Latin is studied at Heritage from Year 5 onwards.
Latin is studied at Heritage from Year 5 onwards. It is great to have the opportunity to learn this language which is so foundational to our own and other languages at such an early age. However, If you are joining us in Year 6, 7 or 8 without having studied Latin before, don’t worry, the course is structured to enable you to pick it up easily.
The grammatical content of the syllabus roughly follows that of Common Entrance Levels 1-3 in a spiral structure adding new grammar whilst also covering the basics again each year so that by the end of the course grammatical content is very secure and those new to the subject have had ample chance to catch up.
While the grammatical content of the syllabus follows a spiral structure, the stories, that are at the very heart of the course, are always fresh. It was Charlotte Mason’s strong conviction that children should study living books which exposed them to the rich fabric of great stories from history, legend and myth told in a vivid and engaging way. Story is a powerful vehicle for learning and by following a theme for a term pupils get to enjoy the story unfolding bit by bit and reaching a climax. Such stories from the Classical World also open up fascinating areas for discussion, whether it is the morality of Odysseus, the love and tragedy of Dido or the cruelty and civilisation of the Romans.
The study of Latin and Classics as a whole in Years 5-8 is enlivened and enriched by trips to Verulamium, the Museum of Classical Archaeology and the British Museum.
Bellum – The Roman Army
Fabulae – Greek Myths
Alexander the Great
Dido & Aeneas
Caesar’s Invasions of Britain
Latin teaches you to think clearly and to communicate effectively. Pupils often remark that the vocabulary and grammar they study in Latin helps them to understand English better; and how the process of translation, of looking for just the right word or phrase, helps them express themselves more precisely in their own language. Universities and employers alike value the high level of analytical thought that Latin develops and the strong communication skills it imparts. More than this, of course, the study of Latin opens a window on the fascinating culture, literature and history of the Romans, one of the greatest civilizations the world has known.
In Years 9 and 10 pupils continue to work on their mastery of Latin grammar and syntax, drawing upon John Taylor’s Latin to GCSE course as well as other texts and materials. Regular vocabulary tests, exercises and translations build and increasing fluency in the language. From the second half of Year 10 pupils begin to study their set texts, drawn from original Latin prose and poetry, alongside their continuing language work. This is a real highlight of the course: studying some of the most sublime literature in the world in its original language is an immensely rich and rewarding experience.
We us the OCR exam board for Latin GCSE (J282)
Paper 1: Language (J282/01) (50% – examined)
Knowledge of the language is tested through unseen translation, comprehension and translation of short, simple sentences from English into Latin.
Paper 2: Prose Literature (J282/03) (25% – examined)
The texts for 2021 are drawn from Tacitus’ account of the alleged asassination of the popular scion of the imperial household, Germanicus Caesar, believed by many to have been arranged by Gnaeus Piso on the orders of the emperor Tiberius himself. We shall also study Pliny’s amusing account of the disreputable legacy-hunter Regulus.
Paper 3: Verse Literature (J282/05): (25% – examined)
Our set text for 2021 is drawn from Aeneid book II, Virgil’s tragic account of the Fall of Troy. The extracts that we will study describe the dramatic death of Priam in the heart of his own palace and the loss of Creusa, Aeneas’ wife, in the escape from the city, an event which Aeneas called ‘the cruellest thing I saw in all the sack of the city.’
Pupils progress from exploring a fascinating new alphabet to reading Aesop’s Fables, then stories from the Odyssey and the life of Alexander the Great, the wisdom of Socrates and a host of other stories from Greek myth and history. Pupils enjoy the opportunity to explore an ancient language, uncovering the roots of many technical English words in the process! Perhaps the greatest reward comes in the second year of the course with the opportunity to read some of the greatest literature of the ancient world.
We follow John Taylor’s Greek to GCSE course which enables pupils to progress independently at their own pace. Regular vocabulary tests, exercises, translations and feedback build an increasing fluency in the language. In their second year, pupils begin the study of their set texts, drawn from original Greek prose and poetry, alongside their continuing language work.
We us the OCR exam board for Classical Greek GCSE (J292)
Paper 1: Language (J292/01) (50% – examined)
Knowledge of the language is tested through unseen translation, comprehension and translation of short, simple sentences into Greek.
Paper 2: Prose Literature (J292/02): (25% – examined)
Set for examination in 2021 is Herodotus’ fascinating account of the Ethiopians and the Power of Custom. Herodotus wrote that his aim was that ‘human accomplishments might not be erased by time and that the great and marvellous deeds of Greek and barbarian alike might not be without their renown’ After 2500 years Herodotus remains the best of story-tellers and surprisingly modern in his fascination with and respect for cultures and customs other than his own.
Paper 3: Verse Literature (J292/02): (25% – examined)
Set for examination in 2021 is the first part Iliad book III where the Greek and Trojan armies clash and Paris, berated by his brother Hector, challenges the Greeks to a duel – a challenge which Menelaus accepts. Homer’s epic, the Iliad, is a masterpiece of literature that has remained unsurpassed since it was first written.
GCSE Classical Greek is offered as an after school course. The aim is to complete the course in two years; this will require a significant amount of independent work. You can always try it out to see how it goes for a shorter period. A final decision on entry for the GCSE will be taken in January of the final year of the course.
Latin at Heritage – Themes