Why we made Visual Latin

I received this inquiry:

Hi Dwane,

I am a bit conflicted about what I should do for my 13 year old grandson  (I homeschool him). He’s doing the work of Challenge A this year, but is not in a community. There was not one this year. He does not enjoy schoolwork and is not self motivated, but is very smart.

I purchased Henle 1 course because it was on the “agenda”, and I owned the books. Plus, I knew I couldn’t teach it. He is willing to try, but I’m concerned now at the pace and that possibly I’m setting him up for failure since I have been reading more on your site. (I initially tried not to focus on the lazy student advice.)

The Visual Latin is tempting.  Can you give me your best advice at this point? Can I purchase Visual Latin and get a refund on Henle 1 course? We could do it next year. But I would hope to get a full two years after actually starting. Perhaps doing the Visual Latin for a year might help him learn to love Latin more. He’s worked on memorizing the noun declension charts and seems to understand them. He’s fairly good at English grammar after two years in CC’s Essentials.

Or should I just start the Henle class with him? Orientation is Wednesday so I need to make a firm decision. 

I really appreciate your time. I’m reading VIA, and know how busy you are. Thank you so much for your excellent resources.

 Here is my reply:

Hi, Leslie!

I am impressed that you are homeschooling your grandson.  I don’t hear about that much.  

I would hate to see you work your way through Henle Latin just because it is on the agenda.  As much as I hate to say it, that book is a joy killer.  I have seen it take many students down.  To be honest, only my most motivated students seem to make it through without losing all interest in Latin.

We designed Visual Latin for people like you.  We knew there were mothers (and a handful of grandmothers) out there who were trying to teach Latin.  The problem was, they themselves did not know much Latin.  We also knew there were kids out there working their way through some of the most boring textbooks on the planet.  In the beginning most of them were eager to learn Latin.  By the end, most of them hated Latin.  

When we designed Visual Latin, we wanted something the kids could enjoy, and something the mothers did not have to teach. 

I would recommend you drop Henle 1 and go with Visual Latin.  You can always pick Henle Latin up later if you like.

I will happily refund tuition for Henle 1.  Not only that, but if you wait until next week, Compass Classroom is running a back to school sale.  I know they will be selling Visual Latin at a discount.  Here is their address: http://www.compassclassroom.com/

Let me know what you decide.

Happy to help you with this.

Dwane Thomas