Why We Teach Latin, Logic & Rhetoric

Why We Teach Latin:
1. Latin greatly improves vocabulary acquisition.  Over 50% of English words are derived from Latin.
2. The study of Latin grammar helps in understanding the nature of grammar which carries over to English.
3. The study of Latin can provide an excellent foundation for the study and mastery of other languages.  Romance languages such as Spanish, French, and Italian are direct descendants of Latin.
4. Professional careers such as law and medicine find the base of many of their technical terms and names in Latin.
5. The precision of Latin provides its students with a powerful, persuasive tool.  Students are able to draw from their knowledge of Latin roots to equip them with the right words in the right context when needed.

Why We Teach Logic:
1. Logic seeks to discover the laws by which we exercise our God-given ability to distinguish between correct and incorrect reasoning.  The study of Logic is an aid to improve reasoning and to sharpen the mind through intellectual rigor.
2. The use of formal and informal Logic presupposes ABSOLUTE UNCHANGING TRUTH and that this truth has authority over us.  The education of young people in TRUTH is vital, but cannot be complete without a knowledge of Logic.
3. Logic is fundamental; no distinctive human activity can occur without thought.  Unless the next generation of Christians is trained to think correctly, our children will face overwhelming opposition from worldly philosophy.
4. Knowing how to argue and think correctly is essential in studying the Bible and proclaiming the Gospel.  The foundation of Logic is the mind of God.

Why We Teach Rhetoric:
1. Rhetoric is the art of speaking well.  It must be used to communicate complex matters to the uneducated or uninformed.
2. Having studied grammar and logic, Rhetoric students in classical Christian schools will now be given the instruction needed to weave these disciplines into effective speech and writing.  Learning how to win arguments is presented in Logic; Rhetoric guides students in learning how to win people.
3. Orators must possess the following faculties which Rhetoric addresses:

  • Invention: devising matter to make the case convincing.
  • Arrangement: the ordering of matter to make it clear.
  • Style: the adaptation of suitable words and sentences.
  • Memory: the firm retention in the mind of matter, words and arrangement.
  • Delivery: the graceful regulation of voice, countenance and gesture.