Schole in Classical Education: The Power of Meditating on Concepts.

Schole, a Latin word meaning leisure or rest, is an integral part of classical Christian education. It refers to the practice of using leisure time for intellectual or spiritual growth. It is designed to encourage students to engage deeply with ideas rather than simply memorizing information. This learning method encourages students to develop critical thinking skills, improve creativity and problem-solving abilities, and gain a sense of personal fulfillment. In this article, we will explore the origins and benefits of schole in classical Christian education and how it differs from traditional, modern education from a Christian perspective.

Rebbecca Devitt

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Schole is typically done in high school by classical education students. The idea is that they learn great facts in the earlier years, then learn how to argue logically, and then they learn how to speak and ponder wisely (which is schole).

But, let’s learn more about the definition of schole below.

Do students really think and meditate on what they learn these days? Schole is introducing this ancient practice back into classical education.

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What is the Meaning of Schole?

Schole is a Latin word that means “leisure” or “rest,” and it is often used in the context of classical education to refer to the idea of using leisure time for the purpose of intellectual or spiritual growth.

In this context, “schole” can refer to the practice of meditating on concepts or ideas to deepen one’s understanding of them and improve one’s ability to think critically and creatively.

The goal of schole is not simply to acquire knowledge but to engage in the process of lifelong learning and personal growth.

What is Classical Education, Again?

Before we continue, let’s revise what classical education is.

Classical education is a method of education that emphasizes the development of critical thinking skills and the ability to analyze and evaluate ideas through the study of the trivium which includes grammar, logic, and rhetoric.

It is based on the idea that education should be a lifelong pursuit of wisdom and knowledge rather than just acquiring information.

Students typically study a broad range of subjects, such as literature, history, philosophy, science, and the arts. If you’re interested in learning more about classical education, you may want to watch my video on the topic.

Why Would Students Do Schole?

Okay, back to thinking about schole. What would a person benefit from pondering on subject matter like they do with schole?

Well, students might engage in schole for a variety of reasons. Some of the benefits of schole include:

  • Developing critical thinking skills: Schole encourages students to engage deeply with ideas rather than simply memorizing information (although in the grammar stage they start with memorizing information). This can help students learn how to analyze and evaluate ideas, which are important skills for success in many areas of life.
  • Improving creativity and problem-solving abilities: Schole can help students think more creatively by exposing them to a wide range of ideas and perspectives and encouraging them to make connections between different subjects.
  • Gaining a sense of personal fulfillment: Engaging in deep, meaningful learning can be a rewarding experience in and of itself. Many students find that exploring new ideas and perspectives brings a sense of personal fulfillment.
  • Preparing for college and career: Schole can help students build the skills they need to be successful in college and in their future careers, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity.
  • Encouraging lifelong learning: Schole emphasizes the importance of ongoing learning and personal growth, which can help students develop habits and attitudes that will serve them well throughout their lives.

Topics to Do Schole With (Examples)

There are many different topics that students might engage in schole with. Some examples include:

  • Literature: Students might read and analyze classic works of literature, such as novels, poetry, and plays, to gain a deeper understanding of the human experience and the craft of writing.
  • History: Students might study the events and individuals that have shaped different civilizations and cultures to gain a deeper understanding of the past and its impact on the present.
  • Philosophy: Students might study the ideas and arguments of great philosophers to gain a deeper understanding of the nature of reality, morality, and human existence.
  • Science: Students might study different branches of science, such as physics, biology, and chemistry, to gain a deeper understanding of the natural world and the scientific method.
  • Theology: Students might study the beliefs and practices of different religions to gain a deeper understanding of the spiritual dimension of human experience.
  • Art and Music: Students might study the great works of art and music to gain a deeper understanding of the creative process and the ways in which art can express ideas and emotions.
  • Current events: Students might study and analyze current events to understand the societal, economic, and political impacts on the world.

These are just a few examples, but schole could be applied to any topic that students find interesting and want to explore in more depth. The important aspect is the process of engagement and exploration rather than just acquiring information.

What is schole in classical education?

Why Did Ancient People Employ Schole So Much?

Ancient people used schole for many of the same reasons that it is used today. Some of the benefits of schole that were particularly valuable in ancient times include:

  • Developing wisdom: In ancient societies, wisdom was highly valued and considered a necessary virtue for living a good life. Schole provided an opportunity for individuals to engage deeply with ideas and gain a deeper understanding of the world, which was seen as a way to develop wisdom.
  • Preserving cultural heritage: In ancient societies, oral tradition was essential for preserving stories, myths, and other cultural traditions. Schole allowed individuals to learn these stories and pass them down to future generations.
  • Preparing for leadership roles: In ancient societies, individuals who were well-educated and wise were often chosen for leadership roles. Schole provided an opportunity for individuals to develop the knowledge and skills needed to be influential leaders.
  • Improving critical thinking: In ancient societies, critical thinking was essential for solving problems, making decisions, and understanding complex issues. Schole provided an opportunity for individuals to develop their critical thinking skills.
  • Gaining a sense of personal fulfillment: Engaging in profound, meaningful learning can be a rewarding experience in and of itself. Many ancient people found that exploring new ideas and perspectives brought a sense of personal fulfillment.
  • Encouraging lifelong learning: Many ancient people understood that learning is a lifelong process and that one should always strive to understand more about the world and themselves. Schole emphasized the importance of ongoing learning and personal growth, which can help individuals develop habits and attitudes that will serve them well throughout their lives.

