Elementary School at Bradford Academy
Nurturing a Love for Knowledge
When you walk down the hall at Bradford Academy’s elementary school, you will hear singing and groups of children chanting famous poems and quotes. You might hear other students reciting math facts, Latin conjugations, or elements of the periodic table.
On the other hand, you might hear nothing at all.
When you peek into those quiet classrooms you shouldn’t be surprised to see students hard at work. You might find them creating beautiful drawings while listening to Mozart or just reading. You shouldn’t be surprised to find second graders practicing their cursive by copying the Bible memory verse of the week.
As a matter of fact, you might be surprised by the quality work being done by third graders writing stories about Greek mythology, fifth graders composing original poems, or fourth graders testing their knowledge of the Nicene Creed.
In contrast, you might peek into a class bursting with energy. Then you’ll see projects and experiments in process. You might find Greek armor being constructed, Hobbits and dwarves fighting giant spiders, the Cat in the Hat telling us that “I do like green eggs and ham!” or barbarians invading Rome.
There are many things that make up the elementary school experience at Bradford Academy. However, the one common thing across the board are the smiles on the faces of our students. They have come to love learning. They have learned to enjoy knowledge because knowing things is fun and God’s world is wondrous!
Knowledge is the foundation.
It is hard to repair a poor or weak foundation. In other words, if we intend to build well we need to start well. Bradford Academy focuses on building a strong foundation of basic knowledge and skills in the early years because concrete knowledge is the necessary prerequisite to critical thinking and abstract thought. In other words, if we want critical thinkers, our students need something to think about.
Our predecessors in education knew that knowledge comes before understanding and we couldn’t know the logic of things until we had the facts (or the grammar) of things. Children can remember incredible amounts of information when they sing the information.
Furthermore, young children feel a sense of success when they can recite a list of Roman emperors and Grandma glowingly praises them. As a matter of fact, most young children don’t mind memorization and repetition, so our teachers buy up the opportunity to fill young minds with information. The strong foundation that is laid in those early years makes our middle school teachers especially thankful!
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