Visual Latin

As a homeschooling mom, I am filled with a hundred different varieties of angst and doubt over how well I am teaching my children. Am I covering it all? What if I leave out something really important? What if they aren’t prepared for college when the time comes? And I know I’m not alone, because at every single curriculum fair I’ve ever attended, I see mom who pore over books and charts and CD-ROMs and DVDs just trying to be sure we are providing our kids with the best education we possibly can.

After five years of teaching my children at home, I have learned that one of the best things I can do to put my mind at ease is to invest in good curricula that I KNOW is teaching my children what they need to know about any given subject. It doesn’t take a homeschooling parent long to know which publishers are reputable and which leave big gaps in learning. There are good, solid curricula out there, but sometimes you have to weed through a few bad ones to get to the ones that you stick with.

Take Latin, for example. I knew from early on in this journey that learning Latin is part of a classical education. However, my only exposure to Latin was when my mom enrolled me in a course at the local junior college when I was in middle school and I cried after every class until she let me quit. (Perhaps I was a little more dramatic than the situation called for, but it was a time I needed a little grace and was HAPPY to bow out.) I knew I needed a well-developed, well-respected Latin curriculum that gave my girls a solid Latin foundation. I tried out one curriculum that indeed met all my criteria, but MA thought it was boring, so we struggled to get it done every day. I really needed something that was going to be slightly more entertaining than translating words and memorizing declensions from a workbook. Needless to say, Visual Latin was a God-send.

Not only does Visual Latin provide a solid foundation in teaching the language, Duane does it in a way that is silly and entertaining to my 11 year old. She really looks forward to watching the videos. Also, one of the hallmarks of Visual Latin is the belief that children will earn a language better by immersion into the language than by studying a textbook. As a result, Visual Latin uses lots of stories, paragraphs, and texts which hold student’s attention and teach them more than merely translating a list of sentences that don’t fit together. (Sure, there is some translating of sentences, but the immersion technique works WONDERS!)

Y’all, anytime a curriculum gives my children a solid foundation of learning AND does it in a fun way, I am a fan. Because, I gotta tell ya, it’s no fun to have to make a child in tears study their Latin vocabulary or translate their sentences. It’s really nice when they say, “Mom, I think I’ll go watch a Latin video.” We, alrighty then.

I really appreciate that Visual Latin sent us lessons 11-20 to do this review, but I would have given them a great review anyway. They really are our curriculum of choice.

And so you know, I’m finally over the middle school drama and learning a little Latin myself. 🙂

What about you? What are your tried-and-true curriculum choices?

Speak Your Mind

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.