What is the Classical Method?

Skill mastery at Pre-K might look something like this.  Youngsters begin the process of learning grammar through the explicit phonics curriculum we use.  

Students memorize each of the 84 discrete phonograms by the end of Kindergarten.  They also begin to learn the 29 English spelling rules.  Students use these phonograms and rules to decode written words (visual language).  Decoding links visual words with their spoken words (auditory language).  We give them word after word which provides multiple contexts for these skills. 

We will also dictate words that they will encode or spell.  We increase the “difficulty” of the words over time.  This engages them at a deep cognitive level both reading and writing.  

We see the same method at work in how we teach arithmetic.  We begin with simple number recognition leading to the ability to tell time. This pedagogy of discrete skills, multiple contexts, and deep mental cognition remains consistent.  All the way through the senior year they learn with this method.   

Contemporary brain research confirms we learn best like this.  We learn faster and it stays with us longer. Classical methodology is efficient and effective. Whether they paraphrase a fable.  Or create arguments. Or analyze Dante’s Inferno.  Or conquer concepts in Physics.

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