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    starting late... without latin?

    This may be a crazy question for this board, but I'm going to throw it out there anyways.

    I have a rising 8th grader who is (1) math-y, (2) musical, (3) science-y, (4) a slow reader, (5) stressed out. I need to simplify somehow for both of our sanities.

    What about using 8th grade Core w/o Latin, subbing our current math and science? He's been learning German for years now and is just coming to the point where he can really use it. He's got a math curriculum he loves. And I think I know where to go with science for him based on his strengths/personality.

    Would that be nuts? Right now he is bogged down with very wide and extensive readings (something that my second child thrives on; him, not so much). He thrives on rules and grammar/spelling/etc have always come really easily for him.

    Emily

    #2
    Re: starting late... without latin?

    Originally posted by EmilyGF View Post
    This may be a crazy question for this board, but I'm going to throw it out there anyways.

    I have a rising 8th grader who is (1) math-y, (2) musical, (3) science-y, (4) a slow reader, (5) stressed out. I need to simplify somehow for both of our sanities.

    What about using 8th grade Core w/o Latin, subbing our current math and science? He's been learning German for years now and is just coming to the point where he can really use it. He's got a math curriculum he loves. And I think I know where to go with science for him based on his strengths/personality.

    Would that be nuts? Right now he is bogged down with very wide and extensive readings (something that my second child thrives on; him, not so much). He thrives on rules and grammar/spelling/etc have always come really easily for him.

    Emily
    Paging Angel for input She's awesome at sharing ideas about coming to MP later in the game, and being comfortable with where you are.
    Plans for 2022-23

    Year 12 of homeschooling with MP

    DD1 - 27 - college grad, bakery owner
    DD2 - 16 - 11th grade - HLS Cottage School - online classes, looking at dual credit - equestrian and theatre
    DS3 - 14 -7A Cottage School - soccer/tennis -dyslexia and dysgraphia
    DS4 -14 - 7A Cottage School -soccer/tennis -auditory processing disorder
    DD5 - 10- 5A, Cottage School - inattentive ADHD - equestrian and tumbling
    DS6 - 9 - MP 1 - home with momma

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      #3
      Re: starting late... without latin?

      Emily,
      I'm so glad you had the courage to post this question! So, you are thinking of the eighth grade package with your math/science of choice, and minus Latin (because he's so deep in German). Taking a quick look at this set I think your son would really be relieved by the handful of literature selections! The Iliad and Odyssey courses are amazing. You would need to consider his placement in writing (Classical Composition) and grammar because that is cumulative and he couldn't just jump into Common Topic/English Grammar Recitation V. Same on Geography 3. That class assumes two previous years of slower work through the classical and the remaining world. You could definitely do it as a more light treatment than is expected in the plans if you wanted to go survey-level and not mastery-level for that. Since he is a slower reader, you might take advantage of the literature selections on audio books in advance of him actually studying them to help familiarize himself with the characters and plot.

      And about Latin. It's funny--the way you describe him makes him sound like an ideal candidate for Latin! All that work in German would easily convey to the conjugations and declensions in Latin. Have you decided that you don't want Latin on his plate or has he decided he's in too deep with German to add something else? You can certainly do parts without Latin, but it's really the golden thread through the curriculum. The other pieces do work better when you are noticing the roots everywhere from Latin. If he massively reduced/focused his work load by switching to MP, do you think he'd enjoy a light Latin course like First Form? He'd certainly recognize the grammar but would need some mental space to store vocabulary. I think he's very well poised, but if you think it's really too much, then I would not let that stop you from learning more about MP and giving it a go next year. I do appreciate the deep not wide approach and we always can tell you what we've learned at the end of the year. That's great satisfaction!
      Festina lentē,
      Jessica P

      '22-'23 • 13th year HSing • 11th year MP
      DS Hillsdale College freshman
      DD 11th • HLN & Latin online
      DD 8th • HLN & Home
      DS 5th • HLN & Home
      Me • Memoria College, MPOA Fourth Form for Adults

      Teaching Third Form Latin and co-directing @
      Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, est. 2016

      Comment


        #4
        Re: starting late... without latin?

