Has Successfully Taught Their Young Children Latin Without Prevously Knowing it Themselves? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 08-15-2012, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
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I would like to start Latin for my 4.5 year old.  I took Latin in college (years ago) so I have a very, very, basic understanding of the language.  I'm hoping that by teaching her, I will learn as well.  Has anyone been successful in this or have any Latin curriculum recommendations? 

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#2 of 5 Old 08-15-2012, 03:20 PM
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TBH I don't think Latin is a good subject for a child that young, or at least not taught the way you'd need to if you don't "speak" it.


I have done quite a few years of Latin in my time but no way am I fluent, in the way  I would be if I'd done the equivalent time in a living language. Latin is not a speaking language, its more something you decipher-more akin to a computer program, if that makes any sense at all. My degree is in ancient languages, its just an entirely different skill set to learning a living language.


My son was keen to learn latin but we held off til he was that much older. Think he'd have been just 8. 


That said, I may end up starting my 7 year old on Latin this year, just because she is incredibly keen. If I did I'd use Minimus (think they have supplementary tapes if you are not confident about pronounciation) and just make it really fun and take it slow. but she is 7, and reading and pretty logical already. I cannot imagine doing this with my 4.5 year old. She does know a few latin phrases (from her brother) but I can't imagiane any way she would be ready for the kind of logic Latin demands.


When your child is older, I'd really recommend the cambridge Latin course, with the supplementary dvd or independent learners book. Again I think they have a prounication dvd if that is of concern to you.


good luck, don't want to be a downer but I think Latin is one of those subjects that just is too logical for a young child. What I'd do in the interim is introduce a few latin words (hello-salve and so on), maybe read the minimus books with her and talk abotu them, but more than anything, get her interested in rome, myths, etc. Assuming you are in the US? If you are not, if you are in Europe or North Africa or anywhere else the romans got to, take your child to see some archaelogy!


Oh ETA my recommendations are in part because we are UK based and both Minimus and the CLC do tie in well with Roman Britain. But I still think they are really good courses.

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#3 of 5 Old 08-15-2012, 06:39 PM
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Agree with Fillyjonk (and what a moomin-themed set of responses we've got going lol.gif; I expect the Hemulen will be along shortly with his opinion)!

I did Minimus, and then Cambridge, with my eldest dd. I learned a lot alongside her, spite having not studied that language systematically in the past. But there are plenty of living languages I'd rather achieve fluency in ... And that I'd rather my kids master. To me Latin is one of those languages from which it helps to accumulate some basic vocabulary, because of the roots of English and the Romance languages. And it's a neat way to systematically learn about grammar. But it is not a living language. Why would you want to teach a 4-year-old a dead language, or verb declensions?

My dd was 8 or 9 when she developed her interest in Latin. Minimus was a good place for her to start, and Cambridge was a good program to segué into after that, suited for upper middle school and high school students. personally I wouldn't start any younger than 9-ish.


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#4 of 5 Old 08-23-2012, 09:00 PM
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We started with Song School Latin.  My boys both loved it, and it was a gentle introduction to the language.  We waited until they were a bit older before starting Latin for Children A.  I wanted to wait until they had a better grasp of grammar before moving on.  Also the LfC A had a bit more writing than my oldest was ready for at the time.  I love that we can listen to the chants when we're on the go.  My youngest is just now starting it at 8 but already has a great foundation just from listening in on the chants.  We also have Lively Latin and the first Minimus for variety.  I've been looking into Lingua Latina to use when they're a bit older. 

I have not studied Latin before so I'm learning with my sons.  I love that LfC A came with DVDs and chant CDs.  So far, it hasn't been difficult.  We are loving it! 

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#5 of 5 Old 08-27-2012, 08:12 AM
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We do Song School Latin in K, and then go through Getting Started with Latin at a snail's pace.  There's no huge rush at this age, it's just exposure, for the most part, and some memorization to make life easier later.  IN 4th grade, we start The Bridge to the Latin Road, and then use The Latin Road to English Grammar from there.  That's my main reason for teaching Latin, anyway, to help understand grammar, so it works well for us. 


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