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Everything posted by Steven

  1. I have only briefly scanned through one of the other common Latin texts besides SSL, Minimus, and Wheelock, so I do not have a clear basis for comparison. I don't even remember which one I looked at. I have never seen Minimus Secundus. ISL teaches Latin as if it were a living language. The emphasis is on direct understanding, not translation. It does not include Roman history or culture. It teaches grammar by examples/patterns, not wordy descriptions. We did most things spoken. I don't remember writing anything (or very little--my daughter dislikes having to put pencil to paper). The book suggests making flashcards by drawing pictures and labeling the back of the card in Latin (no English). We tried that, but it was hard, so we switched to taking pictures, printing them at Costco, and then labeling them. (After the first year of Familia Romana we switched to the computerized flashcard program, Anki.) If I were doing it over, I would have started right away with Anki, which allows you to build flash cards using pictures, movies, sounds, as well as text. Here is a link to the ISL website: http://ispeaklatin.com I would suggest a good English grammar alongside ISL and FR. I liked KISS Grammar because it emphasized identifying the words fulfilling the various grammatical categories in real sentences, not the memorization of definitions. I think we started KISS in 3rd grade.
  2. We started I Speak Latin in February of 2nd grade (after we had done some SSL and Minimus). We started Familia Romana at the end of 3rd grade, after we finished ISL, but we restarted FR at chapter 1at the beginning of 4th grade.
  3. Although it is not immediately apparent from the book, it will take you several years to cover Familia Romana. There is an active discussion group for FR, and from that I learned that typically in U.S. high schools, only 9 chapters a year are covered. (As a college text, it is covered more quickly.) We have been doing 8 to 9 chapters a year. We did 9 the first year. At the end of the second year, we were working on chapter 18, but did not finished over the summer. So in the fall we started chapter 18 again and went through it quickly. We are just now completing chapter 21. We do about a chapter a month. Note that the sequence of topics covered is very different from traditional course. Only in the last couple of chapters have we covered future, perfect, and imperfect tenses. On the other hand, we have covered all the noun and adjective declensions and passive voice. (This is an issue if you want you kids to do the National Latin Exam, since the material for year 1, for example, includes various tenses.) Since there are 36 chapters in the book, we have at least one to one and half more years with it. But there is a follow-on Latin literature course: Roma Aeterna: Pars II (Lingua Latina). We did not start with FR. First we did SSL (a waste of time), Minimus (fun, but not comprehensive), and I Speak Latin (which I highly recommend). It might have been hard to take a my daughter directly into FR, but with the very solid base from ISL, we had no problem. I should also add, that if one is learning Latin primarily as vehicle for learning English grammar, FR might not be a good choice. We have been using KISS Grammar since second grade, and it meshes very well with FR. She has no problem recognizing subjects, direct objects, indirect objects, finite verbs, etc. in English, so the introduction of these concepts by example in FR was no problem.
  4. If you really want one class for both, I would seriously look at I Speak Latin by Andrew Campbell. It teaches Latin as if it were a modern language. The emphasis on on understanding and speaking, not translating. Grammatical concepts are illustrated by examples and patterns, not wordy explanations. So it would be very usable by a child who can mimic patterns, but not grasp grammatical explanations. Unlike SSL, by the time you finish the 55 chapters, your kids will actually have a very solid grounding in Latin grammar--nominative and accusative case for the first two noun and adjective declensions, present tense verbs for all four conjugations, etc. Even if your younger one can't fully keep up with the older one, they will both get more out of ISL than SSL. ISL is not particularly desk-bound. Verbs are introduced, for example, by giving commands (jump, sit, run, etc.). It also introduces vocabulary for modern household items, so you can talk about the things in your house. The chapters on food has you make a menu and play restaurant. (Even if you don't want to teach them together I still recommend ISL.) The book recommends making flash cards with student drawn pictures on one side and the Latin word on the other. We started out that way, but then shifted to taking photos and writing on the back. Alternatively, you could use a computerized flashcard system like Anki to make flash cards with a picture or movie, text, and sound file (to better accommodate your younger one. We ultimately moved our vocabulary drilling to Anki. If I were starting over, I would use Anki from the beginning. I speak Latin is very scripted and so is very easy to use. I would combine ISL with a solid English grammar program. I use KISS Grammar, which emphasizes identifying subjects, direct objects, conjugated verbs, prepositions, etc., in real sentences rather than memorizing definitions. I found it tied in very easily with ISL. My only complaint with ISL is that there is no follow on book. We switched to Familia Romana with great success once we were done with ISL.
