chris629 wrote:So starting with a modern language rather then a foreign language? What would those be? I thought about starting latin with my 7 yr old next year in 2nd grade.
Studying Foreign Languages can fall into 2 very broad categories: Modern, and "ancient"
Modern would be anything as it is currently spoken in daily use in the world. Spanish, French, Russian, Chinese (and there are various dialects of that), German, Avar, Nenets, Farsi and a whole bunch of things. But usually people study the big ones: English, Spanish, French, German and so forth.
Ancients: "biblical greek" (which is not what is spoken in modern day Greece), Latin (no longer really spoken as a language.) maybe a few other "ancient" things out there of course, but those are the biggies in homeschool and classical ed circles. Ancient Hebrew, modern Hebrew?
My family has chosen to not do Latin and/or Greek as a full study language. We do "roots approach" instead.
our story of which languages and when.....
When they were younger, we did intro to foreign languages in very casual ways. Children's songs on audio CD, tv subtitles/audio tracks. stuff like that. Also, back a long long long time ago Rosetta Stone version 2 had a demo disk with about 30 language options. We played with those. It came into help when we were at the library in our old city. Plenty of international graduate level students attended the university and some brought their young families with them. It was nice to know a few smiles and hellos in several modern languages. I can remember the looks on the women's faces trying to navigate in a strange culture with their children and checking out books. My children were never scared to try to say hello. Sometimes my children mixed up a Korean with a Japanese or Chinese person, but it never mattered because we were being welcoming.
Originally doing years of "intro to foreign languages" was to buy us time to select between Spanish (which we weren't interested in, but see the importance of it), and/or French (husband has a minor in it in college). I took French in high school and Italian in college. However, plans change......
Then, as my oldest daughter hit around 5th grade, she told us one day "I want to study Russian because I just read in book basket that Catherine the Great had to learn it."
sigh.... so Russian for her. God opened huge paths for all of that. I don't have the energy right now to tell all of that. Again, one story involved just helping a few immigrants who were struggling with a few words in English. I just love how Russian moms hug us in public. ok, I have time for quick story..... I was picking up medicines at local walgreens and the cashier forgot a few English words. We just smiled and said in Russian (because her accent was so obvious and her name tag was printed in our alphabet and Cyrillic) a few words of greeting and name exchanges and smiles. It made her day. And then, at library, this older woman was struggling carrying her bags of books to donate to the book sale. she calls from across the parking lots "You 2 children, help carry" (I'm a very short adult standing with my oldest who is taller). Kate, my oldest, answers her in Russian that Yes, we will help you." We shared in English why we study Russian and got a big warm hug from this lady.
modern language bridge cultures and give us time to talk about loving God.
Middle gal -- reads book basket and prays for people groups while studying MFW.... Mommy, I want to learn Chinese so I can tell the Chinese Muslims that Jesus really loves them. Chinese for her - and it fits. She so clicks with the whole picture language.
Youngest (age 8 ) - Dora the Explorer in Espanol! Calliou in Francois, Madeline - in french subtitles/audio track of course. Oh yeah, I forgot, she has language delays in English due to autism.
then, of all things, my husband and oldest daughter have to take a "crash course" from now until mid June in Spanish in order to be able to at least follow some directions while on a church youth group missions project this summer in Mexico city suburb.
I know we "should" fork over the money for RS Spanish, but I thought we'd try another product (due to arrive from Rainbow Resource today...) that claims it will help with our goals of quick acquisition for missions. (The Easy Spanish or something like that), and we plan to have a friend of ours talk on the phone to at least have some practice before the trip.
We have never needed yet to do Latin as a full study language. My husband holds a phd in chemistry and never needed it. His brother is an attorney and never needed Latin as a full course either. They learned the vocab important to their occupations. We do roots for the vocabulary. We do English grammar with English grammar. We do logic in Math. So lots of homeschoolers do full Latin study. That's ok, nothing bad.
David Hazell has a workshop on Classical Approaches in 21st century. check out that part of the website.
erin.kate wrote: My oldest will be in second, Adv, and my middle two will be in K, though one of them will have just arrived home to us from Ethiopia, so it would be more for the music and rhythm than anything right now.
I wonder out loud..... Perhaps you should just do English when your child arrives from Ethiopia? That will be a foreign language for him. RS does come in US English. I'm not seeing a lot of benefits to him learning Latin even in music and rhythm right now. Maybe Spanish for other children, and even let them learn some of their new sibling's native tongue as well?
Blessings to each family as you follow the leading that God has planned for you to speak in more than just English.