In the 7th grade students transition to the Art of Logic. Formal logic courses will come in the 8th and 9th grades. However, inductive logic and the advanced skills of analysis begin in 7th. Students learn inductive logic by reading difficult texts. The texts come from the Great Books of Western civilization. The Bible remains central. Also, writing instruction begins teaching the initial skills of argumentation.
We continue to utilize and hone the comprehension skills mentioned earlier. (The skills of activating background knowledge, identifying text structure, making predictions, creating questions, forming images, self monitoring, and summarizing). At this time, we also introduce the discrete skills of analysis called the Great Ideas. Students memorize these ideas and learn how to use them.
The Great Ideas comprise 102 concepts or categories. These are big concepts that humanity asks questions about generation after generation. Ideas such as Beauty, Experience, Government, Love, Mind, Reason, etc.
These general topics serve as focal points for our students’ thinking. They read particular texts and relate the ideas back to the Great Idea. This first step of analysis is being able to relate a particular back to a more general concept. This Great Idea then direct the students’ thoughts back to another particular text. Or to particular movies, shows, songs or other contemporary expressions. Now they can compare and contrast the ideas—the second step of analysis.
These skills, or ideas, build a foundation of analysis. Analysis, with the resulting judgment of truth in texts, lie at the heart of the Art of Logic.