I think this response [immediately below this entry] cuts to the core of the dilemma for communicative vs grammar teachers. Yes, I know, we all try to combine them to some degree but there really is a huge gap.
If your students stay with you four years and read and hear lots and lots of Latin, they will know that -iunt goes with aud- and certain other verbs and -unt with others, etc. But the teacher concerned about their students getting a teacher who expects them to categorize the verbs and to be able to select the ending by an algorithm, it seems so much better just to go over the conjugation paradigms and teach the formulas.
My only point is that if you do teach paradigms, don’t expect learners to use them for communication. There’s nothing wrong with teaching grammar aka patterns, paradigms, structures, as long as you have the time for it.
And don’t forget, if you test on forms, your students will learn forms and not the language.
” …and before you know it (c. 6), 3rd -io verbs are added to the mix. But what’s the problem? It really doesn’t matter what conjugation a verb belongs to — does the sentence make sense? Can you tell whether one person is doing the falling/listening (cadit, audit) or more than one person (cadunt/audiunt)? At this point, the labels just get in the way. Keep the Latin words in front of the students; correct them if they write or say cadiunt* or audunt*, but don’t fuss over it. You can give them the inside scoop on stems and paradigms later, after they’ve had plenty of reading experience to draw on.
> It is quite a cultural leap to go from “here are the rules, generate some forms, and if you’re good we’ll do some reading for dessert” to “well, what’s this story about? what do we have here?” And the grammar sections in Oxford sometimes don’t help. After a while, I learned to tell myself that there’s a reason that the grammar is in the back of the book — it’s there as a fall-back, a reference, and teachers are free to present as much or as little of the grammar as they wish. There will be time later to put it all together for the students; for now, keep them reading, keep recycling the vocabulary and sentence patterns. Downplay the categories, foreground the text.
> I can appreciate that it is frustrating for you, after years of LFA, especially if the change in approach wasn’t your idea. Oxford is going to make you challenge some of your assumptions — for instance, the assumption that students need to know what the stem of a verb is (did Romans know?). I had to go through something like a Conversion Experience to get from my Jenney background to the Oxford teacher I was at the end of my career — but, boy, am I glad that my change was in that direction.”
> Original post:
>> I have a question for anyone who may use the Oxford series.
>> We just finished ch 3 where all 4 conjugation are thrown at the students. The text presents verbs in the 3rd person singular and no infinitive. How are the students to know how 3rd conjugation is different from the fourth when they see both present forms end in -it (e.g. regit and audit)? The book even says that the stem of the 3rd conjugation is different from that of the fourth because its stem ends in a consonant. How can they know what the stem will look like if the book doesnt give them infinitives?
>> In ch 4, the text says to add -nt to make them 3rd person plural. I’m just at a loss. The students will see that both end in -it in the 3rd person singular, but one goes to -unt in the plural and the other
>> goes to -iunt. Since infinitives are not presented, how do they understand the differences. How can they understand the stem? Having taught LFA for a number of years, I am completely frustrated by this method. If anyone has any ideas, Id be very grateful.