EFRU - Must we do the 2nd year?

Including getting a later start using "English From The Roots Up" or "God & the History of Art"
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cbollin

EFRU - Must we do the 2nd year?

Unread post by cbollin » Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:41 pm

peavey wrote:Can anyone convince me of the need for learning the Latin roots in English in the Roots Up? I thought I'd come to this board to allow anyone to tell me why we need it. We did the Greek last year, and did enjoy it. However, having 2 a week PLUS everything else is just a bit too much. I just CANNOT fit everything from MFW in.

We already do not do any of the music, art, and for the time I am dropping Spanish. I dropped Math Drill for my eldest (6th) as well. I truly appreciate the wisdom I always receive from the people on this board!
Kristy
I think learning some Latin roots is important for vocabulary building and other reasons. So, instead of trying to convince you that's it is good, I'm thinking of looking at ways to help your day and week over all. I think of the root words as part of the 'required" stuff since it is 3 R's. things from deluxe, I tend to treat as optional.

It is ok to do just one per week for a while if needed.

It is ok to trim down the assignment if needed:
for example: what if you just made the cards with root word and definition and wrote some examples of words. And maybe on the next day did one good sentence with one good definition?

That sort of thing can be done as "independent" work by the students while you work with one kid on language arts or math. Even my very average 5th grader only seems to take 5 minutes on those cards.

Some people also make the cards ahead of time for several weeks via word processing or just getting the cards ready and having one set per family or something. I'd look for ways to trim it back but not do away with it.


The other question that pops in my mind is: how much time is spent on math and language arts with what you are using? I know my days have gone well with using the products that MFW recommends for that. I know I've dropped art from time to time. The music we do in the van while driving around (but not this year so far..... strange...)


I do think it is important to do some vocabulary building, so maybe finding some ways to tweak your schedule or something might be helpful? just one opinion.

-crystal

Julie in MN
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by Julie in MN » Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:46 pm

Okay, I was typing when Crystal was, and here's another voice...

Hi Kristy,
I think you could skip the Latin roots, if needed. They used to be in the "Deluxe" program, so were semi-optional anyways. Your kids already have the benefit of being exposed to the fact that words are often built on common roots, so that's good.

I will say that although RTR has 2 roots, it does not have a dictionary day and so it won't really take "twice" as much time to do two roots instead of one.

Underneath all of that, I am curious what exactly is eating up your day. I wonder if there are other areas folks could help with?

But as far as skipping the roots, you'd miss some things -- a few cool connections to the curriculum, the idea that roots come from different languages with different spellings, and general opportunities to build vocabulary. But IMHO you'd probably be fine.

Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
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Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
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dhudson
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by dhudson » Tue Aug 25, 2009 2:38 pm

How many children and what ages and what other curriculum are you using? We might be able to help streamline... How many hours a day are you in school? My 4th graders are at a about 4.5 and my 7th grader at 5.5 or so.

I am of the opinion that the Latin roots are important because it teaches vocabulary. My son has been able to dramatically increase his understanding of words because he has studied the roots. It also helps with spelling. Are the kids doing another vocabulary program? If so then I wouldn't worry about it or if they are learning Latin or Greek in some other way. Your 6th grader can definitely do this independently.
God Bless,
Dawn
http://www.shiningexamples.blogspot.com
blessed Mom of three - 16, 13 & 13
happy user of MFW since 2002

HSmommi2mine
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by HSmommi2mine » Tue Aug 25, 2009 3:12 pm

You could just go over them orally and then drill with the flash cards (I bought just the cards, not the book) w/out doing all of the copying exc.

Of course I am one of those people that thinks that roots are not enough and so my kids learn Latin.

Beyond that, set your priorities, do the most important things first and let the rest of it slide if you don't get to it. For us the core of our program is Latin, math, grammar and writing. These must be done without fail. History and science come next but they can be moved if necessary. We love projects and art but if we don't get to them it's not the end of the world.
~Christina

Wife to my favorite guy
Mom to 3 great kids

peavey
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by peavey » Tue Aug 25, 2009 6:51 pm

Thanks to you all for your replies. I am still not convinced WHY Latin is so important. Greek, I understood - it helps in Bible study. Why Latin? Is it really going to make THAT much of a difference in the understanding of word meanings?

