American Christian Education Defined

004051I have compiled an explanation of American Christian Education from the writings of Miss Katherine Dang, Mr. James Rose and Mrs Ruth Smith.  For additional information, see my “resources” section.

American Christian Education (our philosophy of education) is implemented through the Principle Approach (our methodology of education).

“The Principle Approach is America’s historic Christian method of Biblical reasoning which makes the truths of God’s Word the basis of every subject in the school’s curriculum.”

The Principle Approach is so effective and distinct from other forms of education in that “…it produces a reflective character, one able to listen to the “still small voice” of conscience which enables us to act appropriately in any circumstance.”  In other words, it builds self government (the ability to control ones self ) in each student.  “In the Principle Approach we slow down, put off the old patterns of secular learning which sometimes seek to propel us into fast ‘fact mastery’.  Our emphasis here is to put our learning into a framework of principles and leading ideas and then relate the facts to the unfoldment of those principles and leading ideas in the subject.  Students become more effective learners as we teach them to become more reflective.”

“The Principle Approach refers also to the Christian method of reasoning from the Holy Bible (the proper and primary authority concerning our view or philosophy of life and living), and how to comprehend all subjects, inclusive of education and government in the home, church, and society.”

This unique philosophy and method considers every academic discipline as a reflection of the nature of God, and emphasizes the principles which enlight the student’s understanding and enables him to master his academic subjects. This historic method of Biblical reasoning is built upon a recognition of the Providence of God in history and the Biblical principles of government upon which our nation was built.

Equipped with the tools of lifelong learning, students are prepared to reason independently and govern themselves by Christian principles.”

American Christian Education:

“1) Challenges the student to develop Biblical reasoning

2) Cultivates individual scholarship by mastering the tools of learning

3) Equips the student for American Christian citizenship

4) Develops the Biblical discernment necessary to address issues of neighborhood, city, county, state, and national government”

“Every philosophy or view of education has its own peculiar set of consequences which are eventually revealed in the lives, character, and conscience of its pupils.” What makes American Christian Education so special and superior is that “…it is the philosophy of education which specifically aims to cultivate the art of self-government, or the art of Biblical reasoning in the individual.  Biblical education by definition is easy and light. Scripture tells us how children are taught: ‘For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.’ Isaiah 28:10. When one is taught the principles by which to reason in a given subject, and then consistently exercised in reasoning from principles, then he becomes free from, and independent of, rote learning.  American Christian education affords the training of individual reasoning in which one may come to his own correct conclusions in any given subject. Below are what may be identifiable characteristics of American Christian education:

1)Liberty for the individual to reflect, believe, and follow principles – as opposed to enslavement to the strict letter of imposed, formulated, standardized answers.

2)Lessons are suited to one’s capacity; given an easy yoke to bear; one is not being given more than he can bear – as opposed to straining under a heavy burden of unreasonable compliance to an arbitrarily standardized load of work.

3)Simple, uncomplicated principles and ideas to master – as opposed to having to master by rote and overwhelming amount of minute facts and information.

In an education with an emphasis on Biblical reasoning, i.e. American Christian education, individual self education begins to occur around the ages of ten through twelve. With adequate guidance the pupil develops a growing capacity to read, reason, write, and research on his own. Herein is the necessity for self-teaching texts and guides. When the Biblical foundations are laid in the childhood years, the path of reasoning and the inspiration for learning is established for individual self teaching. As children are taught to walk on their own, to eat their meals on their own, to dress themselves on their own, and to work on their own, why are we not expectant that they be taught to learn on their own? Is it not reasonable to expect that self-teaching be an outcome of one’s education?

An invaluable consequence of American Christian Education is the pupil’s acquiring the art of self-government or the skill of Biblical reasoning. When children are regularly exercised in their own ability to read and reason, to deduce principles from ideas, to draw inferences and correct conclusions, and then to articulate and write them, this then is the essence of original scholarship.

In truth, one’s own education is his first individual enterprise, the first step towards his pursuit of happiness or his own vocation and livelihood. From God is mankind given a title to his own happiness, his own enjoyment of the fruits of his own labor. Parents and teachers owe the pupil only the rudiments, the first fundamental principles or foundations of life and learning. The pupil owes it to himself to build upon these foundations to reach maturity and adulthood. His years of youth are his years of building and engaging in the self-enterprise of pursuing his own happiness or livelihood.

American Christian Education is a new deal when one considers the conventional aim, content, and approach to education of today. While America is awash with socialism, American Christian Education is the antidote for modern socialism. American Christian Education creates cutting-edge generations, generations not socialized, trained, and accustomed to thinking and acting only as a part of some group. Individuals knowing how to be independently dependent upon the absolute principles of all of life and living will begin the undoing of socialism in America.”

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