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Greek curriculum question for Plaid Dad or anyone else


buddhabelly
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We started Elementary Greek this year, which both my son and I love. After he has finished his Greek for the day, he even asks if he can do another lesson! So what is the problem, you ask? I cannot help but overthink things. Admittedly, I should have done this "overthinking" a little while ago.

 

I chose Elementary Greek because it appeared to be the most successful/ popular program out there for the grammar stage. My son and I would have preferred to study Ancient Greek instead of Koine. I glossed over that minor detail with him, but sure enough on the first day he asked about it. He was disappointed that he was learning NEITHER Ancient Greek or modern Greek. But (see first paragraph), he loves this program we are doing.

 

We are not Christian. It doesn't bother us, though, that all of our memory verses are from the Bible ....anything to learn Greek! (It helps that in "Carry On, Mr. Bowditch," Bowditch teaches himself Latin and French with grammar books and with Bibles in those languages.) The introduction to EG says that Koine is a simpler version of Greek than Ancient Greek. It also says that it was the "universal language" of the marketplace around the time the NT was written. So here's the million dollar question: will it be a nuisance for my son to learn Ancient Greek later? Should I stop Greek after EG Year One and wait until later so we can do Ancient Greek instead of Koine? I guess what I'm asking is, how different is it?

 

I see that TWTM recommends Athenaze for Ancient Greek in the logic stage. Do you agree or do you prefer a different program for Ancient Greek?

 

Thanks in advance for all of you Classicists who have read this far.....

 

Edited to add: I went to the Latin-Centered Curriculum forum and someone there said that it would be fairly easy to transition from Koine to Attic Greek at a later time. So if you agree with that, no need to respond to this!

 

Julie

Edited by buddhabelly
Added answer from LCC forum
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...I went to the Latin-Centered Curriculum forum and someone there said that it would be fairly easy to transition from Koine to Attic Greek at a later time. So if you agree with that, no need to respond to this!

 

Okay, lol, guess I've got nothing to say then! ;)

 

We plan for our kids to move on to either Athenaze or the JACT course "Reading Greek" after finishing Elementary Greek. I'm not sure which of those two we'll choose yet though...

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I have not done Greek with my dc, but I have studied Greek -- started with Classical (Ancient), then Homeric, then Koine, tried a teeny bit of modern, a bit of Linear B, no Byzantine. Koine Greek is easier than Classical -- and because most people will be reading the NT, the vocabulary will be limited by that. Some parts of the NT are quite easy -- I remember in college we began reading Mark on the second day of class (and the class was in Classical, not koine Greek). Paul on the other hand has such convoluted sentences that you really need to translate very exactly to avoid misunderstanding. If you want to go on with koine (but not Christian content), you could get a Septuagint, the Greek version of the OT, after a while. It is quite simple Greek for the most part. IMHO, Koine is where I would want to start with a child -- I think it would be much easier to move to Classical, rather than the other way around. And koine-Classical are much, much closer than, say, medieval and modern English.

 

Sorry to ramble a bit -- I was not planning to write so much!

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I've shared this before, but will post it here again since it is relevant to your question. I tracked down my Greek professor from college to ask him a similar question. Here was his answer:

 

Anyway, you have nothing to worry about concerning Koine and Attic. It is encouraging to think that some students might get to a such a level of Greek in high school that this could be a concern. I hope this is true! But in any case, Koine is based on Attic and is, generally, somewhat simplified. There are also, of course, some vocabulary differences, but these are easily manageable. As you found out, reading Koine after having learned Attic is more or less a breeze. So of course going the other way will be a bit more work. But I think under the circumstances, having any background in ancient Greek would be a boon for later on. If your daughter were 18 and wanted to read Aeschylus, I wouldn't recommend studying Koine, for sure. But if she--or another child--has a year or two or three of Koine and then moves on to Attic, s/he would still be at a great advantage compared to other students. And who knows, maybe she'll discover botany and jazz drumming and have no time for Greek! So I'd tell whoever might be interested not to fret about this at all.

 

HTH,

Dawn

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I'd agree with the others. I wouldn't worry about the differences between Koine and Ancient (Attic/Homeric) Greek. When the time comes, your son will be able to deal with the differences, especially if he's working his way through a book like Athenaze (which includes both ancient and New Testament Greek passages and eventually lines from Homer. The JACT Reading Greek curriculum is also quite good. Both are essentially reading-based and can be used inductively, but you'll certainly learn plenty of grammar.

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Wow, Linear B! I think you get some sort of prize for that.....and if someone ever makes an annoying comment to you at a party or something, you can start talking about Linear B.....that can be our new "pass the bean dip!"

My son loves languages and I won't be the least bit surprised if he eventually branches out to Hebrew and Arabic.

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My son and I would have preferred to study Ancient Greek instead of Koine. I glossed over that minor detail with him, but sure enough on the first day he asked about it. He was disappointed that he was learning NEITHER Ancient Greek or modern Greek. But (see first paragraph), he loves this program we are doing.

 

 

Galore Park is coming out with Greek Prep this year. The best ETA I have for it (from the publisher himself) is 'before next September'. If it's anything like their Latin Prep, it will be rigorous but fun, suitable for ages 9/10 and up. Oh, and it will be secular and classical.

 

Best wishes

 

Laura

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I did not mean to imply that I "knew" Linear B. I can't even claim to have forgotten it. I was in a non-credit seminar on Linear B, and the closest I came to knowing it was being in a room with a teacher who knew it and with other students who were more industrious than I was.

 

Truthfully, learning Linear B is interesting to the type of person who thinks Akkadian cuneiform is fun, but not to most people.

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