Live Oak offers a Christian classical education beginning in the Grammar years (Junior Kindergarten to grade 6), proceeding through the Logic years (grades 7th-9th), and concluding in the Rhetoric years (grades 10th-12th). In the fall of 2004, a Grammar School for Kindergarten through 5th grade was opened. In 2009-10, we began to offer Junior Kindergarten – Rhetoric I (10th grade students). Our first graduating class of Rhetoric III (12th grade) graduated in the year of 2011-2012. Our school is one of the largest private schools in Waco and one of few to offer a full 14-year program. Class sizes will remain small to foster individualized instruction and to enhance learning opportunities.
Our academic program challenges students by:
- exploration of rich texts
- chronological approach to history
- discovery of nature and its laws through hands-on experiments
- progression in the “why” of mathematics
- experiences in the fine arts
- translation of Latin, verbalization of Spanish
- the mystery of God shown in the Bible
- programs of competitive athletics
- asking layers of questions
- formulation of organized essays and sound arguments
The core curriculum in Junior Kindergarten (JK) through Grammar 6 includes history, literature, grammar, reading, writing, spelling, Bible, math, and handwriting. The special classes include studies in science, Spanish or Latin, art/art history, music/music history, geography, and physical education. Chapel is held weekly on Tuesday. JK-Grammar 1 have a geographical emphasis moving from JK (habitats, continents and oceans) to Kindergarten (countries of the world) to Grammar 1 (how we became America — with a geographical emphasis — and learning the states). Grammar 2 begins the historical cycle with Ancients through Grammar 6 in the Modern era. During the Grammar 2-Grammar 6 years students also cycle through the narrative of the Bible in canonical order — three years in the Old Testament and two years in the New Testament. Science progresses from studies of animals, plants, and the life cycle (early biology) to earth science, physics, chemistry, and life science. Our advanced math curriculum based on the Singapore approach takes our Grammar 6 students into visually being able to solve algebra problems.
Logic students have math, science, literature and composition, Latin and history (the historical cycle starts again) everyday. Old or New Testament Studies and formal Logic classes are offered on a semester basis. Fine arts, athletics and study hall share integrated hours that allow for student interest to create the most effective schedule. Athletics is held before school and into first period for Logic I and II, while Logic III students take part in athletics after school, as a part of the high school teams associated with Rhetoric school.
Rhetoric students are ready for the best part of a classical education. These blue-coated students continue with daily math (finishing with Calculus I, II or Statistics according to aptitude) and science (concluding with AP Chemistry, AP Biology or Environmental Science). While Rhetoric I has separate daily history and literature and composition classes, Rhetoric II and Rhetoric III students have capstone courses that integrate primary texts and literature from the covered historical time period in a discussion format that is fostered by our large oval Harkness tables. Philosophy/Theological Studies, Civics/Economics and Rhetoric classes are utilized to prepare Rhetoric III students for a final thesis which is required for graduation.
The student body of Live Oak will be chosen through a formal application process. Online applications are available to all prospective students. An interview and family dialogue with each prospective student will follow to ensure the compatibility of the school’s educational philosophy for each child. Students of average to above average academic success are usually best suited to match the school’s pace. Live Oak encourages cultural and ethnic diversity. Live Oak will admit students of any race, national, or ethnic origin and will not discriminate in the administration of its educational policies or school administered programs.