Friday, February 1, 2013

Singing along to Song School Latin

Willow's been studying Latin for a while now. We started off with Minimus, which Willow LOVES, but after the first couple of chapters it quickly grew too difficult, requiring far too much contextual knowledge and inferences to understand the Latin for even my highly literate seven-year-old. I then created a Latin study just for Willow, and while that was perfectly at her level, and she liked it, it was a lot of work to put together every week. Mind you, I do love creating my own curricula, but I've discovered that creating my own curriculum for EVERY subject is too much work for me!

I'd previously dismissed Song School Latin as too young for Willow, but when Sydney said that she, too, wanted to learn Latin, I checked it out again from the public library and decided that it actually would probably do just fine for the both of them. Yes, it is a little young, and no, it's not a companion to a formal grammar study, but it is an excellent introduction to the language, and a huge self-confidence builder for a future formal study.

So setting aside conjugations and declensions for a while, Willow and Sydney are both deep into the playful songs, conversational vocabulary, and tiny bit of cognate recognition of Song School Latin:

We cover one chapter a week (with a week every now and then devoted to review), with the girls adding that chapter's vocabulary to the memory work that they practice daily. Sometimes we simply drill the vocabulary, sometimes they choose to sing along with the chapter's songs for their vocabulary drill, and sometimes they just like to color in the current chapter's coloring pages while listening to songs from the entire CD.

And while they've been doing that, I've been scouring the Latin textbooks on Google Books. Because even though there isn't a wide variety of children's Latin textbooks NOW, well, children used to ALL study Latin, and there used to be lots of textbooks to teach them! And if there's one thing that I can tell you for sure, it is that the Latin language has not evolved between 1877 and now.

So although I'll probably move Sydney to a similar study of another language after we finish Song School Latin, I'm hoping that I can find an old-timey textbook with which to create a non-Momma-made formal Latin study for Willow to continue with afterwards.

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