The Goals of a Classical Education
An education at Harvest Christian School is unique: our goal is not simply to fill young heads with knowledge, but to cultivate gentlemen and ladies who will go out and change the world for the cause of Jesus Christ. We accomplish this through several guiding principals:
The purpose of Classical Education is to cultivate virtue and wisdom. The classical Christian does not ask, “What can I do with this learning?” but “What will this learning do to me?” The ultimate end of Classical Christian education is to enable the student (disciple) to better know, glorify, and enjoy God. Since we are able to know things with which we have a common nature, the more we are like God the better we can know Him. A student gives glory to God when he is like Him. Our enjoyment of God is derived from our ability to see Him and to see His handiwork.
In a Christian school, learning is not an end in itself. Instead, the classical Christian teacher asks God to use his teaching, dispositions, and actions as an instrument in His hand to cultivate the students’ souls toward holiness. In this sense, learning can be a means of grace
Ordo Amoris (the order of affections):
To fulfill a lower order good, one must proceed to the good of the next highest order (i.e. to fulfill the good of finishing homework, the student must proceed to the slightly higher good of trying to get a good grade; to rightly gain food and shelter we must seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness; to get into the most appropriate college and to do well when we get there, we must seek wisdom and virtue).
Failure to recognize this principle in every area of education and life leads to a disordered soul and a school that cannot succeed in what it values most highly. To nurture a rightly ordered souls requires the cultivation of the moral imagination.
“Multum non Multas” (Much, Not Many):
Classical Christian education deals deeply with few subjects, rather than hastily with many. The subjects reflect her emphasis on the seven liberal arts, mastery of which develops the content and skills that flow through all of the modern subjects. The Classical Christian opposes premature specialization (specific training in a given subject or skill for its own sake or for practical purposes, e.g. literature, drafting, etc.) or meaningless generalization, seeking instead an education that consistently recognizes the relationship of all skills and subjects to each other and teaches the foundational skills that every later subject requires.*
An education at Harvest is rooted in deep biblical truth, rigorous academics, and artistic expression that seeks to create a whole soul that loves the Lord and loves others.
If you’d like more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
*list adapted from The Circe Institute
Leave Nothing Out
Note: This article was written by Sam Koenen and originally posted at PetraAcademy.com.
One evening this summer, I sat on my front porch and began a short volume of poetry by Wendell Berry. The first poem was only three lines long, but its powerful image forced me to stop reading and to think about its implications.
Though this poem consists of a single image, it contains many wise lessons that all of us—teachers, students, and parents—can seek to apply as the new school year approaches.
Suppose we did our work
like the snow, quietly, quietly,
leaving nothing out.
The poem’s single metaphor is an exhortation for us to work as the snow works. By contemplating what it means for snow to “work”, we can draw four lessons from Berry’s exhortation.