We do not use ILL (going to re-try PLL with my 2nd grader dd - quit after 2 years with my first ds). However, we do use Total Language Plus (reading, comprehension, grammar, spelling, vocab) with the 3 boys (6th & two 4th graders). We also use MUS. We also spend almost an hour each day in prayer, Bible memorization (other than MFW stuff) & Bible Quizzing (church program). Those I am not willing to cut at all. On top of that, they are required to read their own Bible for 15 min/day. Those are the things I do above & beyond MFW.

Otherwise, I am sure to do all the Bible, History, Science, Writing Strands, Read-alouds, Letter Writing, Independent reading (15 min/day), math drill (3 youngest), & I read aloud to them books of their choosing for their Book Basket time while they eat lunch. I don't think I am forgetting anything............ I have given up Art, Music, Spanish, Typing, Independent Book Basket.

For ERU, I present the info, writing it on the marker board & they copy to their notecards. I have them write 3 words & definitions for each root, and I usually choose the easy/short ones. (Youngest only has to write the words). That alone takes about 30 minutes - now twice a week. The sentence writing (they type them) takes each kid 10-15 minutes independent time plus about 10 minutes with Mom revising & correcting - twice a week. Writing comes hard at this house. For the Friday test, I have them match up the words/definitions (from flashcards they made the introduction day) that I have pre-mixed. I know it may not seem like much time committment, but even just the stress of the crazy, sad sentences they write & trying to gently use them as a teaching tool would be nice to leave out. =)

So, if that gives you a better glimpse of our days/weeks, maybe you have more suggestions? I just know that the first week went so amazing - our best first week ever. Of course, we only did 1/2 to 2/3 of a "normal schedule." The second week, when I tried adding more, the week went terribly. We just have to be so SUPER diligent about moving quickly from each subject to the next in order to get done by 3:00 (starting at 8:00). I just feel like I can't do it all & still maintain my sanity.

Thanks for listening & your concern,
Kristy

cbollin

Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by cbollin » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:26 pm

If you're using Total Language Plus , then drop extra vocabulary if it adds too much to your day.

A lot of English came from Latin roots. so Latin can help with understanding the meaning of words in English, as well as helping with spelling in English.... and that's why we study the roots (or a full program as some do).

so you can either drop some of the vocab worksheets in TLP
or drop Latin.

it's your choice for which one suits your educational goals.

-crystal

HSmommi2mine
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by HSmommi2mine » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:37 pm

Latin is important as far as vocabulary goes because more than 60% of English is derived from Latin. That said, if you are covering vocabulary in another program, don't bother with EFRU. You invest way more time and effort into it than I ever did. If you wanted to use EFRU I would suggest going over the derivatives out loud and then just reviewing the roots you have learned in a drill type format every couple of days. I did this and spent about 15 min. a week with EFRU.
~Christina

Wife to my favorite guy
Mom to 3 great kids

4Truth
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by 4Truth » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:22 am

The way we do EFTRU:

I have both the book and the cards. I don't make the cards. I had bought the cards on a swap board a long time ago and already had them when we started MFW, so that was a blessing to me.

On the day a new root is assigned, one dd uses the book to copy from, and the other dd uses the cards. Oldest copies all the sample words and writes one sentence. Fifth grader copies three of the sample words and writes one sentence. This takes about 10 minutes at most.

In between new assignments, as part of our Bible and memory work time together, we use the cards to drill all the roots they've learned so far. Sometimes I'll mix them up. Sometimes we do the whole set (all learned so far) and sometimes I'll just pick the most recent ones. We also recite them sometimes while we're out for a walk.

