Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and virtue. 2 Peter 1: 2-3
Classical Christian Education
A Classical Christian education at Windsor Christian Academy recognizes the lordship of Jesus Christ over every area of knowledge and employs the time-tested wisdom of the classical approach, which equips students to be lifelong learners.
Perhaps the educators at the Circe Institute said it best; they define Classical Christian Education “the cultivation of wisdom and virtue by nourishing the soul on truth, goodness, and beauty to the end that, in Christ, the student is better able to know and enjoy God” (2004). This wisdom is “knowledge of first causes and principles; the capacity to order and to judge,” and virtue is “an excellence; a habit that increases mastery of a natural or supernatural power” (Circe Institute 2004). That is to say, we see that each child entrusted to our educational cultivation is a soul who bears the image of God. Our job is to teach them truth and help them to acquire and organize knowledge.
The Classical approach is summarized in three “columns,” or modes, of teaching:
- The teaching of organized knowledge is the first column of the Classical Paideia. It is achieved by means of verbal instruction, textbooks, and other aids in all subjects.
- The second column of the Classical Paideia is the development of intellectual skills and the skills of learning. This development is accomplished through coaching exercises and supervised practice (reading, writing, calculating, problem solving, observing, measuring, estimating, and practicing critical judgment).
- The third Paideia column is understanding. It is the enlarged understanding of ideas and values, and it is accomplished through Socratic questioning and active participation in the discussion of books, works of art, music, drama, and visual arts.
The child who first acquires knowledge, then is mindfully coached to develop his or her acquired knowledge, and is ultimately challenged to understand the acquired, developed knowledge is the child who will truly learn. The Classical model is not new; it is tried and it is true. At Windsor, we treasure the privilege to be able to teach the Logos, “the rational governing principle of the cosmos” (Circe Institute 2003; John 1).
All areas of study are taught through a Classical Christian model. In this way the lordship of Jesus Christ is comprehensive and integral to every subject: the truth of the living Word teaches, models for, and mentors the students.
The scriptures are the final rule of faith and practice. The teachers teach the truth as it is revealed in God’s Word, in the belief that all truth is God’s truth, unified and independent of man.
Through our curriculum, the children will not only be schooled in academic excellence but they will also learn to develop a biblical worldview as their own God-given gifts and talents are carefully nurtured to mature.
At WCA, we are seeking to perpetuate an outlook that honors Christ as Lord of every discipline and subject. At WCA, our curriculum reflects our commitment to teaching a Christian mind. Students, made in the image of God, are guided, corrected, trained, disciplined, encouraged, commended, and praised by our “shepherd-teachers.”
The Curriculum Overview
At WCA, our basic philosophy is to teach children in the ways they naturally want to be taught. The children are taught how to learn with the goal of producing life-long, proactive learners. Each subject is masterfully integrated into the others thus unifying all that is being taught.
In the elementary years, when children are naturally drawn to language, our students will be taught phonics, grammar, syntax, structure, and vocabulary. All grades will also study literature, mathematics, science, history, fine arts, Bible, music, technology, physical education, and Latin.
Elementary students naturally love to accrue facts and they enjoy being given the opportunity to demonstrate what they’ve learned. This is accomplished through singing, recitation, direct instruction, reading, and discussion.
Our middle school students advance a step further as they learn to employ their knowledge through regular Socratic seminar sessions and practice developing logic in writing.
Classical Christian education is learning at its best. Each subject will be not just learned but tackled. The children will be equipped with the tools needed to truly acquire knowledge and they will be taught how to independently apply these tools to any subject.
The Chester County Intermediate Unit provides our students with two learning support specialists, a speech and language specialist and a reading specialist. Their services are available to any child who needs their assistance. This service is free of charge and is an exceptional asset to our program.