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Latin: MPOA vs. CLRC vs. Lukeion (Homework Load, Quality, etc.)


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Ack!  If you would have talked to me 2 weeks ago, I would have told you that I was all squared away with my plans for DS's 9th grade year.   He has taken a lot of classes with MPOA, and I was planning on having him take a lot more in high school, but I have been less than pleased with the academy lately.  Quality at MPOA varies a lot depending on which teacher you get, and they seem to be having staffing issues this year.   I was closed out of Susan Strickland's class (she's a wonderful teacher), so now I am left with a TBA teacher and time.   Do I roll the dice and hope they assign a decent teacher?  Or do I move providers?  And if I do move providers, where should I go?

Background:   My son is a STEM kid, and languages are not his strong area.  He has taken Latina Christiana, and First - Third Form Latin with Memoria press.  He also too the NLE intro exam last year and only missed one question.  (He didn't take it this year because of some family medical issues.)   I was thinking of switching him to CLRC Latin I or Lukeion Latin I.  (Review wouldn't hurt, right? And then I could be sure there weren't any gaps? ).

So can anyone compare CLRC vs Lukeion vs. MPOA Latin?  Or review any of these providers?  What is the workload like in these classes?

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I can’t compare as we only have experience with CLRC Latin (and WHA, but you’re not considering them). But I can tell you, my DD is thriving in and loving Anne Van Fossen’s instruction in CLRC Latin 3 this year. She recently mentioned that the Oxford Latin textbook is so much better than Latin Alive series used by WHA. I really regret wasting my time on a very average/lackluster experience at WHA.

Workload is always hard to measure for this particular DD. She’s a fast processor and very efficient worker. I don’t think she spends more than 30-45 minutes per day working on Latin, but she does do it daily 5-6x per week, in addition to the two-hour class 1x per week.

I would ask for Anne’s help with placement; the only downside to beginning in Latin 1 is that your student will not reach AP Latin (Latin 5) in high school, if that’s important to you.

Good luck with your decision!

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Dd#3 would say Lukeion is much more competitive & intense (workload-wise) than MPOA. She had a great teacher at Lukeion but did not like the competition & stress. MPOA was not her cup of tea either, though. (This is not my Loves Live Classes Kid, but she does enjoy comraderie in live classes.) I have no experiemce w/CLRC Latin. Lukeion is great for the right kid, IMO. You really learn translation skills from the beginning.

She learned a lot in Lukeion. They seemed to move quickly.

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My oldest took one year of Latin (in 7th grade) with MPOA, and then moved to another provider before finally switching to Lukeion.  I wished we had started with Lukeion from the beginning, but the reviews always made me hesitant because it seemed so rigorous (which it is!)  But my ds really loved Mrs. Barr and did very well on the AP Latin exam (As an aside, when he was applying to graduate school he did not have time to study for the GRE.  He did very well on the exam, and he said the only way he knew the "crazy hard" vocabulary on the GRE was because of Latin.  And that really says something because he took AP Latin in 10th grade!)

I had our dd start with Lukeion from the beginning (all of my kids start with Latin at home in 4th grade, and start with high school Latin in 7th or 8th grade).  While she loved Mrs. Barr, she did not LOVE Latin.  She took Latin 2 years at Lukeion, studied one year at home, and then switched to Spanish (which she loves and is majoring in it in college).

I would say that for both older kids, the workload was about 8-10 hours/week.  Our oldest is a STEM kid but very bright and works quite fast, so he was probably more at the 8 hours/week for Latin III and AP Latin.  Our dd probably spent closer to 10 hours/week, but I would say this may have had more to do with the fact that she was young (7th and 8th grade for Latin I and II) and she really did not love Latin.  She did do extremely well in the classes and could translate Latin exceptionally well even after just two years with Lukeion.

Unless things have changed, Mrs. Barr posts the names of the individuals with the highest scores for quizzes and exams (first names only).  This is motivating for some (but maybe not for others?)  I am signing our ds up for Latin I with Lukeion for next year (he will be in 8th grade).  He does really seem to like Latin, so I think it will be a good fit.  

I sat in all the classes with my dd, and Mrs. Barr is a fantastic teacher.  She is very timely with all grading and answering questions.  Lukeion is definitely a quality class with superb instructors.  I do think of all the Latin classes available, it is the most intense, but I felt like it was time well spent.  

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3 hours ago, mjbucks1 said:

My oldest took one year of Latin (in 7th grade) with MPOA, and then moved to another provider before finally switching to Lukeion.  I wished we had started with Lukeion from the beginning, but the reviews always made me hesitant because it seemed so rigorous (which it is!)  But my ds really loved Mrs. Barr and did very well on the AP Latin exam (As an aside, when he was applying to graduate school he did not have time to study for the GRE.  He did very well on the exam, and he said the only way he knew the "crazy hard" vocabulary on the GRE was because of Latin.  And that really says something because he took AP Latin in 10th grade!)

I had our dd start with Lukeion from the beginning (all of my kids start with Latin at home in 4th grade, and start with high school Latin in 7th or 8th grade).  While she loved Mrs. Barr, she did not LOVE Latin.  She took Latin 2 years at Lukeion, studied one year at home, and then switched to Spanish (which she loves and is majoring in it in college).

