Grammar (K–6th grade)
The Augustine Grammar School is where our students gain knowledge and it corresponds to the first stage of "Trivium." Young Augustine students are naturally inclined to memorize the many facts and particulars of each subject area. The grammar stage corresponds approximately with the elementary school years. Kindergarten is a half day and 1st–6th a full day. Students learn and memorize the grammar of math (addition and subtraction facts, multiplication tables, the ordering of time and money), geography (mountains, rivers, state capitals), science (formulas, definitions), and history (wars, kings, dates).
Through art, music, math, science, history, geography, poetry and literature, students are presented with examples of beauty–God’s aesthetic and order revealed. They learn to observe and look for God’s hand in their studies, from the weaving of history (God’s story) to the paintings of the masters; from the themes of the Gospel (stories of conflict and redemption) to the intricate patterns of mathematics. All studies provide an opportunity to learn more about God: his world and his word. Students are taught that beauty matters, and are provided with tools to create beauty.
By fostering community with small class sizes and whole-class learning, students learn from their early school days that their classmates are their encouragers. Together, students’ hearts are “knit together in love” (Colossians 2:2) as they grow side-by-side. Our eager and enthusiastic students engage in their studies with vigor. Teachers provide the building blocks of learning for phonics, writing, grammar, science, history, geography, math, and spelling and students play with these blocks each day. They sing, chant, recite, illustrate, and dramatize key facts and concepts to solidify their knowledge base. For young students, such work is play–a natural extension of their development at this age. Teachers gently shepherd students’ hearts, helping them to see how their actions affect others.
Structure surrounds the Augustine grammar classroom, providing familiar routines and clear boundaries within which students will grow secure and confident. Seeds sown in these younger years will yield fruit later as students blossom into disciplined, articulate scholars, capable of articulating their faith. At Augustine we are delighted to join hands with like-minded parents in this important task of discipling children.
As students grow their minds mature. Their reading and writing becomes more complex; their math studies more challenging. They continue the narrative of history, from the Age of Exploration to the modern day, again seeking God’s hand in all they learn. By reading historical fiction and primary sources, they carefully consider the consequences of events and imagine what it might have been like to walk in another’s shoes, developing empathy and compassion along with a broader view of history and its implications. Through their science studies, they hone skills of observation and analysis.
Formal Latin studies begin in the 4th grade, adding a new perspective and understanding to English language and grammar as well as establishing early stages of logical thinking.