Understanding the Trivium

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The Three Stages of The Trivium

These three stages of learning interact, each one with the other, and complements the way that God created children to learn. Without knowledge there can be no understanding or wisdom. Knowledge and understanding are likewise necessary if there is to be wisdom.

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Stage 1 - Grammar

At this stage, young children are naturally inquisitive and are both willing and able to memorize and recite lots of material. It’s at this age when we help our children absorb tremendous amounts of information with historical and biblical timelines as well as master language with Latin – the Swiss Army Knife of languages – once you know Latin, learning many other languages becomes much easier. We also teach math basics – engrain a math fact in your mind once, you’ll know it forever!


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Stage 2 - Logic

As children grow older, children typically become argumentative. At the Logic Stage is when we teach our children how to think and how to argue using logic. We teach children how things relate to each other – cause and effect. While they’re learning to reason, we also emphasize the teaching of writing. They need to be more than just orators after all, right?


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Stage 3 - Rhetoric

Teaching a child (who is prone to argue) a better way to argue may seem dangerous. Thankfully, they grow out of that stage and move into the Rhetoric Stage, where they become more concerned about how they are perceived. At this stage children are taught Rhetoric and how to communicate winsomely and effectively. This is the final stage of the Trivium. Here children bring the knowledge they learned at the Grammar and Logic Stages and learn how to solve difficult problems, become self-aware, and express what they actually think through speech, papers or in groups.


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