Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Looking at Latin Reviewed in Spring 2007 ACL Newsletter

The Spring 2007 newsletter published by the American Classical League (ACL, Vol. 29, No. 3, pp. 13-14), featured an outstanding review by Boston Latin Academy's Suze Herold of Anna Andresian's Looking at Latin pre-college grammar. Below is the review in its entirety:

"Anna Andresian, a former middle- and upper-school Latin teacher in East Greenwich, Rhose Island, presents in this ancillary text a plethora of topics that are arranged by grammatical category. The book begins with guidelines for its use, notational and pedagogical remarks, and ends with the appendices. The detailed table of contents simplified locating topics. This book is a grammar review and reference that is appropriate for Latin students beginning their first year of Latin not only at the middle-school level but also at the high-school level.

"The strength of the book is in the spiral approach to learning the basics: starting with the basic concepts such as noun terminology, alphabet and pronunciation, declining and conjugating and building the students' knowledge base until supine, passive periphrastic, and subjunctive mood are attained. The writing style is easy to read and comprehend. The visual elements create optimum appeal and intrigue. they guide the students to an ongoing, alluring, and effective presentation of the forms and syntax. They also bring clarity and synergy. Every lesson is designed to cover a single topic and every page has layouts adorned with text boxes, arrows, example sentences, and color illustrations. The text boxes assist students to follow a step-by-step approach. The arrows connect information to the example sentences and important information is highlighted in colors bringing vivacity to the page. The pictures reiterate the author's purpose, which is for 'people of a variety of ages and ethnic backgrounds to engage in a wide range of activities.' Middle-school and high-school Latin students are reflections of our diverse society and they are able to see themselves and accept students with perspectives other than their own. In today's times, teachers need to diversify their syllabi, to be more aware of classroom dynamics, and to pay more attention to how their students are experiencing the learning process. This dynamic book will cater to diverse classrooms.

"The book is extremely well designed and compiled. It is a great companion to Latin for Americans (especially the 1st book). It is a useful and practical tool for students studying Latin at the middle-school or high-school level."

-30-

To order the book (or a classroom set), click here. Also, look for Looking at Latin on-line later in 2007 with interactive drills, exercises, and a community for both teachers and students!

Andrew