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Classical Education

Latin Preparation for Teachers and Parents

Are you a parent/teacher who would wishes you had an opportunity to learn Latin?  Are you a Latin teacher that wishes you had time to go back and take some graduate courses?  Well, your wish has been granted.  Several university classics programs offer summer courses.  Here are a couple of excellent programs I have been made aware of recently.  Check your area college or university to see what they might be offering.  Some programs allow adults to audit a course for only a small fee without actually enrolling in the college.  If you find a good program, post a comment and let us know!

 University of Texas at Austin

Please note the following classics courses to be offered this summer at the University of Texas at Austin, which may interest you and/or your students. 
For more information contact Lynn Gadd ( 512-471-8502). 
Intensive Summer Greek
June 3-August 16
First Session: June 3-July 10
LAT 506: Beginning Latin I
LAT 311: Intermediate Latin I (Vergil)
LAT 323: Catullus.
Second Session: July 12-August 16
LAT 507: Beginning Latin I
LAT 312M: Intermediate Latin II: Readings in Latin Prose
Classical Civilization
First Session: June 3-July 10
CC 301: Introduction to Ancient Greece
CC 304C: Introduction to Ancient Egypt
CC 306M: Introduction to Medical and Scientific Terminology
Second Session: July 12-August 16
CC 302: Introduction to Ancient Rome
CC 303: Introduction to Classical Mythology

Each year the Institute offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate Latin and Classics courses, including, in odd-numbered years, Intensive Beginning Greek and, in even-numbered years, Intensive Beginning Latin. The Institute curriculum is supplemented by workshops and guest lectures by visiting master teachers and other scholars. The program is designed especially for Latin teachers who wish to continue their education or earn a Master’s degree in Latin on a summers-only basis. The faculty
of the Department of Classics share in a tradition of cooperation with high school teachers and their programs that culminates each summer in an exciting and challenging curriculum. Here are the offerings for the summer of 2010:

First Short Session – June 14 – July 2, exam on July 6
LATN 2050 – Intensive Latin, I 12:30 – 3:15 pm, Park Hall 225, Dr. Christine Albright
CLAS 8020 – Archaeology of Carthage, 9:00 – 11:45 am, Park Hall 228, Dr. Naomi J. Norman

Second Short Session – July 7 – July 27, exam on July 28
LATN 2060 – Intensive Latin II, 12:30 – 3:15 pm, Park Hall 225, Mr. Randy Fields
LATN 4/6020 – Roman Epic(non-Aeneid selections), 9:00 – 11:45 am, Park Hall 228, Dr. T. Keith Dix

Through Session – June 14 – July 26, exam on July 27
CLAS 8000 – Proseminar, 2:14 – 4:05 pm • Mondays Only, Park Hall 222, Staff
LATN 6030 – Caesar, 12:45 – 2:00 pm, Park Hall 115, Dr. John Nicholson

Classical Connections on Facebook

All you facebook junkies can now get the latest inside scoop on some of your favorite classical organizations via facebook. A number of groups are surfing the net and riding the facebook wave. Here are a few Read the rest of this entry »

ACCS National Conference

Registration is now open for the annual conference of the Association of Classical and Christian Schools (ACCS).  Each year this conference offers parents, teachers, and administrators a wonderful opportunity to attend workshops and exchange ideas in a very wide range of subject matter.  I always leave feeling inspired and ready to take on another year.  This year’s conference will be held in Durham, NC and features special guest speaker, Os Guinness.  You may visit the ACCS Conference website by clicking on the image below.

ACCS 2010 National Conference

ACCS 2010 National Conference

Milton, “On Education”

 I recently attended a conference at Providence Classical Academy in Spring, TX.   The plenary speaker, Grant Horner of Masters College, spoke on the works of John Milton.  I was reminded about Milton’s treatise “On Education.”  Upon my return home I eagerly re-read the treatise.  I would encourage you all to do the same.  For myself, one who spends  her time in classical language and literature, one segment stood out,

“Language is but the Instrument conveying to us things usefull to be known . . .  if he [the student] have not studied the solid things in them as well as the Words & Lexicons, he were nothing so much to be esteem’d a learned man, as any Yeoman or Tradesman competently wise in his Mother Dialect only.”

