Friday, September 02, 2016

Welcome Back to Latin

Welcome back! We at Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers hope that you enjoyed your summer and are ready for another exciting and rewarding school year! While the first week back is full of syllabi, class expectations, new names (and new, more grown-up faces to go with old names), and more, we know you want to jump right into learning as well. This post gathers some ideas for that first week back.

Let us know how these work. If you have a favorite welcome-back activity you'd like to share, let us know. We'll include it in next year's welcome back write-up.

B-C author Rose Williams
receiving the ACL Merita
Award from ACL president
 Kathy Elifrits back in June.
Decorate your classroom, Latinē. This idea is simple. Have your students break into groups to write Latin vocabulary on index cards and affix them to the appropriate item in the room. Prepare a list or let students use a dictionary and their own creativity.

Visit Italy. Hand out or project a blank map of Italy (you can find a free one in the Digital Content Tab on the product page for A Roman Map Workbook) and have students guess where certain key ancient cities and geographical features are. For Vergil classes, the free map of The Wanderings of Aeneas found on our Digital Resources for Teachers link could be used. For those interested in speaking and introducing simple sentences, Rose Williams has an excellent example of a map lesson for the first day of Latin.

Learn something new about (your)self. Have students research the etymology of their names and then present them to the class. This could easily be combined with other common ice-breakers like the old stand-by 'what they did over the summer.' Students could also choose a Latin name as part of this activity.

Write a story, Latinē. The easiest way to do this is to use a story you've already written and remove some words like a Mad-Libs. You can find several of these on the internet, like here and here. If you write your own, you can work in characters from myth or history for extra review. To help introductory classes, you may want to hand out cards with suggested vocabulary and have students choose a card to play for each blank. If you like this activity, The Pericles Group sells a polished card game version you may want to invest in.

Celebrate birthdays early. Use a calendar with Latin quotes (the free one from B-C works great, download here if you didn't get a copy in the mail). Give each student the quote from their birthday to to translate or present.  This activity creates the opportunity to revisit each quote throughout the year on the student's birthday and as you learn the grammar each contains.

Do you have any experience using these ideas you would like to share? Are there other activities or resources you use? Feel free to comment below. I'd love to hear from you!