A 15 year-old girl sent a homework assignment to me. Here are the first three questions and answers:
1. Quid fecit Achilles? Hectorum ducem Troianum interfecit atque corpus eius mortuum post currum suum traxit circum moenia Urbis troiae.
2. Quid fecit Romulus? Prima moenia Romana aedificavit et Remum fratrem interfecit quia moenia humilia deridebat.
3. Qualem fabulam Quintus audire cupit? Quintus dicit, “Iam vero nec de hominibus nec de bestiis audire cupio. Narra mihi fabulam de aliquot feroci monstro, cui caput bestiae et corpus hominis est quod homines vivos vorat!”
After grading her homework, I sent this note to her:
Good grief. Can I ask you a personal question (I may have asked before…)? How old are you? From time to time, I like to blog about my star students. You rank among them. You continue to consistently score high even in the upper-level chapters. This is very impressive and very rare. Well done!
Here is her reply:
I really appreciate your kind words. I put a lot of time into Latin and you motivate me to keep trying to do my best. You are a great teacher.
For the first year of Lingua Latina I did your quizzes as my form of grading and was progressing well with a good average grade, but this year I switched to Pensum C as my means of grading, it is much more work, but I am understanding the book so much better now and having more fun. Whenever I start a new chapter I first make a list of the Pensum C questions and do my best to translate them. Then as I am reading the chapter, in class with you, or watching the old videos I will be looking for answers to the questions. The book always has the answers and it becomes almost like a game finding them. Sometimes they only need a slight adjustment in order to work as an answer. Other times I like to come up with my own answers just for fun. You have done a great job making Latin enjoyable. Even when I am struggling on a topic I know that with your help, if I put enough effort into it, I can eventually understand it. All of those endings are going to take some time, though!
One last note from me:
Thanks for saying all of that. I have been grading for the last six or seven hours and I am tired of it. Yesterday, I graded for 9 hours or so. I only say that to say this. You likely have no idea what your diligence means to me. When I see your name in my inbox, I know that I am going to read good work. If you exercise the same level of diligence in all your work, then you must be a very good student.