I believe that at least learning the root words (if not a full Latin course) is valuable to good spelling and vocabulary. In fact, most spelling programs will include a year of Latin and Greek roots sometime during middle school, but to me, doing them only as part of a one-year spelling course isn't sufficient. Learning them in context of the history that we're studying helps us to understand where they come from and how they got into the English language, as well as being able to USE them in context of writing and conversation. And I'm firmly convinced that root words are what helped me to be such a good speller. ;) My girls are turning out to be pretty good spellers, too.

I don't take a real strong position on full Latin, but I do believe in taking the time to learn the root words. That said, I agree that you're going to have to drop (or rearrange or streamline) something. You've got a long school day!

We also do Word Roots on the computer for fun. This has helped reinforce everything we've learned in EFTRU.
Donna, with two MFW graduates and the "baby" in 11th grade! %| Using MFW since 2004.

TurnOurHearts

Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by TurnOurHearts » Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:53 pm

Just a piece of my perspective for you. :)

Learning Latin/Greeks ROOTS take a child (or adult!) from knowledge to understanding. Many of us know HOW to spell words, but we don't understand WHY they're built the way they are. When we give our children an opportunity to move from simple knowledge to understanding, we give them a gift they can carry throughout life.

That said, there have been seasons of my life that have been great seasons of knowledge-gathering. There have been other seasons that have brought greater understanding and/or wisdom. They don't always happen at the same time. Sometimes life dictates how deeply we can dive. As you search the areas you want to delve with your children, God can show you what to do to be where He wants you. :)

peavey
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by peavey » Thu Aug 27, 2009 2:18 pm

Thanks again for the newly given advice!

I haven't completely decided, or felt led to go either way. However, I did decide to scale back on the amount of work involved with it. That went better yesterday & today. You all gave me some great ideas on how to keep the Latin but just make it less involved.

I'm still not convinced on how, exactly, learning the roots helps with spelling.........seems that although the root is spelled one way, the actual word that is derived from it can use any number of letter combinations from that root. I was never taught Latin growing up, though.

I am just really questioning the "whys" of what we are doing. If it doesn't have a clear purpose, then I am most willing to drop it. Because I didn't understand the purpose of Latin, I was leaning towards letting it go. That is why I came here. I don't want to do something "just because the curriculum says to." I was hoping someone would be able give me the reasoning. I suppose I could have called the office & asked someone directly - e-mailing is so much easier in my life than phone calls right now! =)

Thanks again for your time & concern - I appreciate it!

Kristy

Julie in MN
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by Julie in MN » Thu Aug 27, 2009 2:35 pm

peavey wrote:I'm still not convinced on how, exactly, learning the roots helps with spelling.........seems that although the root is spelled one way, the actual word that is derived from it can use any number of letter combinations from that root.
Hi Kristy,
Just about this part...

Knowing the roots can help a child "see" the root within the word. I know the "connecting letters" are sometimes changed up, but several of the patterns remain the same.

They will see the root "photo" or "phobia" in a word, understand what Greek meaning the word probably includes, but they also won't need to spell out each sound or wonder whether to use "f" or "ph." Same for "auto" verses "otto." If they keep going with it, they'll learn the difference between words that start with "hist" and "hyst."

Your kids may notice this year that Latin does not include the "k" that was popular in Greek, so the spelling on these roots will use "c" instead.

They may also pick up the way that roots do not follow ordinary spelling rules, but instead stay together as a unit. For instance, when you start a word with "chron," you do not have to "protect" the short /o/ sound by doubling the "n" but just tack "chron" onto the rest of the word.

More than you wanted to know?!
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
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peavey
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Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by peavey » Thu Aug 27, 2009 6:26 pm

Thanks, Julie, that does make sense!

MFW-Lucy

Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by MFW-Lucy » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:28 pm

Dear Kristy,

You have received many great thoughts and ideas about studying Latin roots. My Father's World considers this book to be an integral part of the years language arts, especially for those who have chosen to use the rest of our suggestions for language arts. Although other vocabulary will be part of lessons throughout Intermediate Language Lessons they do not replace this activity.

