instill in them a love for learning. By immersing children in stories and facts that resonate with their innate curiosity, classical education lays a solid foundation upon which further learning can be built.

As children progress into the logic stage, they are encouraged to think critically, analyze information, and make connections between different realities in their world. This phase challenges them to question assumptions, seek out underlying patterns, and engage with complex ideas. Through the exploration of more advanced living books, children develop the intellectual tools necessary to navigate the complexities of the world around them with discernment and clarity.

In the rhetoric stage, students refine their communication skills—both written and verbal—and learn to articulate thoughts persuasively and engage in meaningful dialogue and debate. This phase not only focuses on the art of persuasion but also cultivates a deep appreciation for beauty and goodness in all its forms. By encouraging students to express themselves eloquently and engage thoughtfully with diverse perspectives, classical education prepares them to become effective communicators and compassionate leaders in an increasingly interconnected and complex world.

By incorporating classical education into your homeschooling journey, you can not only provide your children with a holistic and enriching educational experience that fosters intellectual curiosity, moral integrity, and a lifelong love for learning, but also do this within relationship alongside your children (one of the most important parts). You can capitalize on your strengths while also learning with your children! With the guidance of abundant resources and support from fellow homeschooling mamas (some who are seasoned with wisdom and others who are freshly energetic about starting), you can create a dynamic and engaging learning environment where your children can flourish into thoughtful, engaged individuals equipped to navigate life's challenges with wisdom and grace.


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