Classical methodology takes advantage of the developmental stages of children.
- In primary classes, learning is almost exclusively focused on knowledge acquisition, using mostly didactic teaching methods and memorization. Chants, jingles, and songs make that memorization and learning fun. In spite of their young age, however, Socratic dialogue is also incorporated in order to begin to form the foundation for deeper thought.
- In the preteen and early teen years (the logic stage), instruction becomes more analytical, as children learn the arts of debate and critique along with a continuation of knowledge learning. These students are taught to discern what is true and what is false.
- In the secondary years (the rhetoric stage), students are trained to write and speak with eloquence and originality, learning to persuade and to apply the knowledge and understanding they have acquired in their earlier years.
- At all stages, students are not provided with easy answers, but must think deeply and work hard to accomplish the learning objectives. Through Socratic dialogue, notebooking (rather than a lot of “fill-in-the-blank” workbooks), research methods, and chronological organization, we are teaching students how to think and learn.