Classical Education

The Trivium

St. Paul Lutheran School follows a classical education model for its curriculum and approach to teaching and learning that is fully accredited by the Consortium for Classical Lutheran Education. We believe there are three stages to learning, commonly called the Trivium:

  1. Grammar, which focuses on learning facts

  2. Logic, which focuses on understanding

  3. Rhetoric, which focuses on integration and synthesis

In the Grammar stage, the student is a sponge; they want to see all the dots connected and have someone show them how they connect. In the Logic stage, the student can see the dots but wants to connect them himself. In the final stage, the Rhetoric stage, the student learns to synthesize all he has learned; not only can he connect the dots but produce them as well.

This systematic, rigorous approach to teaching and learning dates back to the ancient Greeks and has served Western Civilization for millennia in teaching and integrating knowledge into a cohesive unit. A 2010 study comparing traditional Lutheran schools to classical Lutheran schools demonstrated consistently higher test scores in four areas (reading, language, mathematics, and core total) for all grades of the classical Lutheran schools compared to the non-classical Lutheran schools.

Our Curriculum

In a culture where schools have become consumed with mere competency and basic skills, classical education seeks to transform, elevate, and refine the mind and the soul to create a life-long love of learning. Wisdom, eloquence, virtue, and beauty are end goals.

Our curriculum includes the teaching of:

  • Science

  • History

  • Latin - Why Latin?

  • Logic

  • Physical Education

  • Art

  • Music

History, Literature, and the Arts

Our classical, multi-grade model implements a linear focus on history. A congruent timeline is used to direct the teaching of history, art, music, and literature and improves the conversations among students at all grade levels. In Year A, we focus on Ancient History. Students read about the Greek and Roman gods and goddesses and they memorize the geography of the Ancient World. The students are immersed in this time of history through the art, music, theatre, and literature of the Ancient World. In Year B, students focus on the Middle Ages up to the Reformation. Year C focuses on the Age of Exploration to the Modern Age. Students are truly immersed in these time periods throughout the entire year and have more than a limited snapshot that typical history units provide.


The Teaching of Reading

St. Paul Lutheran School believes that the ability to read is the most important skill to be taught to elementary children to ensure their academic growth and success in school. Our school pledges itself to the teaching of phonics as the foundation for learning to read. Children are taught the basic building blocks of the English language, including proper spelling, punctuation, grammar, and sentence structure. Literacy is fostered in our students by grounding them in the skills necessary to read and write the English language.


Science classes in the lower grades equip the students using the Scientific Method. Each quarter, students' focus changes from one science discipline to another. The grammar content of that subject is covered throughout the quarter. Students in the upper grades refer back to the grammar content as they spend more time in the dialectic exploring their Memoria Press Science texts. Science in the upper grades work on a three year cycle, which allows students to begin to grasp the different science disciplines of biology, chemistry, astronomy, and physics.

For further information, please see our Classical Education Resources.