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Ester Maria

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  1. We miss you! Hoping all is well with you.

    1. Harriet Vane

      Harriet Vane

      Indeed. I found your posts fascinating. Hope all is well.


  2. Miss your "voice" on the board:(

    Hope all is well with you and your family.

  3. I hope this board break isn't permanent. :(

  4. Best of luck to you, Mr. Kern. Specifics and definitions aside, we probably have more in common than it seems, in terms of appreciation of this heritage and a pursuit to relate to it somehow, and generally better ourselves and learn. I highly respect that and I love when I see it. (I would not like to give you an impression, though, that it was more impressive than it actually was. In hindsight, I found deficiencies and had to self-educate to remember and further my knowledge too. Still, I opted to save what I acquired and share with my children. :)) I think this is the point at which same texts can be used by different people for different things. :tongue_smilie:
  5. It depends on what you consider historical fiction, LOL. Regarding more classical literature which can pass as historical fiction: M. Yourcenar's Hadrian's memoirs. This is probably the only "historical fiction" I have specifically assigned so far to match with history, and depending on the DC's maturity, you can read it as early as middle school, even though it is technically an adult level work. This is a historical fiction of the "fake autobiography" kind. HIGHLY recommended. U. Eco's The Name of the Rose could probably fall into this category too - although it is postmodern / mixed genre, with the detective structure as its primary mechanism. A high school / adult level thing, although some younger students might be able to appreciate it. Manzoni's The Bethroted and Tolstoy's War and Peace are more classical examples - both of them are set in historical epochs preceding by large the epochs in which they were written; Tolstoy's is centered around Napoleon, specifically, Manzoni is in 17th century northern Italy (Milan plague, Spanish rule, etc.). Manzoni can (and is) read by older middle years students, Tolstoy is typically a bite too large for them to successfully chew until mid high school and later.
  6. They have a point: that situation is a clear case of double dipping. Conversational classes usually follow a grammar study, do not precede it. When you take a conversational language class, it often means you already know the language well enough to actually communicate, for a conversational class to make sense. If it were up to me, I would not allow you to count that twice either. Now, to your actual question: I would consider it a separate literature course, a 1.0 credit worth, which you can as well group with other literature courses, IF, like Lori said, you actually do all of it with supplementary readings. If not, I think it is WAY more along the lines of a 0.5 course elective, which FWIW you can as well call a simple LOTR study. I am basing these estimates on my daughter's work this year.
  7. Correct it every time when you hear it misused at home, just like you would do with any other language inaccuracy that is particularly irritating to you. :D
  8. It is not only about how many people you have reached, obviously there was no unanimous acceptance... But okay, different strokes for different folks. If it spoke to many and they are happy with it, awesome. Same thing which can be said in this our context, LOL. Whatever. The whole thing is beginning to drain me, and I am becoming uncomfortable with discussing a specific person to these lengths, although most of the discussion has been more general than that. To sum it up, I recognize that everyone has a full right to express whatever views and values they hold, regardless of their credentials or a personal level of scholarship - but I also think that other people have a right to determine the validity or applicability of such views for themselves, and if they find it important, to determine it also, amongst other things, on such factors. I think it is awesome if Mr. Kern "clicks" with his intended audience and of course, people find helpful ideas all over, so his institute can for many be just another source of helpful ideas. In that light, all is good, obviously everything will speak to some people and not to others. Most of my criticism was exclusively in light of the fact that he advocates certain things professionally (I cannot emphasize this enough. I think there is a huge difference between being a scenario of being just another anonymous on the internet and a scenario of founding an institute for something / holding public lectures on it / overall working publicly on something.) without what I personally perceive, within my value system, as minimal requirements to do so. But then again, I part with the majority view often regarding what are minimal requirements to do something, so you may consider all of this as my own idiosyncrasy. Apologies to Mr. Kern if he reads this and if he felt that my discussion of him specifically - in the context of more broad generalties - has gone too far, to a point he would consider rude and overly insistent, rather than "just" a disagreement. So, I am bowing out of discussing any specific people from this point on because I am uncomfortable with it.
  9. This is exactly my problem. They are not "useful as a tool" - they are PREREQUISITES for a SERIOUS study of texts in those languages. I was under the impression that your view was MORE along the "useful a tool" lines, which *I* disagree with, because I view them as essentials. I do not think Mr. Kern has to have been educated, as a child, in a particular educational model. People do not choose who they are going to be born and what kind of education will be thrown at them in their cultures and by their families. I do think, however, that anyone who professionally advocates for something has to have acquired, even as an adult, what they talk about. I am also not sure what to think of the idea that he did not have a chance to better his own competences in the era of such technology that these things are literally a click away. :confused: All of the ancient texts and most of old grammars are out of copyright and downloadable free of cost. I would consider a thorough self-study to be a minimal requirement for somebody who advocates for it, although I agree with NASDAQ that ideally, one would be formally academically educated in that vein. Of course, people have different priorities and different values as to what consititutes a problematic thing to do, so I do not pretend you, or he, or anyone, necessarily share mine. Words are not "pointers" of the kind that you can easily replace one label with another label. Language is not a nomenclature. Languages differ in some very basic parsing of reality, not only in labels they attach to things. THAT is why translation is difficult and why machine translation has serious issues with memetically burdened texts. (That was a Jewish, not a Christian thought.)
