The Four Rhythms

Our educational rhythms are governed by four Latin ideals.  When looking at a lesson plan, you can clearly see that each moment comes from one of these four precepts:

Festina Lente (Make Haste Slowly)

Multum non Multa (Not Many Things, but Much)

Repetitio Mater Memoriae (Repetition is the Mother of Memory)

Mirabile Visu (A Wonder to See) in Scholé (Restful Learning

Festina Lente (Make Haste Slowly)

These are the items which layer foundations, keeping the end in mind.  A student needs to grasp each concept fully before moving on to the expansion of further learning.  He or she must understand the sound the letter t makes before reading the word top in kindergarten.  Yet, in second grade, the same student will learn how to write it in cursive.  In fifth grade, that child will be using it to write a character description with the word, “nonchalant”. The levels of the stairs are determined by the grade level.  However, it is the teacher who knows her students well, who sets the pace.

Multum non Multa (Not Many Things, but Much)

We practice this by structuring our school in a seven week cycle within each grade level.  Each grade level has activities and concepts that they need to visit frequently. As they come to the specific topic or idea, they will grasp it in greater detail.  This spiraling allows information to be re-visited with greater maturity and a wider range of skills each time the material is presented. For instance, students work on grade-level “clock work” every seven weeks instead of it being only one isolated unit.  But, because it is one of our “Multum non Multa” ideas, working with the clock is also something that we emphasize daily, coming back to it again and again.

Repetitio Mater Memoriae (Repetition is the Mother of Memory)

We ask students to memorize poems, Latin vocabulary, and many other building blocks such as grammar rules.  This memorized material gives awareness and language to students’ ability to see the world around them.

However, we also practice this repetition in our rhythms. We daily hold the same routines and schedules (although we also use the flexibility of Fabulous Fridays).  Weekly, we perform many activities according to the day of the week. Although content might change due to Festina Lente, most Mondays have the same activities as other Mondays, Tuesdays resemble other Tuesdays. We also have yearly activities the children look forward to such as our The Day of the Royal Kings and Queens Festival.

Mirabile Visu (A Wonder to See)  in Scholé (Restful Learning

Our school flows in a four year rotation, giving students time to sit with beautiful ideas, stories, bodies of knowledge, and subjects. These are the things we do as a school.  This allows learning to migrate to the car, the kitchen table, and the entertainment and adventure choices of our families. Thes rotation is featured in Latin vocabulary, geography, history, science, songs, and art work.

Year A Concepts: 

Where we Live, Map Reading Skills, Continents, the Orion Family, Explorers, Space, Water, Simple Machines, Electricity

Year B Concepts:

The countries of Africa, the Ursa Major Family, Ancient Egypt, Animals and Habitats

Year C Concepts:

The countries of Europe and Asia, the Zodiac Family, Ancient Greece and Rome, Botany, Earth Science

Year D Concepts:

The countries of North and South America, The United States, Virginia, the Hercules Family, the Human Body

“Ut haec ipsa qui non sentiat deorum vim habere is nihil omnino sensurus esse videatur.”

If any man cannot feel the power of God when he looks upon the stars, 

then I doubt whether he is capable of any feeling at all.”  ― Horace