At Holy Trinity Classical Christian School, we equip our students to think critically, reason clearly, and communicate effectively by mastering the tools of grammar, logic, and rhetoric.
A classical education in the rhetoric stage teaches students to think and articulate concepts to others. Each subject has its own rhetoric; writing papers, researching, and orating are skills required in all subjects.
Here is a wonderful example of an essay by Senior Luke Greene that illustrates the effectiveness of learning composition through The Lost Tools of Writing curriculum.
A staple of the Holy Trinity brand of classical education is The Lost Tools of Writing curriculum. The Lost Tools of Writing is, at its base level, a composition curriculum. This being said, The Lost Tools of Writing is far superior to your ordinary composition course.
One thing that sets The Lost Tools apart from many writing courses is its depth. In The Lost Tools students are shown the big picture. One of the ways that this is accomplished is by teaching the three main components of any and all writing: the things written about, the organization of those things, and how they are presented. These components are crucial to learning to be a good writer. For an essay to be persuasive, it needs to have all three of these components in substantial quantity. For this reason, The Lost Tools program heavily focuses on the mastery of these three basic components. To become a good writer one must have things to write about. This sounds like an easy enough box to check, but when you find yourself staring at your computer screen, unsure of what to type, you realize that it truly is not. The Lost Tools program is not short on methods that students can use to remedy this. Students are taught to employ a plethora of processes to generate material. It is rare for a student of The Lost Tools to be truly at a loss for words.
Despite this, material alone is not enough to formulate a good essay. The material must be properly organized. In The Lost Tools, heavy emphasis is placed on the importance of the arrangement of the essay. The least persuasive type of essay is the type that makes little sense. Coherence is key. Think of an essay as a road; just as this road takes a traveler to his destination, so an essay must lead the reader to the logical conclusion the writer is trying to convey. To ensure a coherent and well structured essay, The Lost Tools of Writing course continually reinforces the importance of organization. As a testament to this, I can say that I or any one of my classmates could easily produce an outline for an essay in seconds.
The third component of good writing is presentation. Even though material and organization can form a logical argument, it won’t necessarily persuade. The writing must be so stylistic as to convince the reader of what you have to say. The Lost Tools course fully enables the student by teaching endless devices for polishing one’s presentation.
Though more can be said for The Lost Tool’s role in informing good writing both stylistically and structurally, there is a much larger influence on writing at Holy Trinity. This is none other than reading. At Holy Trinity we are constantly reading the great writers of the past, and what better way is there to learn than by imitating those more skilled than yourself?