Dr. Seussís Guide to Latin Grammar
Barrington High School
One of the Latin teacherís toughest challenges
is how to encourage students to undertake frequently needed grammar
practice sessions and grammar reviews.
Most textbooks provide exercises or reading selections but these
are quickly exhausted. Many
supplemental books also provide exercises but they are of the same type
as those in the textbook. Thus
teachers are left searching for a new and different way to practice a
concept or review with students Ė a way that will motivate and entice
students to enjoy what is usually viewed as a dull chore.
One solution to this perennial problem can be
found in the newly available neo-Latin translations of popular,
nostalgic childrenís books such as Arbor
Alma, Cattus Petasatus, Quo Modo Invidiosulus Nomine Grinchus Christi
Natalem Abrogaverit, Ferdinandus Taurus, Regulus Vel Pueri Soli Sapiunt and
even the venerable Winnie Ille Pu.
Any of these books can
be used with the methods I will describe in this presentation but my
examples will be taken from Dr. Seussís Cat
in the Hat, translated into Latin by Terence and Jennifer Tunberg.
Students of all ages whether elementary,
middle/high school or college students love the whimsical qualities of
Dr. Seussís tales and remember the story from their childhood with
fondness. Thus the students
do not necessarily have to be able to read every line of Cattus
Petasatus to practice a selected grammatical item such as
participles. They can
concentrate on the participles while remembering the plot of the book
from childhood or refresh their memory by a glancing at the wonderful
illustrations. In this
way, the review of a grammar topic can be entertaining (mirabile
dictu) while providing them with the necessary practice needed to
master the selected aspect of Latin grammar.
This presentation will identify which grammatical topics are
encountered frequently enough in Cattus
Petasatus to enable a review or a practice session to be done
and will show different methods of review using examples from the text