  5. During the school year, we used only the textbook and workbook. Over the summer I would use the IP books for review. I did not assign all of the problems, only enough to ensure that things were not forgotten. Since the IP book has word problems, I did not find it necessary to buy CWP.
  6. I was unaware of Orberg's Exercitia Latina until recently, and purchased Nova Exercitia Latina when I first discovered it because I felt like we needed the extra practice. I can't compare the two since I have never seen Orberg's book. I do like Nova Exercitia (except its lack of an answer key).
  7. I didn't have the books handy when I wrote my first response. Here are the books that I am using: Lingua Latina per se illustrata: Pars I Familia Romana (Hans H. Orberg)--this is the basic text. Lingua Latina per se illustrata: Teacher's Materials -- reproduces the exercises from the text book in a format easier to copy for students, but more importantly, it has answers to all the exercises. Lingua Latina per se illustrata: Latine Disco Student's Manual (Hans Orberg) --Has a brief explanation in English of the grammar that is presented by example in the textbook. I as the teacher use this to make sure that my daughter has comprehended the grammar that was presented in each chapter. Since I am learning alongside my daughter, this book is useful to clear up my own confusion. Lingua Latina per se illustrata: Colloquia Personarum (Hans H. Orberg) -- has 24 supplemental stories about the characters from Familia Romana in dialog form using the vocabulary and grammar for each chapter. We read these after we have completed the corresponding chapter in Familia Romana. Nova Exercitia Latina I (Roberto Carfagni) -- a newly published book that provides additional exercises for each chapter of Familia Romana. I highly recommend this, as I do not think that the basic text book has enough practice. The only drawback of this book is that there is no answer key. I wish it had been available when we first started the book. We are now doing the exercises that match our current chapter, as well as exercises from past chapters as review. All of these and more will come up if you search Amazon for "Familia Romana Orberg." I see there is also a supplemental exercise book by Orberg himself. I don't know why I didn't buy that--probably an oversight.
  8. We use Lingua Latina (by Olberg--I believe there is another book with the same title). We are in the middle of volume 1, Familia Romana. My daughter does find it fun, as it has an humorous overarching story line. There is no English in the text. The student is suppose to intuit the meaning of the text from the context and the sidebar illustrations, etc. The grammar is illustrated with examples. The book does not emphasize translation, but understanding of the text. The book builds very carefully from one chapter to the next, so there are not huge leaps and the student should be able to understand each successive chapter. We used I Speak Latin prior to this, and in order to have more "people" to talk to, we included assorted stuffed animals (dressed in old tee-shirt togas) into our Latin class. Now when we do the exercises, it is a girls team against the boys. One of the girl stuffed animals (voiced by me) helps correct my daughter's work before it is compared with the boys' answers, which are filled with humorous mistakes (supplied by me). To use the text most efficiently, you will need to buy several supplement books (such as a the answer key to the exercises). There is also a small booklet in English that explains the grammar chapter by chapter, and a new publication with additional exercises for each chapter. While it may seem like a lot of books, it will take you 3 or 4 years to complete Familia Romana (9 chapters a year is apparently normal in a high school setting). There is a discussion forum of teachers who use this series, and they are very helpful to us home schoolers. We also drill the vocabulary using the Anki flashcard system.
  9. The old German script was already dying out before the Hitler era. My wife's grandmother and her siblings were given a choice when they were in school before WWI as to which script they wanted to learn, German or Latin (as our style of script was then called in Germany). Her grandmother opted for German, her brothers for Latin. My wife was never able to read her grandmother's writing. Very few Germans know how to read it today. There is some interest in Germany in this script and in recent years books have been published to teach people how to write in the old script. I taught myself to read and write it because I possess extensive family documents written in it. Quite frankly, it is not very practical except for doing genealogical research. I find it very illegible because so many of the letters are based on the same strokes: u, m, n, c, and i can look very much alike (u often has a line over it to distinguish it from n). More practical would be to learn to read the printed script as one may still stumble across old books printed in Fraktur (mainly in university libraries that have not bought new copies of the classics since WWII). Here is a link to Amazon Germany for a book that teaches how to read and write in the old script: http://www.amazon.de/gp/product/3426667533?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=od_aui_detailpages00. The book is called Deutsche Schreibschrift: Lehrbuch (by Herald Süß)
  10. Unfortunately my daughter still makes careless mistakes, partly because she won't write down the in-between answers that she generates with her mental math skills.
