What is classical education?
Thinking about what is classical education? people may have different types of ideas. It is derived from the ancient times of Greece and Rome. People of those times, possessed a divine spark. Classical education aims to cultivate wisdom virtue in their pupils.
This article will highlight and explain all about the classical education and the three stage pattern in which a student attains this education. This is mandatory and have become part of almost all course outlines.
What is meant by a classical education?
Classical education teaches students how to use basic learning tools to appreciate the best of our historical culture. It is usually done through using symphonies, paintings, and literature by Homer, Plato, Shakespeare, and Cervantes, among others.
It is characterized by the search for truth, the formation of character, and the moral education of the students. They are the subject to an iron discipline. It follows a tradition that considers moral character as important as academic ability. In it, the teacher is invested with authority and part of his job is to encourage virtue. Also the instil restraints against the threat of immorality, and pass on cultural heritage.
This model of education was successful for several centuries in countries. It achieved the highest levels of socio-economic and technological development. However, it began to be questioned from the nineteenth century by rationalists and naturalists. They considered that morality was not an objective truth. Also that the other biblical virtues on which this model was based. But rather, the product of subjective beliefs that repressed sickened and enslaved the human being.
What is the purpose of classical education?
We note that in the classical work, the emphasis is placed on the morality established by God, respect, and responsibility of the students. While in the ideal, moral relativism and rights prevail above all the values. We consider that it is utopian since it tries to educate the human being without having the correct knowledge of it. And by assuming that its beliefs are objective truths.
In this sense, it fails to fulfil the individual promises of its defenders. Mainly that of liberating human beings from ignorance, violence, poverty, disease, and inequality. On the contrary, according to the statistics on malnutrition, child abuse, sexual exploitation, crime, corruption, drug addiction, homicides, violence against women, and unsatisfied basic needs. We see that it is not the solution.
A classical education, then, has two important aspects. It focuses on language and follows a specific three-part pattern: That three stage pattern is call trivium.
The mind must be fed first with facts. Then with the logical tools for organizing those facts, and finally equipped to express conclusions.
But that is not all! For the classical mind, all knowledge is interrelated. That is why we place so much emphasis on the importance of not decontextualizing.
History cannot go in any other way that is not handed in hand with geography (space-time axes), art, and literature. Science with nature and this in turn with changes and progress over time.
This is easier said than done. The world is full of knowledge. Finding the links between fields of study can be a complex task. A classical education solves this challenge by taking history as its organizational scheme. What we call the backbone of this type of education, starting with the ancients and moving forward to modernity in history, science, literature, art, and music and all through the reading of high-quality literary books. The classics.
After knowing about what is classical education? and what is the purpose of classical education, this article will shed light onto some more informative points.
What are the classical subjects?
Classical education holds different subjects pertaining to classical and historical times which include;
Drama, English Literature, Philosophy, History and many other subjects that are particularly based on ancient times.
What are the three stages of classical education?
Education based on the liberal arts, or classical education is a process of integral formation of the human being in three parts. Three parts of the same development process.
During the first years, the child absorbs what he lives, what surrounds him, the events he experiences daily. What he contemplates and discovers, what is read to him and reads himself, absorbs as if they were the roots of a tree. With much eagerness and curiosity, laying the groundwork for the advanced study to come later.
In the middle years or grades, students learn to think logically with arguments, relate and connect ideas, learn to reason.
From the age of 15 or 16, they learn to express themselves clearly, precisely, and consistently, both orally and in writing.
This classic three-stage pattern is quite helpful.
“Stage of grammar”
So then, the first years are called “Stage of grammar” because they are the years in which the building blocks for all other learning are established. Through grammar and this as the basis of language. Knowledge is incorporated that will serve as raw material, as a base, when elaborating the reasoning.
To put grammar into practice but not so much to name the grammatical structures or to try to analyse. That will come later, when the child can understand and reason those structures.
In the elementary years, 6 to 11 years or so, the mind is ready to absorb information, the memory is super activated, and the senses alert. Memorization, far from being a tortuous activity, as many adults or modern pedagogical currents often see it. It is for them a real fun, a pleasure. At this age, children naturally show a special inclination to build collections, classify, put things together, and put things in order.
So then, during this period, the learning of the facts takes place. The rules of phonetics and spelling, grammar, poems, the vocabulary of the native language and foreign languages, stories, biographies, literature, descriptions of plants and animals, the human body, facts of mathematics, and everything that surrounds them. It is the ideal stage for them to learn the names of countries, plants, insects, birds, rivers, geographical features, rocks, and minerals, etc. This information constitutes the “grammar” or the basic elements.
“Stage of Logic or Dialectic”
Around the sixth or seventh grade, a child’s mind begins to think more analytically. The second phase of classical education begins, the “Stage of Logic or Dialectic”. It is a moment in which the child begins to pay more attention to cause.
A youngster is ready for the stage of logic when the capacity for abstract thinking begins to mature. During these years, the student begins the study of logic and algebra and begins to apply logical reasoning to all academic subjects. He begins to wonder why and why of everything he has learned up to that point.
You will no longer just learn the rules of grammar and spelling, but you will also be able to analyze the facts of the language. The logic of reading implies criticism and analysis of the texts, not the simple absorption of information. This analysis does not necessarily have to be done formally but is a process that occurs in the thought in the mind of the young person who analyzes almost naturally.
The logic of the story demands that the student discover why the French Revolution broke out, rather than simply framing a series of events. The logic of science requires that the child learn the scientific method for example or the laws of nature.
Classical education vs modern education:
Also, the systematic study allows the student to join what Mortimer Adler calls the “Great Conversation,” the conversation of great minds through time. Sometimes modern education is so eclectic that the student has little opportunity to make connections between past events and the flood of current information. Classical education, in an academic way: Make connections and trace developments, lines of reasoning, patterns of action, recurring symbolism, arguments, and motives.”
It is a flexible program that will help families to insert themselves in the classical world and the integral thinking that this pedagogy proposes. Achieving as fruits the love for learning and for always seeking Truth, Good, and Beauty throughout.
Develops virtue in the student. Aristotle defined virtue as the ability to act by what is known to be correct. The virtuous man or woman can force themselves to do what they know and understand to be correct.
When it goes against their inclinations, tastes, or whims of the moment. Classical education asks its students to work doggedly against their lower inclinations (laziness, the desire to watch another half hour of TV or play little computer games) to reach a goal, an objective to be achieved, a skill or skill, etc.
In this article, we have derived enough information about what is classical education?
Now in conclusion, we highlight that a piece of work that rejects moral and classic fundamentals is not the right interpretation. Since it has been shown that highly educated people also have greed. Their internal passions (egotism, envy, and pride), and lust for power, cannot be eliminated. Even with experiments or rhetoric, it is not really possible. But through a suitable classic work it might be possible. It frees man from these passions and manages to fill the existential gaps that money, titles, philosophies, and ideologies cannot achieve.
This is available in the books. However, most people are reluctant to apply it. Although it is not known whether it is out of ignorance. Because it contradicts ideologies. Also, because it is mistakenly considered religious. It is the only way that establishes a perfect standard of truth, justice, and love. It leads to the desired general well-being and peace.
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