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Dialectic Stage Scope & Sequence
The central subject of the Dialectic stage is Logic. This subject will teach the tool of the dialectic stage. A few other subjects also teach logical thinking, most notably Geometry and translation exercises in Greek and Latin. Other subjects will teach logical thinking as the child is required to use logical thinking explaining his position on topics within those subjects. These other subjects can be added as the homeschool mom has the time, desire, and ability, or as is required by state homeschooling laws. These other critical subjects are: Writing, Literature, History, and Math; then Science, Art, and Music. Oratory, in the form of logical argumentation, can be included in the study of formal logic; Government can be included with History studies.
A word on trying to cram twelve subjects into the curriculum, five days a week, every year: Don’t. :-) One Logic course is sufficient: either Traditional Logic, The Mars Hill Logic, or an online Logic. The only Mathematics necessary is Elementary Algebra and Geometry, which can be sequenced this way: Elementary Algebra the first year of the dialectic, Logic the second year, and Geometry the third year. The History program can be worked Monday through Thursday, doing Government on Fridays. Art and Music lessons can take place on Fridays, leaving Monday through Thursday for work in Languages and Writing. Writing topics should be culled from Bible, History, and Literature reading, thereby combining work from two subjects into one time slot. Find ways to combine. We are homeschooling; we do not need to be limited to the mindset of institutionalized school.
The Scope and Sequence for the higher stages has basic work as well as extra work listed. I did this because in my own family, it was necessary for me to adjust my scope and sequence depending on which child was going through the dialectic stage at the time. One of my children couldn’t get enough history and literature; another begged for more Logic. The third devours everything I can find on science and math. I used the basic sequence as a base. Where my individual children showed greater interest, that is where I added to their curriculum using the extra work as a guide. If a child struggles with math, give them a year and half or two years to go through each math text instead of one year. What have our children learned if we rush them through their texts and books in order to stay caught up, if they didn’t absorb the material? And if a child zips through the suggested course of study, allow them to continue on to the next level of work. Nothing is likewise gained by keeping them back. (This is where the extra work can come in handy.) The most important thing to remember is: know the logical progression of each subject, and then proceed to the next level when the current one is mastered.
The combinations possible with using the basic sequence as a base and adding the extra options as desire allows are too numerous to list; I will leave that to you. Just remember that as long as the basic minimum requirement is met, your child is on track and learning the tool of the dialectic stage.
On the Use of Real Books in the secondary curriculum: getting the most out of assigned readings
Bible: read through the entire Bible in three years; study the truth of the Bible and Christian doctrine
Logic: learning traditional, formal Logic
Language: proficiency and reading ability in Latin and/or Greek
Writing: writing grammatically correct, clear, and smooth sentences (first year), paragraphs (second year), and essays (third year)
Literature: reading quality literature, beginning Great Books study Option 1: Reading the Great Books at an individual pace CCH’s Literature of Western Civilization Units with How to Read a Book by Mortimer Adler Option 2: first two years of a five-year Great Books course Great Books I-II Online Tutorial with Escondido Tutorial Service or Introduction and World/Romantic Classical Literature Courses with Smarr Publishers or Literature Critical Thinking Courses I-II with For Such a Time as This Ministries Option 3: Continue good books (first and second year), first year of a four-year Great Books course (third year) Dialectic Literature and Poetry selections from the 1000 Good Books list (first and second year) and First year of a four-year Great Books course (third year): Great Books I Online Tutorial with Schola Classical Tutorials
History: Overview of Western Civilization evaluating the key persons and events according to Biblical standards Option 1: CCH’s Western Civilization overview for the Dialectic stage The Ancient & Classical World (first year) The Medieval, Renaissance, & Reformed World (second year) The Modern World (third year) Highly recommended teacher’s resource for any of the listed options: All Through the Ages History through Literature Guide by Christine Miller
Government: understanding the scriptural basis and role of government on all levels: self, familial, church, and societal God and Government Volumes1-3 by Gary DeMar
Math: The logic of mathematics Option 1: Harold Jacobs Mathematics Elementary Algebra by Harold Jacobs Basic Geometry by Harold Jacobs Basic or Euclid’s Elements edited by Thomas Heath Basic Mathematics: A Human Endeavor by Harold Jacobs Extra Option 2: Escondido Tutorial Service Mathematics Saxon Algebra I Online Tutorial with Escondido Tutorial Service Basic Euclidean Geometry Online Tutorial with Escondido Tutorial Service Basic Saxon Algebra 2 Online Tutorial with Escondido Tutorial Service Extra Option 3: James Strain Tutorials in Mathematics
Science: practicing logic as applied to science: the creation/evolution debate Basic Creation ex nihilo magazine and Unlocking the Mysteries of Creation by Dennis Peterson Of Pandas and People by Percival Davis and Dean Kenyon Extra study in creation science & evolution (index) Traditional third year study: Earth Science Option 1: Exploring Creation with Physical Science by Jay Wile Option 2: Global Science by Qadosh Tutorial Service
Oratory: learning the principles of debate An Introduction to Argumentation & Debate by Christy Farris
Art: learning the relationships between the elements of art, color, and composition Basic: using a sequential art curriculum Option 1: Barry Stebbing’s art curricula for teens by Barry Stebbing Option 2: Artistic Pursuits Junior High Books 1 and 2 by Brenda Ellis Extra: Dialectic stage art history