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On Homework

Ave Maria Academy on Homework

Four principles primarily inform Ave Maria Academy’s policy on homework.
1) Parents are the first and primary educators of their children.
2) Ave Maria Academy educates for the cultivation of virtue, wisdom, and holiness.
3) Leisure is the basis of culture.
4) Education includes the handing on of a culture.
The most important education of a child begins when he leaves school and returns to the family. Parents are the first and primary educators of their children. The Catholic Church expresses this truth not as an imperative to homeschool but as a matter of fact. Whether parents choose to homeschool or to entrust their children to a school like Ave Maria Academy, parents remain the primary influence on a child’s formation. Ave Maria Academy acknowledges the primacy of parents in education and seeks to contribute to a family life that best accommodates the home as a school of faith and as a domestic church.
Leisure is the basis of culture. Ave Maria Academy encourages leisure in the home for the cultivation of a Christian culture and a good family life. Too many families because of the demands of homework and extracurricular activities do not have time for family dinners, dedicated times for prayer, and regular conversation. These days, the ordinary activities of family life have become extraordinary, but it need not be the case. The cultivation of a Christian culture and the handing on of that culture to the next generation requires the normal activities of a family in its traditions and daily life. In truth, that kind of family life is pivotal to the formation of children in virtue, wisdom, and holiness.
Thus, compared to other schools, Ave Maria Academy will appear to assign little homework. The intention is not to minimize the role of parents in their children’s education, quite the opposite. Ave Maria Academy prioritizes the parents’ role but it’s a role in a certain kind of education that’s appropriate for the home. If Ave Maria Academy educates well on campus, children will come home to share the great discoveries and wonders of the day. Therein lies the parents’ opportunity to engage in the homework with questions and guidance. The conversations around the dinner table about school provide practice in the arts of thinking and speaking well. Students will also come home with prayers and poetry that parents can help their children memorize, especially if the family incorporates the prayers into the family’s daily prayers and offer opportunities for recitations amidst family life. Here in lies the many opportunities for parents to model and cultivate a love for learning. These virtues Ave Maria Academy seeks to inculcate, and Ave Maria Academy knows that families play the most critical role in that kind of education.

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Ave Maria Academy is a K-9 school for boys and girls, with a traditional 5-day schedule and 2 or 3 day hybrid home-school student option. We offer a Classical education in the Catholic tradition, dedicated to handing on the fullness of the Faith to cultivate virtue, the imagination, and the intellect. Ave Maria Academy is a NAPCIS Member School. NAPCIS member schools have achieved and maintain a full commitment to Catholic doctrinal orthodoxy and very high professional and academic standards (see the full standards of excellence).

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