First Baptist Academy partners with parents and the church to provide quality Christian education from a Biblical worldview. The First Baptist Academy incorporates a centuries-proven approach to learning commonly called Classical. This approach not only teaches the particular subjects, but enables each student to express what has been taught. Classical education recognizes that since Jesus Christ is not separate from any area of life, all coursework is centered on Christ. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, so at the heart of Christian philosophy of education is the acknowledgement that God created all things, and that they exist by His Power and for His pleasure. Furthermore, we exist to see each student become a wholly-surrendered disciple, who allows Christ to live through them.
All curriculum used at First Baptist Academy will be Christian in orientation or taught in harmony with Christian values and beliefs and compatible with a classical approach to education.
The elementary years at FBA are spent absorbing facts, systematically laying the foundations for advanced study. These years are called the grammar stage – not because we spend them focusing on English grammar, but because they are the years in which the building blocks for all other learning are laid! In the elementary years, the mind is capable of absorbing large amounts of information. Children at this age actually find memorization fun! We focus on rote memory & repetition as methods of learning. During this stage, education also involves the learning of facts. The fundamentals of phonics, rules of grammar, Latin & Spanish vocabulary, descriptions of plants, animals, and the human body, the mechanics of mathematics, important historical events, Bible history – the list goes on! All of the information gained during the grammar stage – elementary years – comprises the basic building blocks for the second stage of education: the logic stage.
In the FBA Middle School, students learn to think more analytically. Our students are less focused on finding out facts than on asking “Why?” In this part, the logic stage, the student begins to pay attention to cause and effect, to the relationships between different fields of knowledge, and to the way facts fit together in a logical way. During these years, the students begin algebra and the study of logic, and begin to apply logic & reason to all academic subjects. The logic of writing, for example, includes paragraph construction and learning to support a thesis; the logic of reading involves the criticism and analysis of texts, not simple absorption of information; the logic of history demands that the students find out why the War of 1812 was fought, rather than simply reading its story; the logic of science requires that the student learn the scientific method; the logic of Latin expands on the vocabulary and basic grammar concepts learned in the grammar stage and applies those things to diagramming and translating. These years transition our students to the final stage of the education process, the rhetoric stage.
In the Upper School, the final part of a classical education, the rhetoric stage, builds on the first two. The student of rhetoric applies the rule of logic learned in middle school to the foundational information learned in the elementary grades and expresses conclusions in clear, forceful, elegant language. Students also have the opportunity to focus on specific branches of FBA student life & extra curricular activities that appeal them; these are the years for art camps, college courses, foreign travel, apprenticeships, and other forms of specialized training. The Upper School at FBA desires to develop and equip leaders. Students learn to take information that they’ve learned and communicate it; both orally & written. They should be able to convey what they believe & why they believe it. We also provide classes in which students are trained as leaders in the FBA community. One example is our Worship Arts class, in which students plan and implement weekly chapel services. We want to see our students go on to be godly, productive leaders in their families, churches, communities, and careers.