        Emily,

        I had the same reaction as Jessica when I read your post - your son sounds like having Latin would be another perfect fit for him! And the beauty of the languages is that they offer so much within one subject - practicing so many thinking skills that are valuable and applicable to any other subject area. German is still a great option, but Latin is a much more common "root" of so many other disciplines. Especially if he continues with math and science in college, having Latin in his repertoire would be extremely helpful!

        If you are interested, I think Henle would be a great way to go for your son because he is older and because he has the experience of German. He could probably go pretty quickly since he is so familiar with language study already. There is more application to translation earlier than in the Forms series, which keeps it interesting for older students. And another value I see is that while reading literature in English is great, the fact that my children can read things in Latin (or Greek) is even better. Talk about learning language skills from the masters!

        As I have had more children approach high school, I have realized that the same things that I held up as priorities in the younger years really still apply - which means getting the most bang for your buck! Focusing on languages, math, literature and then high school sciences too, really helps streamline the curriculum. I think the 8th grade package would be a great fit, but even with that, remember to strive for quality of work over quantity of work.

        AMDG,
        Sarah
        2020-2021
        16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
        DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
        DS, 17
        DD, 15
        DD, 13
        DD, 11
        DD, 9
        DD, 7
        +DS+
        DS, 2

        Comment


          #5
          Re: starting late... without latin?

          Yeah, he's be the perfect candidate for Latin, but I need to simplify his life. So, studying Latin would be up to him, but dropping German is not an option (he can almost read books!). He'll probably be doing German grammar in German next year. If he decides he wants to do Latin, I'll let him, but I don't want to push more hard things on him.

          Thanks for the input, that this isn't quite crazy. I looked at Classical Composition and was really impressed by it.

          How long does Grade 8 usually take the child each day?

          FWIW, my kid hates "fluff" or working on things that are too easy for him. He's supposed to be doing Analytical Grammar this year but has found it too simple since he already did Jr. Analytical Grammar and this stuff just comes to him naturally. How do I do the mastery things with him without frustrating him with unnecessary review (he does not need a lot of review)?

          Emily

          Comment


            #6
            Re: starting late... without latin?

            Hello.

            I'm thinking that 8th grade should take anywhere from 5-6 hours a day to complete.

            Tanya

            Comment


              #7
              Re: starting late... without latin?

              Originally posted by EmilyGF View Post
              Yeah, he's be the perfect candidate for Latin, but I need to simplify his life. So, studying Latin would be up to him, but dropping German is not an option (he can almost read books!). He'll probably be doing German grammar in German next year. If he decides he wants to do Latin, I'll let him, but I don't want to push more hard things on him.

              Thanks for the input, that this isn't quite crazy. I looked at Classical Composition and was really impressed by it.

              How long does Grade 8 usually take the child each day?

              FWIW, my kid hates "fluff" or working on things that are too easy for him. He's supposed to be doing Analytical Grammar this year but has found it too simple since he already did Jr. Analytical Grammar and this stuff just comes to him naturally. How do I do the mastery things with him without frustrating him with unnecessary review (he does not need a lot of review)?

              Emily
              If his quiz/test grades show mastery (85-90%), let him move on
              Jennifer
              Blog: [url]www.seekingdelectare.com[/url]

              2022
              DS18: Graduated and living his dream in the automotive trades
              DS17: MP, MPOA, headed to his favorite liberal arts college this fall
              DS15: MP, MPOA
              DS13: Mix of SC 5/6 & SC 7/8
              DD11: Mix of 5M and SC7/8
              DD10: SC3
              DD7: MPK

              Comment


                #8
                Re: starting late... without latin?

