When The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew was offered Latina Christiana I Complete Set by Memoria Press to review, I almost passed it over. My son is too young for Latin, I thought. Latin isn’t a very important subject to study, especially at my son’s age. And really, we don’t need to add more craziness to our day by introducing yet another subject into our already packed school schedule.
However, my heart was changed as I researched the program and realized just how beneficial a little Latin education could be. I also watched a sample lesson with my son. From just that short video, my son had already learned a few Latin words and was eager to learn more. So we jumped on board!
Latina Christiana I
Latina Christiana I Complete Set can be used with any child but is geared towards children in grades 3 and up. It’s also made for teachers, like myself, who have no background in Latin. The Latina Christiana I Complete Set costs $98.90 and, I might add, is worth every penny. The complete set comes with:
- Teacher’s Manual – a sturdy wire spiral soft cover book
- Student Book – softcover consumable book
- Instructional DVDs – 5 discs for 18 hours of instruction, covering 25 lessons
- Pronunciation CD – includes all songs, prayers, and the pronunciation of all Latin vocabulary
- Flashcards – black and white cardstock
Latina Christiana I is fun and easy when you’ve got Latin teacher, Leigh Lowe, coming right along with you for the ride! The instructional DVDs are awesome! I love them because they make teaching Latin absolutely effortless. Each lesson in the book comes with video instruction. The video covers all the new vocabulary words, conjugations, declensions, derivatives, Latin sayings, history, and so much more!
The teacher’s manual contains a copy of the student workbook, answers to the exercises, derivatives, quizzes, tests, vocabulary index, noun and pronoun forms, verb forms, Latin sayings, music and words to songs, teacher guidelines, reproducible drill pages, schedule suggestion, and answer keys. It’s very well laid out and easy to use.
The pronunciation CD is so helpful in learning the correct way to pronounce the Latin words. The CD has all of the correct pronunciation for each lesson as well as prayers and songs.
Each lesson comes with several flashcards made out of cardstock and perforated for easy separation. The flashcards are great for reviewing all the vocabulary, conjugations, and sayings for each lesson. Most cards even show some English derivatives on them.
The student workbook contains each lesson’s Latin saying, vocabulary words, grammar forms, and exercise page. There is a map and indexes in the back containing all the prayers, songs, sayings, vocabulary, pronunciation rules, and history questions (if you are using the Famous Men of Rome guide along with this Latin study).
In the general teaching guidelines of the teacher’s manual, they encourage students to create a loose leaf binder to organize their work in. We had five separate dividers:
It proved to be very helpful in keeping everything together and in order.
Usage and Thoughts
We were usually able to complete one lesson per week. Sometimes we would take more time if needed.
Our weekly schedule looked like this:
Monday – We watched the lesson video together and my son completed the exercise page in the student workbook.
Tuesday through Thursday – We started off the day by listening to the pronunciation CD and then my son would fill out the vocabulary and grammar dill pages. Lastly, we reviewed the words from that lesson and previous lessons using the flashcards.
Friday – After review, it was quiz or test time.
My Son’s Thoughts
Studying Latin is really fun. It is interesting to see how many of our English words come from Latin words. It was easy to memorize the Latin words. It has already helped me to understand what some difficult English words mean.
I absolutely love this Latin curriculum! Since I have no background in Latin, I was a little worried when we first got started. I didn’t know what a conjugation was and I was feeling rather intimidated. However, with the instructional DVDs, it turned out to be the easiest thing in the world to teach. And fun, too.
My son really took off with this program. He loves it! I had no idea he would enjoy learning another language so much. He caught on really fast and everything seems to be sticking, too. He tells everyone he meets that he’s learning Latin and then follows it up by spouting off a few words. His dental hygienist was impressed!
My son asks to do Latin first every day. He especially loves learning derivatives. He even started discovering his own derivatives! After learning the Latin word for life, vita, look what he came and showed me!
Vita juice or life juice! I was quite impressed.
I found one drawback from learning Latin – the spelling. For a struggling speller, like my son, learning Latin spelling can really create some confusion. I didn’t stress the spelling for this reason. If he spelled the word correctly, great! If not, oh well.
This is just me but because my son was so interested in learning derivatives, it would’ve been nice to see more of that emphasized in the curriculum. I would’ve loved to see a list of derivatives with the definitions written out for my son to study. Because there were so many derivatives in each lesson, it could’ve been helpful to have the derivatives divided into appropriate age groups. As it was, I wasn’t sure which derivatives to suggest he learn over others. I ended up typing out the derivatives for each lesson and circling the ones I thought were most beneficial for him to learn. I did this for the first few lessons but afterwards it was too labor intensive for me to continue.
A perforated student workbook would be really nice, too. We really would’ve liked to be able to tear out the student exercises from the student workbook to put in our 3 ring binder. That way all of my son’s work could be kept together in one place.
I would definitely recommend Latina Christiana I to anyone looking, or not looking (like me), for a beginner’s Latin curriculum. My son and I have both learned a lot and enjoyed the journey. We plan to continue with more Latin courses from Memoria Press after we complete this course!