Aquinas Learning
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Program Overview

Aquinas Learning

Program Overview

The Aquinas Learning Program is a Catholic, classical, community-based integrated curriculum for homeschooling families from PK - 12th grade.

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CATHOLIC

We teach the Catechism of the Catholic Church as a subject, but we also live our Faith by studying the lives of the Saints, weekly virtues, the liturgical calendar, ethics through literature, and reasoning through logic and philosophy to lead students to act based on right reason.

The ultimate goal is to fulfill our purpose. God made us to know, love, and serve Him in this life, so that we can be happy with Him for eternity in the next.

”The glory of God is man fully alive.” - St. Ireneus

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CLASSICAL

The classical approach to education is the mode by which culture, tradition, and truths have been transmitted for several generations.  The content is based on Philippians 4:6-9, and the approach is based on Aristotle's teachings about how humans learn. It is logocentric because it focuses on the logos as the central unifying idea to which every topic, subject, concept points - He IS Truth!

We teach students to BEHOLD, WONDER, CONTEMPLATE and DO.

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COMMUNITY

Whether you are using Aquinas Learning at Home independently or at a homeschool center licensed to use the Aquinas Learning Program, we are all connected to the Aquinas Learning Community at large.

Since we’re all learning the same material regardless of location or the children’s ages, we can engage in the conversation in unison: asking questions, sharing ideas, sharing experiences, etc.

 

What Does Aquinas Learning Offer?

  • Catholic Core - our Catholic Faith informs all aspects of our program, from teaching ideas, facts, and skills, to living the traditions  (Saints of the week, feast days, virtues, service projects, and liturgical calendar). Central is the teaching of Scriptures and the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

  • Thematic 28-week curriculum taught in 3-cycles of content – All students learn the same content in a given year from one of the cycles below.  They repeat that cycle 4 years later at a higher level, at an older age. Foundational ideas, information, and skills that marinate them in truth, goodness, and beauty, preparing them for the Schola Alta Aquinas Learning curriculum in middle school and high school.

    • Cycle 1 themes: Old Testament, Ancient History, Biology, and Earth Science

    • Cycle 2 themes: New Testament, Medieval History, Astronomy, and Physics

    • Cycle 3 themes: Catechism of the Catholic Church, Modern & American History, Chemistry, and Anatomy

  • Reinforced Curriculum – Relearning the same material 4 years later, helps to  reinforce the curriculum and leads to better retention and a deeper understanding of the materials studied and experienced.

  • Integration – Integrations is woven into the curriculum across the various subjects in order to form a bigger picture rather than a collection of unrelated subjects, which gives more relevance to their studies.

  • Family-friendly experience - everyone in the family is learning the same topics at different levels, which is conducive to shared family discussions, interests, and experiences, such as field trips.

  •  Mixed-aged levels – Students can study content from the 3 cycles at one level and restudy the content when they move up to the next level.  Both at a center or at home, this also teaches leadership in that older students at a given level (e.g. 3rd grader in Prima I) are encouraged to help mentor younger students in that level (e.g. 1st grader in Prima I).

  • 28-weeks of material – Included in the program is a Curriculum Overview, which lists the topics to be learned in each subject in a given week for 28 weeks,  making parent lesson planning about adding more relevance and experiences integrated with the topics studied

  • Emphasis on Rhetoric Skills - whether it be phonics, penmanship, and oral presentations in the younger levels or grammar, composition, and persuasive speeches in the upper levels, we place an emphasis on the importance of rhetoric skills

  • Course Site - Our curriculum is housed in an online course site, where registered families can readily pull up the curriculum components in a weekly block

  • Community - whether you use the Aquinas Learning curriculum independently in your home or join a center licensed to use the Aquinas Learning curriculum, you are joining a community of like-minded homeschoolers with the same goal in mind: to cultivate wisdom and virtue by contemplating and acting upon “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, anything that is excellent or worthy of praise,” ...so that “the God of peace will be with us.” (Philippians 4:6-9)

Levels of Learning

Curriculum Components

  • Memory Works for Focus Subjects (studied in 3 cycles):

  • Catechism – Old Testament, New Testament, Moral Life, Prayer Life, Sacraments, Creed, Saints, Liturgical Calendar, and Virtues

  • History – Study history chronologically from Ancient to Modern Times

  • Timeline – a chronology of events from creation to St. John Paul II learned every year

  • Geography – World Geography integrated with History studies: Middle East & Africa for cycle 1; Europe & Asia for cycle 2; and the Americas for cycle 3

  • Science – Biology, Earth Science, Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, and Anatomy – seeing God’s design in creation

  • Civics – various government structures, events and early documents that influenced the founding of the U.S., the Constitution and Bill of Rights

  • Latin/Greek – to better learn English Vocabulary with Latin & Greek roots, to learn the cadence of the classical languages, and to learn the prayers in the language of the Church - Ecclesiastical Latin

  • Literature - reading what we call “Good Books” with Socratic discussion, prepping the student for the “Great Books” conversation

  • Philosophy - discussing ideas, developing reasoning skills

  • Fine Arts - beholding beauty with art and music appreciation, and learning to do the skills involved such as drawing, painting, sculpting, singing hymns, reading, and singing chant

  • Science Labs - beholding and wondering about God’s world while performing some science investigations

  • Oral presentations - at all levels, from show and tell at the PreK level to persuasive speeches in rhetoric

  • Language Arts – including: Phonics (decoding), Penmanship, Grammar, Composition, Vocabulary, and Copy Work

  • Math - at-home study using the Math Mammoth curriculum (with the flexibility of swapping to another math curriculum.)