My Latin students are a varied bunch, from history lovers to avid athletes, and sometimes both. They like excitement, and prefer to move when doing things like rote memorization. We play competitive team games, and hold Roman festivals, including gladiator games (with protective fencing gear!).
Latin requires strong focus, and an attention to detail.
My students learn best when I can make the learning interesting and engaging.
Our school has a wide income range, with about 60% low income, and 65% minority students. Every student has the chance to choose Latin as an elective, which gives them high school credit towards their advanced diploma. My goal is to make Latin an exciting choice for all students.
Via Periculosa is a beginning-level novella in Latin that is an adaptation of a story by Petronius. It is scary, with monsters and an evil inn, just the sort of thing to appeal to my middle school students!
Having a class set of this novella means that everyone can read the same engaging story, and we can explore the grammatical and cultural resonances together.
My plan is to have the novella to read towards the end of the year, when students are tired of the textbook and its emphasis on grammar. I hope that they will be delighted that their skills will allow them to easily understand the story, thus encouraging them to continue to enjoy Latin!
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