Schole in classical education provides a unique approach for students to delve deeper into knowledge, allowing them to gain a more profound understanding compared to traditional education methods typically offer.

Classical Education vs Modern Traditional Education

Classical education, which includes the practice of schole, differs from traditional, modern education in several ways.

  • Classical education emphasizes the development of critical thinking skills and the ability to analyze and evaluate ideas. In contrast, traditional, modern education tends to focus more on the memorization of facts and information.
  • Classical education encourages students to explore a wide range of subjects, including literature, history, philosophy, science, and the arts, to gain a well-rounded understanding of the world. In contrast, traditional, modern education tends to focus more on specific academic subjects.
  • Classical education emphasizes the pursuit of wisdom and personal growth. In contrast, traditional, modern education tends to focus more on the acquisition of knowledge and the attainment of good grades.
  • The process of Schole, encourages students to engage in meditating on concepts and ideas, which can lead to a deeper understanding and personal fulfillment, whereas traditional modern education focuses more on getting through the material as quickly as possible.

It is important to note that both approaches have their own strengths and weaknesses, and different methods work for different students.

However, classical education’s focus on critical thinking, a well-rounded education, personal growth, and a deeper understanding may be more beneficial for some students in the long term.

Learn about how to meditate on the things you learn in your curriculum.

Schole and Meditating on Scripture

Schole can be particularly valuable for those who wish to deepen their understanding of Christian scriptures.

By taking the time to meditate on passages from the Bible, individuals can gain a deeper understanding of the gospel, teachings and message of Christianity and how they apply to their lives.

Schole encourages one to slow down and take the time to ponder the meaning of the scriptures.

Through this practice, individuals can develop a stronger personal connection to God and a deeper understanding of His word.

Additionally, studying the scripture using the classical method of schole can provide a deeper understanding of the cultural and historical context that the scripture was written in, providing a more holistic understanding of the scripture.

Schole and Debating

Schole can be a valuable tool for students who wish to improve their debating skills.

Debating is an activity that requires critical thinking, the ability to analyze and evaluate ideas, and the ability to communicate effectively. Schole encourages students to engage deeply with ideas, rather than simply memorizing information, which can help them develop the skills they need to be successful debaters.

Through the practice of schole, students can learn to analyze and evaluate arguments from different perspectives, which can help them prepare for debates. They can also learn how to articulate their own ideas and arguments clearly and persuasively. Furthermore, schole can also help students develop the ability to think on their feet and respond to counterarguments, which is an essential skill in debate.

Debating with schole can also help students become more open-minded by exposing them to different perspectives and ideas. It can also help students develop their listening and communication skills by encouraging them to engage with their opponents and understand their perspectives actively.

Overall, schole can be a valuable tool for students who wish to improve their debating skills by developing critical thinking, the ability to analyze and evaluate ideas, and the ability to communicate effectively. It can also help them become more open-minded by exposing them to different perspectives and ideas and encouraging them to engage with their opponents actively.

Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Ethics, Law, Technology, and Medicine

Schole can be applied to many other topics as well. Some additional examples include:

  • Entrepreneurship: Schole can help students develop the skills they need to be successful entrepreneurs, such as creativity, problem-solving, and thinking outside the box.
  • Leadership: Schole can help students develop the skills they need to be influential leaders, such as critical thinking, decision-making, and communicating effectively.
  • Ethics: Schole can help students explore different ethical theories and principles, and apply them to real-world situations, which can help them develop a solid moral compass.
  • Environmental studies: Schole can help students explore different environmental issues and the impact of human activity on the planet, and develop the skills they need to be effective stewards of the earth.
  • Law: Schole can help students understand the intricacies of law, and how it applies to different areas of society.
  • Technology: Schole can help students explore different technologies and their implications, and develop the skills they need to be effective problem solvers in a world increasingly driven by technology.
  • Medicine: Schole can help students understand the intricacies of the human body, and how it works.

As you can see, Schole can be applied to many different topics, as it is a method of deep engagement and exploration, rather than just acquiring information. The key is to find a topic that interests you and to explore it in more depth.

What Are Some Classical Homeschool Curriculum Options?