                Originally posted by EmilyGF View Post

                FWIW, my kid hates "fluff" or working on things that are too easy for him. He's supposed to be doing Analytical Grammar this year but has found it too simple since he already did Jr. Analytical Grammar and this stuff just comes to him naturally. How do I do the mastery things with him without frustrating him with unnecessary review (he does not need a lot of review)?

                Emily
                I bet he hates superflous English grammar because he's done SO much grammar already in German! Your exact question will be better answered when once you have your courses figured out for next year. Can you list which things you are definitely going to use, even if you don't know the exact level? If he's mid-way between the beginning of one but not ready for the next level, then he can accelerate but not skip through the portion he's already mastered. I think his distaste for fluff is going to meet a warm welcome with the MP materials. Everything you do always has a purpose!
                Festina lentē,
                Jessica P

                '22-'23 • 13th year HSing • 11th year MP
                DS Hillsdale College freshman
                DD 11th • HLN & Latin online
                DD 8th • HLN & Home
                DS 5th • HLN & Home
                Me • Memoria College, MPOA Fourth Form for Adults

                Teaching Third Form Latin and co-directing @
                Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, est. 2016

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: starting late... without latin?

                  Another follow up question: you said next year he should be doing German grammar in German - can you clarify that? There are different ways for studying languages - such as immersion vs grammar-based. How would you characterize his materials? Has he had grammar in his German studies yet?

                  AMDG,
                  Sarah
                  2020-2021
                  16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
                  DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
                  DS, 17
                  DD, 15
                  DD, 13
                  DD, 11
                  DD, 9
                  DD, 7
                  +DS+
                  DS, 2

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: starting late... without latin?

                    Originally posted by KF2000 View Post
                    Another follow up question: you said next year he should be doing German grammar in German - can you clarify that? There are different ways for studying languages - such as immersion vs grammar-based. How would you characterize his materials? Has he had grammar in his German studies yet?

                    AMDG,
                    Sarah
                    First, he learned German from immersion for about a year or two (ages 4-6), then limited immersion (6-8) that lead to receptive understanding but not spoken language. Now he does spoken German lessons with me and does computer-based flashcards to cement vocabulary, especially gender. We work through grammatical concepts as they come up in our conversations with a favorite grammar book of mine, which is written in German for high level German learners. So the grammar is more incidental than purposeful. When we clear the decks of some stuff that is causing overload at the moment, I want to do more grammar with him in German; but this year he's too overwhelmed with other things.

                    I think something really hard for me with teaching him German is that he knows waaay too much to do most beginner German grammars or books but is not mature enough for most books aimed at people with his level of receptive understanding. So maybe next year he'll be old enough for that?

                    Emily

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: starting late... without latin?

                      Well, see this is a great thing to think about for your decisions for him. Something I would offer for you to think about is that the reason we place so much emphasis on Latin in the Classical curriculum is because you can accomplish a lot of goals in one course. The fact that Latin is inflected means that the grammar is visible - making it an easier way to understand grammar than using English. Children who study an inflected language truly learn how "language" itself works. They also develop a myriad of thinking skills along the way because of the steps they have to practice over and over again to do their work. Also, a language is reflective of the culture which produced that language. Thus the characteristics of how Latin works teach us a lot about the Romans - what they were like, what they valued, etc. This is a centerpiece of understanding Western civilization itself. The best counterpoint to it is to then follow up with learning Greek as well - because both the language and the people were so different. When you think about the regional differences of folks in the U.S., and the language patterns they each have, you can see a bit of this at work as well.

                      When you mentioned that your son spends a lot of time on German, I think we all assumed that he was learning the grammar along the way. Since German is an inflected language, it can offer similar benefits to learning Latin, so if that was the centerpiece of your language studies, it would still be a good way to go. But the way you described it with the grammar simply being "incidental" to his study, that makes a bit more of a difference.

