What exactly is Classical education?

Classical education has been around for thousands of years and is a subject that has been hotly debated for some time. There are many articles, books and even documentaries that discuss the merits of this type of education. It is a method of teaching that focuses on the basics of education and encourages students to become lifelong learners. The primary goal of the classical education method is to provide students with a solid foundation for any type of career or life path they may choose in the future. The purpose of this particular article is to explain exactly what Classical education is, and how it came to be. I realize that many students, teachers and parents may not be familiar with the concept of classical education, so I’ll start by defining exactly what it is.

The definition 

Classical education is a collection of educational practice, philosophy, and models that take their roots from the ancient Greek and Roman empires. The term was coined by Hannah Arendt and encompasses many different informal and formal approaches to pedagogy. Classical education originally meant the education of free men in the liberal arts, who were presumed to be citizens and leaders. Originally, classical referred to citizenship (to be a citizen was to be free) and arts came from “Artes Liberales” or “free arts”. In its purest form, Classical education is instruction in Latin and Greek languages, literature, poetry, science (and mathematics) by way of one’s native language.

Why do we need Classical education?

So many people have said that the modern education system is broken and outmoded, that it no longer serves to educate. But the classical education is one of the most effective ideologies out there applied at teaching people, not just about school topics but about their environment and other social factors. It is an age-old method of teaching which helps students to learn facts and also improves their ability to think, to reason, and to communicate effectively.

It is great for children

Classical education can be used at any age and by anyone, but it is especially useful when you are younger because it allows you to create habits that will last throughout life. This approach encourages you to learn things in a specific order that builds upon itself. The subjects are taught sequentially so as you progress through each grade level, your knowledge will build upon what you have already learned in previous years.

This type of education is based on three stages: Grammar, Logic and Rhetoric. In grammar school students learn facts about the world around them; logic teaches them how those facts fit together and make sense; rhetoric shows them how to communicate their ideas effectively.