  10. Maybe we disagree as to what is "bad comprehension"? Who is the arbiter of their bad comprehension, anyway? I think, in any case, that the arbiter has to be on the same level of scholarship as them - somebody who can also access the text in the original. Yes, because I do not define it by method (I am still puzzled as to what "teaching classically" exactly means), but by content (I know what are the contents of "classical education"). I do not think being a first year college level in a language classifies as "having the skill partly" in any but the most literal sense (in the same sense in which anyone who can read the Greek alphabet has the skill partly - but such a tiny part of it that it is silly to take it into account). To me it sounds like Mr. Kern knows less Greek than I know Aramaic, and I would never dream of discussing anything specifically related to Aramaic under a professional guise. I cannot fathom doing it, and nope, I cannot fathom professionally advocating for something I have not mastered myself. Furthermore, I am capable of divorcing his linguistic competences from the validity of his general ideas. As somebody who actually received, as a child, the kind of classical education (albeit in a spirit of a different national tradition) that many people here are attempting to do, and who has that as a living culture in her broad family, his ideas (and not only his) often sound very "weird" to me. I find it interesting, in a way, to see how another culture conceives "classical education", but it is in many ways a total mismatch from what I know as such. But what do those things even MEAN to you, Bluegoat? (the bolded ones; bolding mine) This is my main issue. Y'all are talking in totally vague terms, which I do not think can be applied as categories to much of what you are talking about (literature and truth? fictio is a separate category from either verum or falsum). The study of classical civilizations has always been about a philological study first and foremost, not any kind of romanticized "picking up the values". What it was always about is that kind of study - that is how I was taught and what I received as a notion of what is classical education. Not "picking up the values" nor generalties of truth, beauty, whatever. It was about a CONCRETE basis of certain knowledge, and a living tradition in sense of having that knowledge, appreciating it aesthetically, and passing it on - not in sense of trying to "copy" the ancients in our values, lifestyle, pedagogy or anything like that. (Furthermore, my approach to litarary theory is not exactly "modern" and is quite an oddball in much of the academic mainstream, but that is an off topic already.)
  11. Agreed, on all counts - maybe I should have been a bit more precise in my wording earlier. :)
  12. The positives: 1) I have been always focusing on the concrete content I wanted to teach, not on the curriculum - which brough about a lot of mixing and matching along the way, but I knew what I was doing, so the mishmash of things I typically used was typically successful. I think it is very important to have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish to be able to accomplish it in the first place. 2) My kids are very independent and proactive about their learning and other things in life. 3) I think the philological component of their education turned out pretty neat. The negatives: 1) Delayed musical education. I will not be "democratic" with the next child, I often cannot believe how come I let the practical musical education slide in the grand scheme of things. It cost my eldest a lot of nerves when she decided to pick up an instrument at a taaaaad bit 'old' age (old in the sense of de facto closing her the door of professionalism, should she want to go there). My mistake for not insisting on it earlier. Music is my single biggest regret. 2) I messed up French. Which sort of contradicts 3) of positives, but I really messed that up - too much delaying, too much "they will pick it up via travel", starting to study it seriously at 13, rather than 8-9, at latest, as we should have. Thank Heavens their native language is a Romance one, so they can progress exponentially in French and at the end of the day the difference will probably not be felt, but I should have done it earlier. I should have postponed classics and emphasized modern foreign languages more in the earlier years. The next kid will possibly be off to Alliance's "half-daycare" at 3-4 for a few years (I am going to schedule it the way I get a de facto French babysitting while I run errands :tongue_smilie:, should we live in a place where it is reasonably nearby) and then study French as a regular school subject from the very first grade. French is too important to us to repeat that mistake again.
  13. I do not see a discrepancy between native languages (well, the native language & the "de facto" second native language) - but I do see with foreign languages, because it often takes a while to pick up the correct intonation and "flow"... and if you have a different script there, it gets even more interesting, because even though children can read it silently with an adequate speed, reading it aloud at the same time they are decoding it mentally can interfere a bit, I think they are always a bit slower with that unless they consciously practice - that is where I saw the improvement.
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