  11. Thanks for all the input. I guess I should stop worrying about her pace. I do like the idea of splitting the session up. When we did Singapore, we would do the Textbook in the morning and the Workbook in the afternoon.
  12. Well, today she raced through the remaining 6 problems in less than 25 minutes. Maybe just the drudgery of factoring is slowing her down. We usually did Singapore Intensive practice over the summer, but for the fifth grade books, we did two Life of Fred books (Fractions and Decimals) instead. She hates anything remotely like drills, so I wonder if she just lacks the automaticity one needs to make work like factoring go faster.
  13. Yes, the section problems also take a long time to complete. She did Singapore for 1 through 5 and wants to do everything mentally. I have had a hard time convincing her that she needs to write some things down, although that battle seems to have been mostly won now that we are in chapter 3. I am pretty sure that she understands the material. She gets the right answers most of the time. And when she doesn't, it is usually because of a computation error, or she tells me that she doesn't understand, or that she needs help. The problem is, I can't tell if she is daydreaming or not. If I make a comment to her to stay focused, she gets mad at me for interrupting. But if I don't hover over her, the pace gets even slower.
  14. Based on comments offered in other threads on AoPS Prealgebra, I am limiting math to 1 hour per day. So when the hour is up (sometimes with an extra 5 or 10 minutes to compensate for obviously wasted time), I let my daughter stop. We are currently on chapter 3 Review Problems. She is managing to get about 5 problems a day (although some of these might have multiple parts, or an a, b, c, and d problem). We have already spent 3 lessons on the review problems and will need at least one more. If I try to get her to move quicker, I get tears. Am I being unreasonable to expect her to move at least a little faster?
  15. I would always space, so I vote for B.
  16. We are continuing with KISS Grammar. It's very easy to use and has lots of constant reinforcement of previous lessons. The program has been revised since we started it, but we continued using the older program. We are finishing Level 3.2 this week, and will move on to Level 4. We had tried FLL back in first or second grade and quickly decided it was not for us. Here is the link for it: http://www.kissgrammar.org
  17. We have also just transitioned from Singapore 5 (Standards ) to AoSP Prealgrebra. My daughter also did Life of Fred Fractions and Decimals and Percents as a supplement while doing Singapore. So far we have done only chapter 1. She is not working as independently as I would like, but with some hints she is seeing how to approach the problems using the AoSP approach. So far I judge it a success. Learning how to write down the style of proofs that AoSP wants in chapter 1 (demonstrating basic arithmetical principles like the communicative, associative, and distribution properties and applying the definition of subtraction, negation, reciprocals) is new to her. The Singapore approach emphasizing mental math has left her wanting to write down just a final answer. I am using AoSP to train her to show the key steps of her thinking. I am eager to see how chapter 2 (exponents) goes. I have read that chapter 2 is the hardest in the book. The advanced topics relating to exponents covered in that chapter will be completely new to her.
