Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Fun with Latin

I belong to homeschool co-op with four other families in which I teach Latin to the older students. One fun project we did toward the end of the year was make a Latin calendar. I used the calendar templates from A Year With God: Volume One (Catholic Heritage Curricula) and blanked out the names of the months, and the days of the week. I printed these sheets out on cardstock and the students filled in the Latin names of the month and days of the week. They used Roman Numerals to fill in the dates. The fun (and tricky) part was when we started adding birthdays, feast days and holidays in Latin. The students enjoyed coloring in the beautiful decorations from the templates and making nice covers. You can have the calendars spiral bound at your local copy shop. (Alicia from WI)


One assignment that proved to be challenging and interesting, particularly when we came across a chapter that didn't have a lot of translation, was to have the students write up sentences (English or Latin) for their fellow students to translate. This really made them think, review their vocabulary words carefully. The final results were usually both educational and entertaining as silly sentences were encouraged and the students were very attentive to their own (and their fellow students') mistakes. This would also work in families for older (or more advanced) students to write up sentences for their younger siblings. (Alicia from WI)


We use Latin for Beginners by Angela Wilkes in 5th grade as our formal introduction to the language (after spending 2 yrs with "English from the Roots Up"). LfB is published by the Usborne folks -- lots of pictures, lots of captions, with a total Latin vocabulary of about 350 words and a brief look at the first few declensions and conjugations at the end.

The vocabulary is everyday sort of stuff -- family members, days of the week, counting and colors, giving directions and placing an order for dinner. So part of how we use the book is to label rooms of the house, furniture, pictures of foods and pets, and so forth, to give the students a hands-on and visual approach to the language. Other lessons include scheduling their day in Latin, labeling the family pictures with name, age, and relationship to the student, and so forth. Three of our children have used this book so far, and they thoroughly enjoy doing their lessons on post-it notes and putting them up around the house! (Sue R.)


Latin Treasure Hunt: Keep an eye and ear out for Latin words or phrases that are used regularly in 21st century America! For the co-op high school Latin class that I teach, I gave them a list of Latin words and phrases (like emeritus and bona fide) to keep track of over the summer. (You can find an extensive list with meanings and pronunciations in Amo, Amas, Amat and more by Eugene Ehrlich). I will be awarding a prize to the student who records the most entries (you have to very specific about the rules though!). I think this is an excellent way to make Latin more relevant to students. (Alicia from WI)

No comments: