I received this letter:
I am a 17-year-old high schooler (homeschooled) taking your Visual Latin course (I just finished VL1 and will soon be starting VL2). To start, I would like to say that your course is a lot of fun, and I am thoroughly enjoying learning Latin. Before your course, I didn’t think much of learning a new language beyond what I have to for high school, but given how much fun this course has been you have inspired me to try to continue learning languages beyond my required high school course and see how far I can get.
My first question is one of reading Latin. I have been trying to read one of the Latin primers designed for this task, Carolus et Maria, however, I am having trouble with a specific part. Verbs going at the end of sentences often makes it difficult for me to read a sentence well because I won’t be able to tell what’s going on until the very last word. I was wondering if you had any advice, tips, or tricks when it comes to being able to read more comprehensively and hopefully be able to read faster. Is there a shift in mindset? Is it because the endings aren’t memorized yet? Is this something you delve more into in Visual Latin 2 or in any of your other courses? Does it just require more practice? Any help here would make my Latin reading experience much easier.
My second question to you is a bit broader. Like I have said I hope to continue practicing Latin and learning other languages, my current plan is to start Spanish after I have finished the bulk of Latin and work my way through many of the Romantic and other European languages before I take on a language with a completely new alphabet such as Greek. I was wondering what you thought of this plan and was wondering if you had any other advice as I move ahead in my adventure.
Here is my reply:
Hi! I am happy that you are enjoying Visual Latin.
As for your first question, the answer is simple. Latin is annoying. It has taken me years to get used to the verb at the end of the sentence. Unfortunately, it seems to only get worse. I am reading your orations of Cicero right now, and he loves to put the verb at the end of the sentence. You nailed it. It’s a mindset. You just have to get used to it. I usually end up reading every sentence twice. I have to go back to the beginning and start over once I have the verb. Blah.
As for your second question, yes. I love this idea. You are going to find a lot of the Latin in the romance languages of Europe. I will not say that Latin makes these languages easy. But, it certainly makes these languages easier. I highly recommend using DuoLingo. It’s free. And fantastic. You can even follow friends there. If you jump in and start learning, my username is Enawd. Look me up. We can study together. I recommend Italian and Spanish immediately after a Latin. Or… during. These languages will actually help you with Latin. They are sort of like Latin lite.
By the way, every Saturday, I send out a tip of the week. I also include announcements, upcoming classes, and so on. This is the main way I keep up with students and parents. If you would like to hear from me every weekend, and if you haven’t already signed up… sign up for my weekly updates here:
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