Foundations

Foundations is a grammar-stage program for children ages five to twelve and their parents. The Foundations Curriculum outlines a comprehensive core of grammar for history, science, English, Latin, geography, a timeline, and math. Students will encounter these facts again later in the subsequent programs. This curriculum clearly leads parents through a classical education at home, week by week. Our Foundations program meets once a week for a community day where memory work gets introduced, and hands-on science and fine art projects are done. Learning together allows for friendships to be formed with parents and kids for encouragement, growth and life-giving relationships.

Lead Your Child To A World Of Possibilities

How can I give my child a quality education with a firm foundation?

Parents receive the tools to establish a classical education at home giving your child a firm foundation and growing their love for learning. Children are taught the tools of learning in a manner which is suited for their age and educational developmental stage. Once this foundation is place they will be ready to move into the next phase of learning and step in the classical model.

The first step in learning anything is to learn its basic parts and vocabulary.

Community Day Schedule

9:00 Opening assembly: Open with prayer and a family presentation. Directors may also lead Scripture memory work recitation and make announcements.
9:30-12:00 Classes: Students learn new grammar in core subjects, review previously learned grammar, participate in hands-on fine arts and science projects, and practise presentation skills.
12:00 Lunch: Families eat, talk, and play together after the morning’s work.
1:00-3:00 Essentials Program: Students in the Essentials program study English grammar and writing and participate in fun maths games, like Number Knock-out.

Proven results from community engagement

Foundation Cycles

The material taught in Foundations is divided into three cycles: one cycle per year for three years. Each cycle consists of twenty-four weeks of memory work and activities. Students who begin Foundations in Reception will complete each cycle at least twice, developing greater understanding and mastery through repetition. However, students at any learning level will benefit from learning the memory work, even if they only complete one cycle.

Cycle 1

Covers ancient world history.

Cycle 2

Covers medieval to new-world history.

Cycle 3

Covers British history. All other subjects (geography, science, fine arts, etc.) correlate to these time periods.

Download Cycle

Cycles aren’t related to a particular year. All students cover the same grammar, older students are expected to cover the material in greater depth at home.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I have more than one child and they are in different age groups?

Parents go to class with a different child each week, or they go with the child who needs them the most.

How do I know what information the children will be learning in Foundations?

Parents buy the Foundations Guide, which lays out weekly memory work and activities. CDs and flashcards are also available to purchase if parents would like to use them at home. Only one guide is needed per family for all three cycles and any number of children.

What do I do at home?

At home, parents and students practice reciting the memory work that was introduced in the Foundations seminar. They use techniques demonstrated in class, sing along with the Memory Work CD, or use one of our online tutorials or iPad/iPhone apps.

Is this a complete curriculum?

The Foundations program provides all the science, geography, Latin, history, and English grammar necessary for this age group. Parents choose their own phonics and reading curriculum and their own maths curriculum to use at home, as these subjects are best taught one-on-one. Parents and students also read more about the science and history topics at home together.

What day of the week do Foundations programs meet?

Foundations programs can meet any day of the week.

What if there is not a Foundations community in my area?

New programs are formed every year. Contact the support manager nearest you to find out more about how to start a program.

How is Foundations classical?

In a classical education, students first memorise the vocabulary of a subject. The Foundations program teaches students how to memorise anything, giving them the tools necessary for future learning. The material selected for memory practice is from the Challenge program, so that students go into a formal study of a subject already knowing the basic grammar for that subject. For example, when Challenge students begin to read their physical science textbooks or to study history, they understand the material easily because they have already memorised many of the important terms, names, and dates.

Do I have to start at Cycle 1?

No, students can start Foundations at any cycle. All Classical Conversations communities offer the same cycle on the same year.

Do we complete a cycle more than once?

Yes, students who begin Foundations around age six will get to do each cycle twice. This ensures that the memory work is firmly planted in their long-term memory. The second time through a cycle allows students to learn about each topic in more depth at home and to read more advanced books on the topics they’re studying.

Can children with special needs attend Foundations?

Some families find that Foundations is a good match for children with special needs because the parent can be with them and assist them as needed. If your child has special needs, talk to your support manager, director, or tutor and visit a Foundations program to see if you think it would be a good fit for your child.