Milton goes on to prescribe a reading list of Latin Literature, literature important for those in agriculture, trade, building, and any other profession.  Thus learning Latin, according to Milton, is a means to an end.  The end is not knowing a list of vocabulary and paradigms; that is the means.  The end is the ability to read Latin Literature in the orignal language as written by the authors.  The ability to accomplish this opens to the student a treasure trove of ancient thought, wisdom, and insight.  To read these same works in English is only to dig through the top soil.  Often the most precious gems and metals are buried deeper within the language.

My exhortation to all Latin teachers then is to read, read, read.  Read early and read often.  If your students are too young to take on ancient texts or adapted versions then begin with Latin readers for beginning students.  The Libellus de Historia series, published by Classical Academic Press, may be used as early as third grade.  Civis Romanus is another classic reader, published by Bolchazy-Carducci.  Some texts for older students like Latin Alive, Wheelock’s, and Introduction to Latin will incorporate adapted and original passage from Latin authors into each chapter.  At Grace Academy of Georgetown our Latin program requires a capstone class called Latin Literature in which students spend the year reading a literature selection such as Milton has suggested.

While the rote memorization of vocabulary and grammar rules certainly does help improve our English, it is the reading of Latin literature that cultivates our mind, creating fertile soil from which beautiful works may grow.

Dramatic Performance: The Death of Euryalus

In this clip you will see one of our 10th grade students performing a scene from Vergil's Aeneid, "The Death of Euryalus."  Josh won first place at both the Area and Texas State Junior Classical League Conventions for this performance.  He also won 2nd place at the National JCL Convention in California in July, 2009.  You may note that Josh recites the poem in dactylic hexameter as he portrays the suspense and passion of the death scene.  An excellent performance!

The art of oratory and dramatic performance is key for students in classical education.  This project has become my favorite and one that the students look forward to each year as well.  You can find oratory and dramatic interpretation passages for students of all levels at the website for the National Junior Classical League (  Look under "creative arts."

Seminar and Book Review

“Karen puts the “classy” in classical Latin education.  Both in print and in person she brings academic rigor, vision, and charm to the subject.  She infuses the Conference with well-organized information and enthusiasm making it an exponentially better experience than trying to review it all by myself.  So glad I attended and so glad that God has led her to create the interdisciplinary (grammar, history, literature) series that Latin Alive is.”

-Rhonda from Christ Classical Academy in Tallahasee, Fl.

One of the many reviews you can read on the Latin For Teachers website (link in the blogroll).  Karen will not be leading the LFT seminar in Austin in 2010, as she is taking some time off to finish the Latin Alive book series.  Her grammar school seminar is available on DVD from Classical Academic Press.  Karen is available for training and consultation.

Pursuing Wisdom Colloquy

It’s the middle of the year. A long road still lies ahead. Are you looking for some fresh ideas or do you need a chance to reboot? Are you seeking to learn more about classical education? The Pursuing Wisdom Colloquy will provide all of the above. On February 5 – 6 Providence Classical School hosts their annual Colloquy, an ACCS* regional training conference, featuring plenary speaker Grant Horner. Whether you are teaching in a formal school, in a home school, or you are a parent seeking to learn more about classical education, this conference will refill your sails. A short weekend packed with workshops for teachers, parents, and administrators, there is sure to be something for everyone. Providence Classical is located in beautiful Spring, TX. Please visit the Providence Classical School website.

For other regional ACCS* conferences in your area, please visit the ACCS website.

*ACCS – Association of Classical Christian Schools

Precision of Thought

“The practice of translation, by making us deliberate in the choice of the best equivalent of a foreign word in our own language, has likewise the advantage of continually schooling us in one of the main elements of a good style, — precision; and precison of thought is not only exemplified by precision of language, but is largely dependent on the habit of it.”

James Russell Lowell, Address on Books and Libraries

Lesson XXII, An Introduction to Greek. Crosby and Schaeffer

Geneva School

Today I had the privilege of spending time on the campus of Geneva School in Boerne, Texas.  I was very impressed with the faculty, the staff and the students.  If you are in the San Antonio area I would commend this school to you.  If you are anywhere in Texas, you should come take a look.  Here is a great classical model.

Latin: The Foundation for Science

“In my opinion,” said Dr. Zappfe, “Latin and Greek are the most valuable subjects in the college curriculum.  This association is opposed to too much science, and it definitely favors and recommends a cultural education, with Classics as a basis.  Personally, I would unhesitatingly accept as a medical student one who is long on the classics, especially Greek, and short on science.  Physicians should be educated, not trained.” 

Dr. Fred Zappfe, former Secretary of the Association of American Medical Colleges (1940)

Quote taken from Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning, by Douglas Wilson