Saturday, July 23, 2005

The Value of a Holistic Education

This article in Christian History struck a chord with me, “Elementary School: Medieval to Modern.” It is a brief notation on the educational philosophy of Jan Amos Comenius (1592-1670).

One section reads:

But he believed that education, though not in itself redemptive, could complement the gospel by fostering international restoration, unity, and peace. People have long understood that one potential benefit of a liberal education is the tolerance and generosity of spirit it can instill in its students. Rising above Europe's fractiousness, Comenius taught a strongly Christ-centered version of this old ideal.

In working to establish Dayspring for Christian Studies, I have run across both a prejudice against the use of any kind of general education, as well as a great appreciation for a well-rounded worldview curriculum. Dayspring’s mission is to engage the University with a Christian worldview. In large part, we do that by providing general core classes to students taught by faithful and studious Christians. A lot of people haven’t understood why we don’t just offer a bunch of Bible classes.

Too many ministers and Christians believe that to be well trained as a Christian means to have four years of evangelism and missions classes. Now, don’t get me wrong: those educational systems serve their purposes and have their role, but it likely isn’t the role of producing people who are well equipped to faithfully live in and exegete well their culture.

I think Comenius had it right. A good grounding in a broad range of topics and studies better prepares Christians to engage our world.

3 comments:

Brian said...

Phil,

Keep up the good work on providing Christians with a well rounded education. I am finding many people know what to think but not how to think.

Your work in worldview education is preparing the soil for the harvest.

Regards,

Brian

Phil Steiger said...

Brian-Thanks for the thoughts. I enjoyed discovering your blog!

Brian said...

Thanks, Phil. I have a new blog here:

http://www.vosregnumdei.com