At Saint Anthonys, we combine the educational philosophies of John Senior and Maria Montessori with the Byzantine Catholic Tradition.
This means observing the proper order of knowledge, which begins with the poetic - as outlined by John Senior who tells us that “in the poetic mode, one experiences things rather than examining them in any critical spirit.” This is the time to learn through “experience of two kinds, direct and imaginatively participatory” (James S. Taylor).
Maria Montessori recommends, along with intellectual development, that the education of adolescents focus on nurture during this difficult time of physical transition, strengthening of self-confidence, building community, and doing real work with their hands.
In the ancient, rich Byzantine Catholic tradition, the whole person, body and soul are taken into account; the Divine Liturgy and the Liturgy of the Hours provide a visceral experience of the life of the Church and the love of Christ. The Eastern Church's primary emphasis on beauty, mystery, and experience beautifully complements the education we offer at St. Anthonys'. St. John Chrysostom believed that parents' first responsibility was to educate their children in Christian virtue. He says, "The best context for this Christian education is the pedagogy of the monastics, but since that is not always possible, the parents must make sure that the children have as monastic and spiritual an education as possible." Our days are structured around the Liturgy of the Hours, the feasts & fasts of the Church, working in the earth, learning crafts, & contemplating the Great texts, providing the most monastic education possible outside of a monastery.
We see that adolescence is not the time for specializing or analyzing but for connecting to particular & concrete instances of beauty in nature and the liberal arts and for learning through experiences both imaginative and participatory. We aim to help our students recapture their innate sense of wonder and realize their dignity and sense of purpose without disregarding the psychological and physical development unique to adolescence. We seek to engage our students' minds with the great books and their bodies with hands-on experiences, projects, & activities through interdisciplinary modules.