Learning the root itself is the goal not to memorize all of the vocabulary words that are associated with the root. Knowing some of those words will help to remember the root and so that is why it is important to learn some of the words. Knowing the roots helps children ( and adults) to be able to figure out the meaning of new words that use Greek and Latin roots as you come across them in everyday reading. The information provided in week 1 of Creation to Greeks or Rome to Reformation in the teaching notes is important to remember as you think through why you are doing this activity.

The Teacher's Manual will also emphasis that each child should work at his own pace or interest level. This activity should not take more than 10-15 minutes. If it is taking too long for your kids to do the activity consider limiting the number of derivations (vocabulary words for each root). You may even consider having your 4th and 6th grader work together on the sentences. If needed you could even talk through and come up with sentences together and then have them copy or type them. This does not need to become an editing session. The goal of writing the sentences is to help them use the word in a useful way that demonstrates they understand the meaning of the word(s). The 2nd grader will have the opportunity to do this study again when repeating RTR in 7th grade. You may want to just wait until then to have her do this activity.

Hopefully this will help as you think through some reasons why this activity was included in the program.

If you have other thoughts or questions, please let us know.

Lucy

peavey
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Joined: Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:00 am

Re: Need Convincing.........

Unread post by peavey » Fri Aug 28, 2009 1:20 pm

Lucy, thanks for your post! After reading people's comments, I did reduce the number of words they had to write on their cards and that made a difference. I'll keep the rest of your suggestions in mind as we progress next week & see what will work. I sure appreciate your time!

Kristy

Julie in MN
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Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Latin Roots w/4th grader

Unread post by Julie in MN » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:14 pm

4monkeyz wrote:So I have a 4th grade girl who during CtG really slowed down the whole process and was unhappy the entire time. I only had her write the root, definition and then two of the words below; later I had her illustrate the words. Now as we are gearing up for RtR, I'm dreading this part of school! Do I simply skip it with her? She will go back through it again at an older age. Or maybe do every other week? Less writing, more drawing. :~ I know I am the parent, I could make her, but it is a losing battle. Sigh. Ideas would be greatly appreciated!

On a side note, my ds asked to learn Koine/NT Greek this year, yikes! (he's 6th grade/11) That should be interesting. ;)
You have a few choices here.

If it looks like she will surely get to CTG again in 8th grade, then you might hold off and do the Latin roots that year, although 8th graders tend to be busier than 4th graders.

In cases where I really wanted my son to do something he loathed, I told him he had to learn the material but I was open to new ideas about how to learn it. Sometimes he became lazy and said he'd just do it my way. Other times, he came up with creative ideas using the Internet, PowerPoint, oral exams, and more.

Off the top of my head, I think the roots could be learned by...
- focusing on the games that are in the CTG manual around week 17, perhaps using premade cards,
- making notebook pages instead of cards, or
- using the marker board, maybe taking a photo to print.

There are some more creative ideas scattered in these threads:
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1928
notebook pages http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=5944
crossword puzzles & Quizlet & lift-the-flap http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=2302

By the way, you don't have dictionary day in RTR. There are more Latin words than Greek, so you go through them at a faster pace.

P.S.S. My son liked to make funny sentences. Maybe that would be more fun to write than boring definitions?!

Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

4monkeyz
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Re: Latin Roots w/4th grader

Unread post by 4monkeyz » Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:28 am

Thanks Julie! Those are excellent ideas! I did think maybe using a notebook page with the blank top/lines below might work - more space, less overwhelming? Plus lots of room for a picture. :)

On a side note - In high school do the kids work with any word roots or is that just in the cycle???
Andrea ~ Christ-Follower, Blessed Wife, Mama of 4
  • Adventures & First 2012
    ECC & K 2013
    CtG, First & K 2014
    RtR & First 2015
    American History detour
    Returning CtG 2019!

Julie in MN
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Re: Latin Roots w/4th grader

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:38 am

In AHL, kids learn the Greek alphabet. They learn where all those words like alpha & omega come from, plus some of the math words. But no word root focus that I recall.

Some of the science years, especially biology, will use a lot of word roots, though!
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

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