Last month, I wrote an article called, “How to Raise a Discoverer.” This month, I want to expand on that idea. Toward the end of the first article, I argued that Dorothy Sayers, Leigh Bortins, and Classical Conversations have equipped parents with the necessary tools that will help them to educate children in accordance with their nature, thereby encouraging them in their natural desire to learn and potentially leading to a new generation of discoverers.
The first tool parents are equipped with in educating their children is the art of grammar. This art is most enjoyed by our children when they are of elementary age. They enjoy the predictably (and, therefore, the order and harmony) that comes from repeated chanting and singing of facts. The art of grammar gives them the opportunity to memorize vast amounts of information related to a subject or a series of subjects without regard for their relationships. They are collecting facts at a time when they are only interested in collecting facts. Children at this age are not as interested in seeing the relationships that develop between these facts as, say, we are. This allows them to focus on the accumulation of facts without being slowed down like we are. As a result, they can memorize far more efficiently than we can. The need to see these relationships will come when their desire to see them comes as well. This tool by itself does not a discoverer make, but it does make someone who will be very good at Jeopardy.