This post was eaten by WordPress a couple of weeks ago so I am finally getting around to rewriting it.
As I have gotten older, one of my biggest regrets about my education (both school and self taught) is a failure to learn some Latin. I have been in a polyphonic choir and attended Latin Masses for years but have never sat down to learn what I am saying.
I have resolved to fix this defect partly because of a new book called The Latin Centered Curriculum. This book is the ideal tool for parents who want their children to receive a “classical” education that actually involves reading the classics, learning Latin and Greek and graduating high school knowing how to think and learn instead of what passes for education in most places these days.
The book gives a brief history of education, a defense of a classical education and a suggested reading list from 1st – 12th grade. The center of the book is the largest and most important part. This section contains a curriculum overview for each year including scheduling and suggested reading.
For those who would like to teach themselves and/or their children Latin, we highly recommend the Memoria Press Curriculum. This series starts with very rudimental lessons for 1st and 2nd grade in Prima Latina and progresses through the Henle Latin series in high school. The series also teaches classic Latin hymns and chant in the Lingua Angelica program and also includes classes on logic, rhetoric, the Bible and historical biographies of ancient Greeks and Romans.
We are currently going through the Prima Latina book and by the end will hopefully know about 120 words, a few prayers and some basics of Latin grammar. Our 1st and 2nd grader are picking things up well and even our four-year-old and I have learned some of the words.
If you are planning on teaching your children some of the Greek and Roman classics, I strongly recommend the Questions for Thinkers series by Fran Rutherford (my Mom) and illustrated by James Rutherford (my brother). This series gives you study questions, maps, background, vocabulary lists and questions for further thought.
The Greek set consisting of a student workbook and teacher’s guide includes sections on the following works:
- Iliad by Homer
- Odyssey by Homer
- Selections from The Histories by Herodotus
- History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides
- The Persian Expedition by Xenophon
- The Oresteia (Agamemnon, The Choephori, The Eumenides) by Aeschylus
- The Three Theban Plays (Oedipus Rex, Antigone, Oedipus at Colonus) by Sophocles
- The Clouds by Aristophanes
- The Republic of Plato
The Roman set includes:
- Early History of Rome by Live
- War with Hannibal by Livy
- Conspiracy of Catiline by Sallust
- Attack on an Enemy of Freedom Cicero
- Attack on Misgovernment by Cicero
- The Annals of Imperial Rome by Tacitus
- The Aeneid by Virgil
- The Metamorphoses by Ovid
- The Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
- Early Christian Writings
- The Confessions by St. Augustine
- The City of God by St. Augustine
- The Brothers Menaechmi by Plautus
- The Brothers by Terence
For those who would like to have a ready-made resource for teaching the great works of Greece and Rome (and coming soon, Medieval times), there isn’t a better resource. Yes, this is family but after my Mom homeschooled three kids through high school and wrote these books because nothing else was out there, I think I’m pretty unbiased about the quality of the work.