Middle School Curriculum

As traditional education involves the “three Rs” (reading, writing, and ’rithmetic), the middle school program
at Spring Branch Academy seeks to instill these three basic skills into seventh- and eighth-grade students as
preparation for their high-school studies in theology, humanities, the language arts, and the mathematical sciences.


Christianity is essential for classical education. While patterns in language and mathematics have been ascertained through the development of the liberal arts (both the trivium and the quadrivium, respectively), the patterns in history have remained a mystery to the classical and modern minds. Such patterns can only be known through revelation from God. The Bible reveals such patterns (in Greek, types) through its unparalleled prophecies and insights into the thoughts and ways of God. Therefore, wisdom truly does come “out of his mouth” (Proverbs 2:6).

In the Bible class, students read the entire Bible in two years. Instruction is given through the framework of eight principles of interpretation. Intriguing explorations in both interpretation and application are set up on Monday, shaped on Wednesday (through the writing class), and resolved on Friday, to the degree that God blesses. In addition, students also sing hymns and memorize both a catechism and lengthy passages of Scripture.


In preparation for high-school humanities, middle-school students receive training in both reasoning and writing. Training in reasoning involves a year in formal logic and a year in informal fallacies. Training in writing involves six of the ten forms in the classical progymnasmata, a traditional course in learning rhetoric through imitation. Content for the writing assignments comes from the Bible class; and comparison with biblical forms is encouraged. Students may enter this two-year class in either year, because both years stand alone and complement each other.

Grammar Bootcamp

To enter the writing class, students must pass a proficiency exam in English grammar. Students in need of additional help receive a year of grammar before enrolling in the writing class (assuming the exam is passed).

Nature as Numbers

As a wise Creator, God built the world with orderly patterns that can be represented with mathematical models. This class trains students to see these patterns in nature. As a result, students learn to express scientific puzzles in mathematical language, which complements the artificial way that math classes try to teach such skills through “word problems.” In this way, students learn the mathematical language of nature through a “lab” approach.


Just as language is built on words and sentences, so arithmetic is built on numbers and computation. Therefore, both number theory and computational skills are necessary for “translating” patterns of nature into symbolic form. As an abstract subject, mathematics requires a student to grasp the various meanings of mathematical operations and put such abstract thinking into practice through real-life puzzles. In this curriculum, “word problems” cease to be silly add-ons, but instead form the heart of arithmetic and the foundation for high-school mathematics and science. In time, it is hoped that “Nature as Numbers” will be more fully integrated with “Arithmetic.”