Classical & Lutheran Education

What is classical education? Basically, it is a way of education that gets back to the basics. It is a return to the older way of education, particularly before Dewey brought in progressive education in the early 1900s.

The classical approach to education believes that the student (from ages 6-11) has the ability to memorize large amounts of material even though they may not understand its significance. This is called the Grammar stage. Whether it is in History, Geography, Science, or Mathematics, this is the time to fill the student full of facts, dates and events.

The teacher is not afraid to have the student memorize. Its also a time to teach them a
language, particularly Latin. Latin is especially valuable because it is the key to the vocabulary of all the sciences and to the literature of the ancient civilizations.

During the Logic or Dialectic stage, the middle school student (from ages 12-14) begins to understand that which he has learned and begins to use his reason to ask questions based on the information that he has gathered in the grammar stage. Taking a formal Logic class at this stage can be a great aid so that the student learns the rules that guide sound thinking. They learn how to use language; how to define terms and make accurate statements; how to construct an argument and how to detect fallacies in argument. Teachers select books not on the basis of what will entertain the students, but on the basis of what will help them develop their minds.

During the Rhetoric stage – particularly during the high school age – the student learns how to present the knowledge he has learned into a well reasoned and
persuasive form. He learns how to say things elegantly and persuasively and how to defend his thesis. However, theology is the most important part of education.

At Faith Lutheran School we teach our students Scripture, the Small Catechism and hymns. The world will want to teach our children differently. It will want to destroy our children’s faith in Christ. Therefore, we must be proactive in keeping our children in the
faith.

At Faith Lutheran School, we begin and end each day with Scripture, the Small Catechism, hymns and prayer. We study and memorize God’s Word. Chapel is held every Wednesday. Our children who are well taught by Scripture and by the Small Catechism will be the future of our church.

Theology is called “The Queen of the Sciences.” Science was considered natural, moral, and theological. The most important of these three was theology, and it was considered the capstone to education. Theology and education go together. An education that cultivates the mind to think will help the student understand Scripture. Scripture then shapes what is learned in education. The two go hand in hand. Each one assists the other. Theology is the most important content of education because it helps us view history and literature through the lens of God’s Word. It reveals our salvation in Christ and guides us on how to love one another. We want this theology to be Lutheran.

May God give us the ability to faithfully teach the faith to our children. May Scripture, the Small Catechism, hymns and prayer be a regular part of our life. May education at Faith Lutheran School and in our homes support the faith confessed in Scripture and in our
Lutheran Confessions.

Theology matters when it comes to education. We want a correct teaching of Scripture so that there may be faith in God and love toward one another. May God bless Faith Lutheran School with a good “classical” and “Lutheran” education.

In Christ,
Pastor Woelmer
Summer 2018