Latin

Welcome to Latin at Mott Hall 2!

I can be reached with questions or concerns any time this year at mbuturovic@motthall2.org. I look forward to hearing from you!

We are studying Latin....

1. First of all, because studying Latin will make us more sensitive readers and writers of (every) language. Latin is a programming language; it shows the hidden patterns and structures of other languages in more explicit form. Latin is the direct ancestor of many languages that scholars may go on to study--or may already know: i.e. Spanish, French and Italian. Latin will improve scholars' grammar and vocabulary in English. (7th grade students, for instance, will be learning that many of their ELA vocabulary words this year come from Latin, and that they can use their knowledge of Latin to guess words' meanings). 2) While Latin is strictly speaking a 'dead language,' it is omnipresent! Students use Latin in social studies (Homo Erectus, Homo Habilis, Homo Sapiens Sapiens) and science (to give the official names of plants and animals, to talk about elements in chemistry); they hear Latin in music (classical and contemporary). Latin is the language of mottos: the USA's "e pluribus unum," New York state's "excelsior"...And we use Latin in our writing, often without noticing (etc., vs., i.e., Re:). I hope scholars will become more attentive to these usages over the course of the year. 3. Finally, we are studying Latin in order to be better historians of the Romans. Roman history and Latin literature are full of many of the same problems that we face today: personal (lovesickness, friendship) and political (organizations of power, war, economic inequality, race, gender). While it rarely offers solutions, Latin literature does offer the comfort that we aren't alone in our difficulties! The Romans don't need to be role models, but they are examples: of what to do, and what not to do. (6th grade scholars will have the special treat of studying ancient history alongside their study of Latin).

And this is just a broad overview of some reasons for studying Latin. I hope scholars will discover many many more, unexpected connections between Latin and their other interests over the course of this year. I encourage them to share those connections: suggest words they think might be Latinate, bring in pictures of the Latin they find around them in New York City, or keep track of references to the Romans in newspaper, TV shows, movies, and music.

Our plan for the year (subject to revision) is as follows:

Unit 1 (Marking Period 2):

6th Grade Latin: (2x a week) In the first marking period, 6th graders will study English and Latin sentences to understand their parts. They will learn to identify parts of speech (noun, adjective, verb) and parts of sentences (subject, predicate, predicate nominative). Finally classes will jointly prepare projects describing the myth of the founding of Rome, and individuals students will be responsible for memorizing Latin proverbs ('sententiae').
-Latin and English: the history of the Latin language
-Founding myths of Rome; hero myths; the Romans and the Greeks
-Sentences and their parts; translation of simple Latin sentences involving "to be"

7th Grade Latin: (2x a week) 7th grade scholars will pick up their study of Latin from last year with a review of grammar, going over how to find the subject, verb, predicate nominative, and direct object in a sentence. They will become familiar with the idea that nouns have gender, case, and number, and verbs have person, number and tense. By the end of this unit, they will be able to analyze, translate and compose simple sentences in Latin, using a specific set of nouns and verbs. They will have a command of the most important episodes in the two main myths of Rome's founding, as well as a basic understanding of historians' and researchers' primary sources into those myths.
-Latin and English: the history of the Latin language
-Founding myths of Rome: Livy and Virgil
-Grammar topics: sentence analysis (subjects, verbs, direct objects, predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives); first and second declension nouns; Latin forms of "to be"; first and second group verbs

8th Grade Latin: (1x a week) 8th grade scholars will pick up their study of Latin from last year with a review of grammar, going over how to find the subject, verb, predicate nominative, and direct object in a sentence. They will become more familiar with the idea that nouns have gender, case, and number, and verbs have person, number, tense, voice and mood. By the end of this unit, they will be able to analyze, translate and compose simple sentences in Latin, using a specific set of nouns and verbs. They will have a command of the two major myths of Rome's founding, and some of the places where those myths still show--and continue to hold influence--today. 
-Latin and English: the history of the Latin language
-Founding myths of Rome and their legacy today
-Grammar topics: sentence analysis (subjects, verbs, direct objects, predicate nominatives); first, second, and third declension nouns, Latin forms of "to be"; first and second group verbs

Unit 2 (Marking Period 3):

6th Grade Latin:
-Latin and English: the Latin and Greek roots of words for government (in conjunction with the 6th grade Social Studies unit)
-The Greek and Roman gods
-Objects! (direct objects, indirect objects, objects of prepositions); 1st declension nouns; 1st and 2nd group verbs

7th Grade Latin:
-Latin and English: the Latin roots of English suffixes and prefixes
-Plautus, Terence, Seneca and the Roman theater (this unit will be based on adaptations of Plautus' plays from "Reading Latin" by Peter V. Jones)
-Third declension nouns; 2-1-2 adjectives; vocatives; apposition; imperatives of 1st and 2nd group verbs; what is a morpheme?

8th Grade:
-Latin and English: the Latin roots of English suffixes and prefixes
-Plautus, Terence, Seneca: the Roman theater and its modern adaptations (this unit will be based on adaptations of Plautus' plays from "Reading Latin" by Peter V. Jones)
-2-1-2 adjectives; vocatives; apposition; imperatives of 1st and 2nd group verbs; personal pronouns; what is a morpheme?

Unit 3 (TBA)

Students need a notebook (which I will periodically check throughout the year) and a pencil in class every day. Some homework should be submitted in hard copy; other homework may be submitted online through Google Classroom. Class pages on Google Classroom will be updated after each class, with resources and scheduling information. Besides their notebooks, scholars need only a willingness for adventure!

Ms. B