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Lukeion: the Witty Wordsmith?


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My daughter took this class last fall and hated it.  Her major complaint was that for at least 15 minutes of each class the instructor was advertising their upcoming trips and other classes.  She also disliked the lack of interaction in the class.   The instructor went over all the words and gave helpful tips during the class but that was the extent of the class.  I had planned on her taking their grammar course the following spring but she said she would never take another class from Lukeion.  I was really disappointed because I had read so many wonderful reviews about their Latin classes.  Maybe it was just a poor fit for her learning style.

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My ds took this class last year and LOVED it.  It was quite a bit of work, but he is a vocab buff and really enjoyed the class and Mr. Barr.  I would hear him laughing out loud during class.  

 

He then took the grammar class (Barbarian Diagrammarian) the following semester and also enjoyed that class. This year, he took an AP English Language class and told me he felt the grammar class had really helped prepare him for it.

 

Personally, I thought the classes were well worth it.

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She also disliked the lack of interaction in the class. The instructor went over all the words and gave helpful tips during the class but that was the extent of the class.

 

I just wanted to address the question of student interaction, in the hope of perhaps sparing other students from disappointment if they are looking for a lot of student-to-student interaction.

 

The way Lukeion classes are run is that kids can chat with each other, via the chat box, until class starts; at that point the teacher changes the settings so all student comments go to the teacher. One reason for this is that Amy and Regan tend to ask lots of questions during class, to which students type the answers. Having the answers go to the teacher privately encourages all students to answer, not just the 2 or 3 students who always seem to get their answers in first, and it avoids embarrassing students who answer incorrectly. It also allows students to ask questions without disrupting the class — Amy & Regan will pause to answer important questions, or clear up things that several students are having problems with, but for example if one student has a tangential question, the teacher may ask that student to email him/her after class.

 

DS has taken many Lukeion classes, as well as a few other online classes in different formats, and he much prefers the Lukeion format. Having watched or sat in on some of this other classes, I can say that the Lukeion format seems to be a lot more efficient — in some of the other classes, I have seen students chatting with each other in the chat box while ignoring the teacher, I've heard kids with mic's turned on talking on top of each other, and I've seen kids interrupting the teacher to ask questions that I thought were better saved for later. So personally I prefer the Lukeion system, where the kids have 5-10 minutes before class to chat, and then it's all business after that. But I can understand that a student who prefers interacting with other students throughout a class might be unhappy with Lukeion's methods.

 

(ETA: In the upper level language classes, the kids do speak in class, as they read their translations aloud.)

 

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Lukeion classes are run like Art of Problem Solving classes---good to know. Dd was looking at the lit classes for the future.

 

I think I wasn't very clear — my understanding of the AoPS classes is that they are text-based only (both teachers & students type, there is no spoken component). This isn't true of Lukeion.

 

With Lukeion, you listen to the teacher lecturing in real time, although you don't see him/her — what you see on the screen is text, photos, graphics, charts, etc., which the teacher may highlight and annotate while talking. Students type in their answers to the teacher's questions, as well as their own questions to the teacher, but the teacher responds verbally — e.g. Amy might say, in response to answers students type, "Good job Michael, Thomas, and Suzanne; Carter, think about what tense the verb needs to be in; some of you are not matching the case of the adjectives to the noun, try again..." etc. Or if a student asks for clarification, the teacher will pause and answer that question so the whole class hears, including possibly drawing on the screen, going back a few pages to reinforce something, etc.

 

I hope that makes things clearer. The classes actually have a lot of student-teacher interaction, just not much student-student interaction. ETA:  Lukeion also provides a lot of interactive activities on the Quia class page — flashcards, games, self-quizzes, etc.

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Yes, we've done Lukeion and VPSA, and Lukeion is less interactive.  The sessions are more focused though, with less discussion and participation.  You have a one-hour class versus several hours a week.

 

Just different styles.  My oldest liked his teachers at both places, but preferred the more concise format of Lukeion for Latin.  For history and literature, the more interactive style was better.

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Yeah, that's what I meant (and I wasn't clear----blame typing while talking), that the teachers are in control of the interaction and conversation during the class time.

 

Yes, the teachers are definitely in control, which I prefer to some of the other classes I've seen, where kids were interrupting each other or the teacher, ignoring the teacher, etc. Also, in a couple of the classes DS tried, the teacher would call on individual students, just like in a B&M class, and then that student would turn on his mic, and/or write on the digital white board, while everyone else waited for him to answer, which chewed up a LOT of time. With Lukeion's system, all students can answer at once, without disrupting the class, and they can answer every question rather than just the one or two that they were "called on" to answer.

 

Lukeion's system also allows them to stay on schedule, so that students can print out the syllabus before the class even starts and know exactly what will be covered each week, including specific homework assignments, dates for every quiz, etc. One of the other classes DS tried had a very "fluid" schedule that students needed to check regularly for changes, and there were no pre-scheduled assignments or firm due dates — I knew that wasn't going to work for DS. I really appreciate how efficient and well-organized the Lukeion classes are.

 

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