Why I Chose Classical Education –
One Mother’s Story

Sarah Stensland is a mother to three children. She and her husband were born and raised in southern Minnesota, but six years ago moved to California for her husband’s work. This is her story of why she chose classical education.

When our oldest child was 3, I began looking for preschools, eventually reaching the conclusion that for a one-income family with a stay-at-home mom, preschool would be cost prohibitive. The preschool years of fun and activities passed quickly, and I began to ponder kindergarten and beyond.

The community where we lived offered many excellent academic options in public and private school settings, but I have a strong desire to be with family. Up until this point, we had become accustomed to the flexibility of visiting family in Minnesota several times a year. I was concerned about the kids missing school to continue these trips, but equally concerned about the kids missing precious time with their grandparents.

As I explored my options and considered homeschooling, I was hopeful that we wouldn’t always be so far away from family, which would make homeschooling likely a temporary endeavor. But I still wanted to do it “right” and make sure that if and when my kids started at another school they were “where they needed to be” and not academically behind their peers.

I spent hours and hours researching curriculum and creating a plan for how I would accomplish my mission. The education theory I kept coming back to was a Classical Education. I loved the fact that this was not a fad education, but rather something that has been used and proven effective for hundreds of years.

I also liked that the education focus changes with the growing child’s mind. In the elementary years when their brains are like sponges, they spend lots of time memorizing facts. In the middle school years when they start to challenge the ways of the world, they learn logic. And during high school as they prepare to go out into the world, they learn how to form and defend their own opinions.

The theory made perfect sense and became the backbone for our homeschooling. I homeschooled all three of our children – our son from kindergarten through second grade, our oldest daughter through kindergarten and our youngest daughter during preschool. We were then offered another move with my husband’s company, which meant we would be moving closer to family…yay! It also meant many other changes for our family as I would be returning to work and the kids would be “going” to school.

I began researching school options again and found a new private school, Genesis Classical Academy, had opened in the local community. Even better than its location, it was a Classical Christian school. I was so excited that my kids could continue with their classical education in a Christ-centered school.

We made the move, my husband started his new job, I started my job and my kids headed off to school at Genesis. They LOVED school, so much so, that when they were sick or had a snow day, they cried!

Genesis has been such a blessing to our family. I have seen my children grow physically, academically and spiritually. There are so many things I love about Genesis. The teachers and staff are amazing and so caring to the kids. The entire day is Christ- centered. The academics are top notch.

The kids are learning and are expected to behave with polite respectful attitudes, not only to the staff but to each other. In this past year I’ve seen my children truly thrive and have an abundant love of life and love of learning. Thank you, Genesis Classical Academy!