This year, for the first time since PCA’s founding, we hosted a Christmas Recitation instead of the normal Fall Recitation – and it was an incredible success! Students were eager to share what the Lord has taught them thus far. For those of you who may have missed the event, here is a recap:
The performances began with Lower Elementary students astounding us with their memorization of “Psalm 1” in song, Matthew 5:1-16, the “Wise Old Owl” poem, “God Made Me,” the books of the New Testament, and Catechism questions, among other things. One of the strengths of classical education is its catering the learning experience towards children’s natural capacities at each stage of development. Thus this kind of “grammatical” learning comes readily to them.
Next, the second and third graders gave an oral review of the Old Testament, followed by an essay reading by Laurel McLaughlin. The Upper Elementary students then performed a display of the Rock Cycle, complete with posters, acting, and good humor, followed by a recitation of Catechism questions. Music students came next, beautifully singing Christmas songs for the audience and reciting musical knowledge such as the names of composers as well as musical term definitions. The logic school, made up of our middle schoolers, then presented a piece titled “Global Warming,” which displayed their understanding of science, logic, and mathematics. For more Christmas cheer, the Upper Elementary students performed “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” Kristen Kamphausen then read her Andrew Jackson essay, a call for all of us to practice righteousness. As if all of this were not impressive enough, the Latin students then displayed their knowledge in a question and answer format, showing the audience that many English words and phrases have Latin roots. Middle schoolers then recited Augustine’s prayer from their Omnibus class – a mix of history and literature. Finally, the evening closed with a chorus of “In the Bleak Midwinter/Silent Night” medley and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” from the music students.
As our headmaster, Mr. Bailey, noted, what is impressive is that the recitation is only a sample of what the students at PCA have learned. It is clear these children have worked hard to learn a plethora of information. Without doubt, the teachers also work diligently to help their students learn in the best manner possible and are an asset to the school. At Pinnacle Classical Academy we have a motto: Excelsior ad Dei gloriam, or “Ever higher for the glory of God.” PCA’s Christmas Recitation this year was a shining display of this phrase in a practical, tangible way, as students and teachers alike strive to press onward and upward in all things to the glory of God.