                      Since what you really want is to be able to lighten his load and streamline his work, my best recommendation to you is like I said before: to try to get the most bang for your buck - choosing those things that will give him the most educational value with the least amount of courses and texts. Therefore you need something to help him master the use of language, master the use of mathematics, read great works, and apply mathematics to the sciences.

                      In the area of language - my best recommendation to you is to have him start Latin. I know it is not what you thought you wanted, but I think it solves your problem. He has enough experience in German to not want to have to start something from scratch. And I cannot stress enough to you how important taking him through a strong grammar-based inflected language is. Starting fresh with Latin would allow him to do that. Don't think of it as "adding" something on, but rather, taking something very valuable and building the curriculum around it. In addition to this, I would add on the Classical Composition writing program. Since he is older, a great way to help him move steadily through this would be to enroll him in the MPOA if you can. Otherwise, I would start him in narrative, let him go at his pace, and when he seems confident with it, move right on to Chreia/Maxim.

                      Then you just need to figure out the appropriate math and science courses. As for "reading great works," this is where you have some more flexibility based on what he has already done. To keep it pared down, I would suggest focusing on choosing four literature selections, and a course of Classical Studies. Maybe choose a Christian studies course to be done in the summer so that he does not miss that completely but it is not a part of his workload over the year.

                      I hope this offers you some more ideas. Whenever I am deciding for my kids, (who each have their own personal "threshold") I always start with that idea of language and math being the foundation, and then I build from there.

                      AMDG,
                      Sarah
                      2020-2021
                      16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
                      DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
                      DS, 17
                      DD, 15
                      DD, 13
                      DD, 11
                      DD, 9
                      DD, 7
                      +DS+
                      DS, 2

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: starting late... without latin?

                        Alright, I'm still thinking through things...

                        Does anyone do Latin with English grammar only as needed? (This kid is bored to tears by Analytical Grammar, which was what I'd chosen for this year, as it just comes so easily for him.) He doesn't need a lot of review in this area. What is the language arts package to go with that? I'm not opposed to more, but I need a way to telescope as needed efficiently.

                        I've got math/science figured out for him. (He's in Algebra II right now, will finish in June. I'm thinking Physics next year for science. I studied physics, husband is astrophysicist, so he'll have good support at home.)

                        I'd probably do everything else in the core. Just had a friend talk about the Iliad with me on Sunday (he's a classicist and it was really encouraging) so I am more inclined that way than before. He reads deeply, but I think he'll enjoy having fewer books but more discussion.

                        For moms with multiple kids, how do you schedule time with your older ones? I feel like my younger ones are more demanding, which means my older one gets what is left over at the end. Any ideas on making that work better?

                        Thanks,
                        Emily

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: starting late... without latin?

                          Hi, Emily.

                          We don't continue English grammar or spelling into high school, except as it pertains to issues in our students' writing. Our upper level language arts consists of literature and writing. It sounds like your student has a good handle on English grammar, so Latin is probably sufficient. At that point, let Latin handle your grammar, and spend your language arts time honing writing skills.

                          Tanya

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: starting late... without latin?

                            Emily,
                            Can you tell us how many kids are in your family and what grades? Any special challenges in the mix (learning differences, weekly obligations, passionate hobbies, etc.)?
                            Festina lentē,
                            Jessica P

                            '22-'23 • 13th year HSing • 11th year MP
                            DS Hillsdale College freshman
                            DD 11th • HLN & Latin online
                            DD 8th • HLN & Home
                            DS 5th • HLN & Home
                            Me • Memoria College, MPOA Fourth Form for Adults

                            Teaching Third Form Latin and co-directing @
                            Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, est. 2016

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: starting late... without latin?

                              Five kids (13, 11, 9, 6, and 2).

                              13-year-old plays elite piano.

                              9-year-old is an Executive Function Rock Star violin player.

                              6-year-old is gifted and with more energy than I've ever had. Would have been a quarterback 30 years ago. Extroverted to the max.

                              Emily

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