  18. Each book is one semester. So book 5 B would normally be the second half of 5th grade. We always followed the suggested weekly schedule in the Home Instructor's Guide, which is (I think) 18 weeks long. The books for 6 grade are a little different than the ones for grades 1 to 5, since 6 grade is a review year in Singapore. There is no Home Instructor's Guide for 6A and 6B (at least not in the Standards Edition, which we used). After trying to read as many posts on this as possible, I have concluded that the 6 grade book is essentially a "pre-algebra" consolidation of math skills. I think students go into Algebra after book 6B. The books offered by Singpore Math for 7th grade and above are a combined algebra/geometry course, that seem to be less popular than the grade school program. Most people seem to want separate algebra and geometry programs, since that is what U.S. schools have traditionally used. In any event, we are shifting to Art of Problem Solving Pre-Algrebra this year and plan to use AOPS Algebra for 7th grade. (If the style of that text doesn't fit my daughter, I will revert to Singapore for 6 and seek out a different Algebra text). Since you are so close to the end of the core Singapore series, I am not sure what advantage you would get from it. Normally, I buy the textbook, the workbook, and the HIG, as well as Intensive Practice. The HIG was probably most useful in the early grades to learn the Singapore method for presenting the material, and for learning the how to draw and use the diagrams that Singpore uses to solve problems. Regarding the edition to buy, we liked Standards (which was based on standards written by the state of California, which California has dropped in favor of Common Core standards). The U.S. edition is an adaption of the original Singapore book for the U.S. market (using U.S. measurements, currency, etc.). When we started, the publisher was pushing parents to use the Standards Edition, but they have announced their intention to ultimately stop publishing the Standards edition, effectively replacing it with the Common Core Edition. Common Core seems to cover fewer topics than Standards. Did your placement test indicate what edition it was based on? There is a webpage at the Singapore Math website that compares what topics are covered by each edition. You might make your choice of editions based on what topics you need to cover.
  19. How do people handle the financial transactions when they sell and buy from the Classifieds forum. Paypal? Personal checks? Do you only ship after payment has been received? Thanks.
  20. We do several languages and try to do a little in each most days (minimally, my dd does a flashcard review for each language using Anki). Steven
  21. Just to make explicit what others have said: The Student Response Book is just numbered columns to write in the spelling words. The newer Student Workbook has some other activities. I noticed that the most recent teacher's books that I bought have answers to the activities in the workbook. We use only the Response book because it came along with the teacher's book when I bought it.
  22. The distinction between adjective and passive construction often depends on the intent of the speaker/writer and the context. Whenever there is a prepositional phrase indicating an agent, the sentence should be considered a passive construction. Consider these sentences: The door was closed. The door was closed by the wind. The second is clearly a passive construction. Absent any other context, I would consider the first an adjective. But if you added more context, my view would change. Consider this sentence: The door was closed with a bang. The emphasis has shifted from the state of the door, to the action of the door closing. I would consider this sentence a passive construction. The grammatical analysis is not always clear. But if you primarily consider the past participle as indicating the state in which the subject was in, then the past participle is probably best considered an adjective. If the focus of the sentence is on the action of the past participle (as it always is when there is an agent named in a prepositional phrase), then I would consider the sentence to be a passive construction. In your original sentence (We were not impressed), impressed could be seen as a state of being, the condition in which the subject (we) exists. But if the context focuses on someone's effort to impress the subject, one could argue that it is passive. I suggest telling the student that the distinction is often unclear, and that often it is possible to view a sentence both ways (albeit with a subtle difference in meaning).
  23. Have you considered just reading basic texts with them and discussing grammar topics as they occur? I have been frustrated in finding a suitable Spanish curriculum for my daughter, so that is what I have ended up doing in that language. I would also strongly recommend using something like Anki flash cards to build up vocabulary. Previously we would forget vocabulary very quickly. Now I enter the Spanish words from the texts we read into Anki. It has made a huge difference. My daughter speaks German very fluently, and we have used assorted language arts workbooks meant for German grade school students, such as those put out by Duden (search on the amazon.de website under the search term "Lernhilfe." But these books probably don't have the explicit grammar that you need. We use a lot of German CDs, songs, as well as science and history-themed materials meant for children. My daughter likes the Was ist Was series. She loves listening to the CDs put out by the rock group Randale, which as very age appropriate texts. My daughter has also been attending Saturday morning German school, but wants to give it up. Since there is a cohort in our town of very fluent children, they have used the Duden workbooks I mentioned above for their text. I am not exactly sure what text the other students who are not fluent are using, but I have not been impressed with the things I have seen at the school.
  24. My daughter does both Latin and Spanish (as well as German and Korean). Mixing has not been a problem. Although we have apparently completed about the equivalent of 2 years of high school Latin, our text book has yet to introduce past tense forms. I am hoping that my daughter's knowledge of Spanish past tense and subjunctive will grease the skids.
  25. The only way I got my daughter to drill math facts was playing the games at the SumDog website. We used Singapore, but she refused to practice with flashcards.
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