The Principle Approach
Philosophy of Education
“The Principle approach is a historic Christian method of Biblical reasoning, which makes the Truths of God’s Word the basis of every subject in the school curriculum. “ –Rosalie June Slater
“Because the Principle Approach is a way of thinking, it delivers a ‘renewing the mind’ benefit that causes all of life and learning to be seen through a Biblical lens of love and destiny. The renewing process takes time and thought.” –Carole Adams
Definition of Education
n. [L. educatio.] The bringing up, as of a child; instruction; formation of manners. Education comprehends all that series of instruction and discipline which is intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, and form the manners and habits of youth, and fit them for usefulness in their future stations. To give children a good education in manners, arts and science, is important; to give them a Christian education is indispensable; and an immense responsibility rests on parents and guardians who neglect these duties. (American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828)
In Genesis 1:28 God told Adam and Eve to "...Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth..." We believe that in order to successfully fulfill this command, we must properly train those who are to be the influencers of tomorrow - our children - in the Biblical principles from which all truth is derived and upon which a successful and powerful life is built. These principles are:
The Seven Principles of Valeo Academy
"Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is Liberty." –2 Corinthians 3:17
God’s Principle of Individuality: Everything in God’s universe reveals His infinity and diversity. Each person is a unique creation of God, designed to express the nature of Christ individually in society. Our privilege and responsibility as parents and teachers is to cultivate the full potential of Christ in every child.
The Christian Principle of Self-Government: In order to have true liberty, man must be governed internally by the Spirit of God rather than by external forces. Government is first individual, then extends to the home, church, and the community. This principle of self-government is God ruling internally from the heart of the individual.
Our Heritage of Christian Character: The image of God engraved upon the individual within brings dominion and change to his external environment. The model of Christian character is the Spirit-filled character, which demonstrates these qualities: faith and steadfastness, brotherly love, Christian care, diligence and industry, and liberty of conscience. Becoming accountable for one’s learning and productivity is the fruit of Christian character. And being led by God’s Spirit is the demonstration of the greatest character of all.
“Conscience Is the Most Sacred of All Property” : (James Madison). God requires faithful stewardship of all His gifts, especially the internal property of conscience. This is a tool for self-government as each student learns the revelation of consent. Each individual governs his life through the voluntary consent to think right or wrong; which leads to doing right or wrong.
The Christian Form of Our Government: The divine flow of spiritual power in a Christian Constitutional Republic and Democracy begins with self-governing individuals, whose God-given rights are protected by laws established by their elected representatives. Proper government requires a balance of internal power and its external form as seen in the separation of powers and its dual form with checks and balances. The Christian form of our government finds its source in the Holy Scriptures, “the American political textbook.”
How the Seed of Local Self-Government Is Planted: Christian self-government begins with salvation and education in God’s Principles and Love, and flows in governing oneself, one’s home, church, and community. Even in the family group or the classroom, individuals must take responsibility or blame, in order to discover and correct errors. “Liberty is an individual responsibility” (Samuel Adams).
The Christian Principle of Unity with Diversity: Internal agreement or unity, which is invisible, produces a voluntary external union, which is visible in the spheres of community, government, economics, and home life. This is not uniformity where everyone strives to be the same. Before two or more individuals can act effectively together, they must first be united in spirit, in their purposes, and in their convictions, while appreciating and respecting their differences and distinctions.
Unity is not uniformity. And diversity is not ‘division’. The scripture teaches us to “Let there be no division among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:10.) We believe in the celebration of diversity.
Racism is an assault on the diversity of God’s creation. More specifically, it is an assault on God Himself, whose image is imprinted on every man, woman, and child, REGARDLESS of their race, age, IQ or financial or social status.
These are the principles that stem from a Biblical worldview; and these are the principles that govern Valeo Academy. It is these principles that form a godly life, a family, or a nation.
This Principle Approach to education is classical in style.
A classical education is not merely the study of Homer, Latin, and Greek. It is a systematic method by which children understand the origin and process of things, cause and effect, and the wisdom of God, thereby pouring forth the revelation they get from that understanding.
This Classical approach to education allows children to develop their education through three stages:
In the first stage, K - 4th grade, the foundations and the building blocks of learning are established in every subject.
In the second stage, 5th - 8th grade, children begin to think more analytically; they understand the law of cause and effect, the internal leading to the external. This is where the capacity for abstract thought is growing and where the concept of critical and analytical thinking is developed.
The third stage, high school, is where the application of that analytical thinking, along with the foundations of learning previously established, results in the written and spoken expression of knowledge that is scholarly, eloquent, and powerful!
Within the classical education model is a systematic learning process designed to create consistency and clarity no matter what the subject. This process involves the restoration of the four R's to teaching and learning:
Research - Research is the exploration of a subject using various resources including the Bible, original documents, and well-written resources.
Reason - Reasoning according to a Biblical world view uses the fundamental principles of truth from the Word of God as the basis for measuring every fact or piece of information. The Bible, as the great sieve of all knowledge, becomes the acid test for truth, virtue, and effectiveness.
Relate - Relating is the process of applying what the student has researched to his or her every day life, empowering every child to make decisions that produce results that will honor God, family, and mankind.
Record - After having gone through the process of researching, reasoning, and relating, the student is now taught to record his or her conclusions on paper in an accurate, original, and intelligent manner.
We believe that this approach will build the foundations and skills for young, intelligent women and men of God to succeed in any future endeavor!