I would say that for both older kids, the workload was about 8-10 hours/week.  Our oldest is a STEM kid but very bright and works quite fast, so he was probably more at the 8 hours/week for Latin III and AP Latin.  Our dd probably spent closer to 10 hours/week, but I would say this may have had more to do with the fact that she was young (7th and 8th grade for Latin I and II) and she really did not love Latin.  She did do extremely well in the classes and could translate Latin exceptionally well even after just two years with Lukeion.

Unless things have changed, Mrs. Barr posts the names of the individuals with the highest scores for quizzes and exams (first names only).  This is motivating for some (but maybe not for others?)  I am signing our ds up for Latin I with Lukeion for next year (he will be in 8th grade).  He does really seem to like Latin, so I think it will be a good fit.  

I sat in all the classes with my dd, and Mrs. Barr is a fantastic teacher.  She is very timely with all grading and answering questions.  Lukeion is definitely a quality class with superb instructors.  I do think of all the Latin classes available, it is the most intense, but I felt like it was time well spent.  

MJBucks, I think I know you in real life based on your kid description.   This is Cathy from Speech and Debate.  🙂  I was like, "this family sounds very familiar "  

M_ was super upset about possibly switching form MPOA Latin, but they've only got two sessions opened and seem to be having a hard time retaining instructors.  

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5 hours ago, mjbucks1 said:

Unless things have changed, Mrs. Barr posts the names of the individuals with the highest scores for quizzes and exams (first names only).  This is motivating for some (but maybe not for others?)

My kid HATED this practice no matter if she was on the list or not. My kid liked her Lukeion teacher, Mrs Fisher, as a person. Very encouraging & sweet.

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My oldest (now a senior) did Lukion 1-4. He really liked it and did well on the AP Latin Exam last year. He really liked Mrs. Barr. It was overall a great experience. It is rigorous and a lot of work but we were pleased with our experience. I think in Latin 1 and 2 that I'd guess he spent something like an hour a day on average. By AP Latin 4 it was probably more like an average of 8-10 hours a week because there is more writing and just a lot of translation. 

He is also a STEM kid (mostly Math) and not a writer or really that into languages; I think he liked Latin because it's somewhat logical. He is a fast reader and bright and generally a good student. He is not a natural writer and I credit Lukeion with really helping him with writing.

Mrs. Barr was by far his hardest teacher in any setting he's every had and he often half-joked about being scared of her. Even to the point of trying to participate in his class from his phone on our lawn while we were in the midst of a house fire last spring (yes, seriously...he finally had to type into the chat that he had to go because the firemen wanted him to move.) He had it so ingrained that you NEVER miss class or are late. For him, it was a good thing. I think he liked rising to the challenge. He is also a competitive swimmer and he would sometimes compare her to his swim coach who has some of the same no-excuses mentality. We are fairly relaxed in our homeschool overall and he didn't do a ton of online classes other than Latin so having that experience of hard deadlines and no-excuses was good. Every year I gave him the option of switching to a different Latin class that might be less rigorous. I somewhat pushed that idea for junior year as I really wasn't sure he needed to spend so much time on Latin. But he very much wanted to stick it out and I think came out of the 4 years with a huge sense of achievement. This year he is juggling several demanding online AP classes and I think the experience with Lukion set him up for success. 

He didn't mind the names of the top students being listed as far as the exam scores. She doesn't ever call out people who did poorly. And again, as an athlete he has that competitive mindset a bit. I think he liked it when his name was listed (which was not often, he did well but wasn't usually one of the top three) but he didn't stress about it when it wasn't. 

I'll also say that he got great feedback from Mrs. Barr. She was hard on his writing when it wasn't good but in a constructive way. And then when she did praise him, he felt like he earned it. And she wrote a recommendation for him for college (I assume it was positive since he's gotten in everywhere he applied so far :)). 

All that said, it's a great experience for the right kid. My second son would never in a million years be a good fit for Lukeion. He's a totally different kid and learner. 

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On 2/18/2021 at 10:57 PM, Alice said:

 

I'll also say that he got great feedback from Mrs. Barr. She was hard on his writing when it wasn't good but in a constructive way. And then when she did praise him, he felt like he earned it. And she wrote a recommendation for him for college (I assume it was positive since he's gotten in everywhere he applied so far :)). 

All that said, it's a great experience for the right kid. My second son would never in a million years be a good fit for Lukeion. He's a totally different kid and learner. 

Was there a lot of writing in the Latin classes?  Or are you talking about the "Great Books" program also offered there?  

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9 hours ago, TheAttachedMama said:

Was there a lot of writing in the Latin classes?  Or are you talking about the "Great Books" program also offered there?  

There was a fair amount of writing in Latin 3 and definitely in the AP Latin 4. I can’t remember if there was any in Latin 2. He also did two English classes there (College Comp and Shakespeare). Those were also very good but I felt like it was really Latin that taught him how to write and that was because of Mrs. Barr. It’s a  very specific kind of essay, but more important for my son was being forced to do it on a deadline and then that Mrs. Barr has such high standards. Learning how to master those essays have home the confidence to write other kinds of essays. 

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