Latin at Regents Academy

One of the main questions we hear from parents is “Why Latin?” While there are many reasons we require Latin (for seven years!), the following explanation should suffice to provide an overview of our reasoning and programming.

For several decades the teaching of Latin was an integral part of any good academic training.

Consequently, the instruction in Latin at Regents Academy should need no explanation or defense. However, like many traditional particulars of good education lost in the name of “modern” or “progressive” education, Latin’s advantages have been neglected and forgotten by a couple of generations. Latin was regularly taught even in American high schools as late as the 1940s. It was considered necessary to a fundamental understanding of English, the history and writings of Western Civilization, and the understanding of Romance languages.

Regents Academy teaches Latin, therefore, for two major reasons:

  1. Latin is not a “dead language” but rather a language that lives on in almost all major western languages, including English. Training in Latin not only gives the student a better understanding of the roots of English vocabulary (especially in the scientific and medicinal fields), it also lays the foundation for learning other Latin-based languages (e.g., Spanish).
  2. Learning the grammar of Latin reinforces the student’s understanding of the reasons for, and the use of, the parts of speech being taught in our traditional English class work, e.g. plurals, nouns, verbs, prepositions, direct objects, tenses, etc.

Our Latin Program consists of the following basic objectives:

  • Third Grade (1st Year): Basic vocabulary, declensions, conjugations, simple grammar, and sentence patterns
  • Fourth Grade (2nd Year): More vocabulary, further declensions, chants of endings
  • Fifth Grade (3rd Year): More vocabulary, beginning grammar work, further verbs, simple sentences
  • Sixth Grade (4th Year): More vocabulary, foundational translation work, key grammar
  • Seventh Grade (5th Year): Translation work, grammar, writing of sentences, stories, classical background
  • Eighth Grade (6th Year): Completing complex grammar, translations work, idioms, vocabulary
  • Ninth Grade (7th Year): Translating original texts, understand setting, context and complex grammar