If you’re loving the sound of this type of education, make sure you have a look at the following classical homeschool curriculum list:

  • Memoria Press: Memoria Press is a publisher of classical education materials, including textbooks, study guides, and teacher’s manuals. They offer a complete boxed curriculum for grades K-12, which includes subjects such as literature, history, science, and mathematics. They also provide a classical Christian education option that incorporates Christian worldview and theology in the curriculum. Check out a review of Memoria Press or look at their curriculum directly here.
  • Compass Classroom: Compass Classroom provides online classical education resources, including video lessons featuring famous speakers like R.C. Sproul and Francis Schaeffer, quizzes, and tests. They offer a complete curriculum for grades 3-12, which includes subjects such as literature, history, science, and mathematics. Check out a review of Compass Classroom here or look at their curriculum directly here.
  • My Father’s World: My Father’s World is a publisher of Christian-based classical education materials, including textbooks, study guides, and teacher’s manuals. They offer an eclectic curriculum for grades K-12 that incorporates the Charlotte Mason, Unit Studies, and Classical approach. Check out a review of My Father’s World here or look at their curriculum directly here.
  • Classical Conversations: Classical Conversations is a program that provides support and resources for homeschooling families who want to use the classical method. They offer a complete curriculum for grades K-12, which includes subjects such as literature, history, science, and mathematics. They also provide a classical Christian education option that incorporates Christian worldview and theology in the curriculum. The program is done in a co-op a few times a week, so children and parents can have more community. Check out a review of Compass Classroom here or look at their curriculum directly here.
  • Classical Academic Press: Classical Academic Press is a publisher of classical education materials, including textbooks, study guides, and teacher’s manuals. They offer a complete curriculum for grades K-12, which includes subjects such as literature, history, science, and mathematics. They also provide a classical Christian education option that incorporates Christian worldview and theology in the curriculum. You can look at their curriculum directly here.

Each program has its own unique flavor and some will use schole more heavily than others.

Do students really think and meditate on what they learn these days? Schole is introducing this ancient practice back into classical education.Schole Homeschooling: A Setting to Beat All Others

Schole can be especially beneficial in the Christian homeschooling setting, as it allows students to engage deeply with ideas and concepts from a biblical perspective – students rarely get this opportunity if they go to school. It’s usually too busy and the schedule is too packed.

In a homeschooling environment, students often have more flexibility and control over their learning schedule, which means they can take the time to meditate on Christian scripture and other texts in a way that is not always possible in a traditional school setting. This can foster a deeper understanding of their faith and how it relates to the world around them.

Furthermore, the homeschooling setting also allows for more opportunities for parent-child conversations and discussions, which can be a valuable component of the schole method. Parents can guide their children as they explore and reflect on different concepts, and can provide valuable insights and perspectives from their own experiences. This can foster a deeper understanding of the material and can help students see how the concepts they are learning apply to their own lives.

Additionally, Christian homeschooling can also provide opportunities for students to engage in activities that reflect their faith such as reading Christian literature, memorizing scripture, and participating in Christian service projects, which all can be considered as part of the schole practice.

Overall, the homeschooling setting can provide an ideal environment for incorporating the practice of schole into Christian education, as it allows students to engage deeply with ideas and concepts from a biblical perspective while having more opportunities for parent-child conversations and discussions and engaging in activities that reflect their faith.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, schole is an important aspect of classical Christian education that provides students with the opportunity to engage in deep, meaningful learning. It encourages students to develop critical thinking skills, improve creativity and problem-solving abilities, and gain a sense of personal fulfillment. The practice of schole has been used for centuries to preserve cultural heritage and to prepare individuals for leadership roles. It emphasizes the importance of ongoing learning and personal growth, which can help students develop habits and attitudes that will serve them well throughout their lives. Additionally, the Christian perspective on education holds that the pursuit of wisdom and knowledge is not only important for personal growth, but also for glorifying God. By understanding the benefits of schole, Christian educators, students, and parents can make an informed decision on how to best approach education from a biblical perspective.

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Rebecca Devitt

Most adults don't particularly want to relive their schooling experience on a daily basis. They would gladly move on to a new life devoid of homework and teachers. Very, very few adults will passionately blog about their schooling some 15 years after graduating. This makes Rebecca Devitt somewhat unique. As it happens, she was homeschooled. And she loved it. Still does. And she wishes every kid could get a taste of homeschooling at its very best. Her website How Do I Homeschool, is a springboard for parents to see what a life of homeschooling could be for both them & their children. When she's not blogging Rebecca is still homeschooling her-adult-self by learning Latin, growing weird vegetables and most importantly looking after her two children Luke & Penny. She has a husband Tristan and is a participant at Wollongong Baptist Church. She's also written a book about why parents should homeschool called 'Why on Earth Homeschool'.

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