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How do you/did you work with LL?

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How do you/did you work with LL?

Postby Banana tree » Fri Aug 22, 2008 1:26 pm

Like the topic said - how did you or how do you work with Lingua Latina? I do one chapter in approximately five days. The first day I just read the chapter one time and try to analyse the grammar thoroughly, but if it is something I really don't understand, I let it be. On day two I read the chapter two times, since I already have a pretty good understanding of the text I can read it faster and focus on the hard bits. The third day I read it two times again and do the pensa. The fourth day I do exactly what I did the third day and then on the fifth day I read the chapter one more time and do the exercita for that chapter. I seem get the chapter by then.

Now I'm curious to hear how you do. :) And perhaps you have some tip to share with you. My tip is simply to not worry and just keep reading.
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Re: How do you/did you work with LL?

Postby Boban » Fri Aug 22, 2008 2:51 pm

Banana tree wrote:Like the topic said - how did you or how do you work with Lingua Latina? I do one chapter in approximately five days. The first day I just read the chapter one time and try to analyse the grammar thoroughly, but if it is something I really don't understand, I let it be. On day two I read the chapter two times, since I already have a pretty good understanding of the text I can read it faster and focus on the hard bits. The third day I read it two times again and do the pensa. The fourth day I do exactly what I did the third day and then on the fifth day I read the chapter one more time and do the exercita for that chapter. I seem get the chapter by then.

Now I'm curious to hear how you do. :) And perhaps you have some tip to share with you. My tip is simply to not worry and just keep reading.


I do every day one chapter, including reading text (about 10 sentences), translating that text, learning morfology and syntax and doing homework, all in couple of hours. Also at the end I read couple of latin quotes. Sub voce, hard work!
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Postby Bretonus » Fri Aug 22, 2008 2:54 pm

I read it, and if I miss the odd thing the first time I don't care. I find by the time I do the exercises I have already read the following two chapters. For me it's just easier to read and read again than stressing over the grammar of each chapter as it comes to me, plus I find I hold onto the information better.

Some chapters seem to take little time and effort, such as XVII-XIX, and others, like XVI, XXXIII and (in Roma Aeterna) XXXVII, and I take sometimes a week longer than I would like to fully comprehend them.
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Postby MarcusE » Fri Aug 22, 2008 5:36 pm

I'm on chapter 15 and so far I'm just reading and rereading, keeping it enjoyable, no "work". I also read and reread the separate stories in the Colloquia Personarum and the free downloadable Fabulae as I go through the book and I also casually review the grammar sections at the ends of the chapters or in in the separate grammar outline book that goes with the series as needed. But I'm just trying to read for enjoyment and the satisfaction of directly understanding the latin without going through English.

I'm actually conducting a little experiment on myself. I want to see how much latin reading ability I can acquire without doing any "work"; e.g. sweating through grammar translations exercises and vocab flash cards and memorizing declension tables. I want to avoid that as long as possible. It helps that all of my latin time has been while lying in bed at night and sitting on the potty in the morning (hey, it beats reading People magazine!). If modern language acquistion theory is correct (see Krashen) than formal grammar study is not needed at all for any language for acquisition to take place as long as the supply of comprehensible input is sufficient and sustained. So I'm just going to keep things light and enjoyable and see where it takes me.

I've looked at the Pensum in LL and I will say that the nice thing about them is that they aren't grammar exercises in the traditional sense of providing you with a little puzzle to decode (see Wheelock) but more of a check of how much you actually retained from the chapter. If you don't do so well on them the first time around, I don't believe (for whatever it's worth) that one should "study" the grammar from the chapter in response. By that I mean do "work" with charts and the flash cards and the rote memorization of conjugation endings and all that. By all means, read the grammar explanations as many times as you need - in both the book and the Doceo or any other reference book, but the best thing (IMHO) is just to reread the chapter a few more times. It'll stick in time. And then when you do the Pensum you'll know the right answer or the right ending for the word because it will look and feel right not because you can conjure up an image of the declension or conjugation table in your mind. That's true acquisition.

I may work my way through the Pensum later on for fun at some point but I'm going to put that off as long as possible.

Anyway, that's my approach and it's coming along very nicely so far and I'm thoroughly enjoying the process.

Lingua Latina really is as good as people say.

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Postby Stoic » Sun Aug 24, 2008 4:22 pm

I've tried various ways of working with LL. I recall one person here recommending writing (or typing) out the entire text, as a way of absorbing the grammar and vocabulary.

There's something to this, and I did it for a while. But I soon found that it was so tedious at times that I found excuses to avoid studying LL altogether, so I've gone back to reading, and re-reading, and re-re-reading the texts over and over. i also use the College Companion and do all the exercises.

I've become a great believer in LL, especially after having been through Wheelock (twice) and finding that reading Latin isn't the same as being able to translate the specific phrases found there.
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Postby svaens » Mon Aug 25, 2008 6:20 am

I have actually just started... so this is interesting to read, just what you others do!

I have been so far reading, as far as a chapter, then going back and reading again, and for each new example of latin grammar rules, I write it down in my little exercise book. When I don't understand, I pick up my copy of Wheellock to find out just what is going on. When Wheellock is giving me head-pains, I come here. Although, Today I am just here because I enjoy reading from the forum!

There is something in what you stoic, and others say about keeping it simple. I also find now, that, As I have found a word I didn't understand, and didn't realize from the context, so I have stopped reading, waiting until I had the chance to go home and get out my dictionary, or Wheellock..
I am in the mindset that I need to understand everything... before moving on.
But to hear that you guys just march on..... and what? You eventually figure it out? Perhaps I should be doing that too. Then I will get through it much faster.
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Postby Stoic » Mon Aug 25, 2008 12:09 pm

I too have suffered from that mindset that insists that one master each word, sentence, paragraph, lesson, etc., before moving on to the next. This may be important in some kinds of learning, but if one's goal is to learn to read Latin, I think LL's advice — i.e., that if one sentence is opaque, the next sentence might make it all clear. Reading is, of course, deeply contextual.

My younger daughter is a professional translator, and she agrees completely, insisting not only that "reading" and "translating" are very different activities, but that they actually involve different parts of the brain. LL is all about reading, not translating, Latin. So it's helpful to simply pick up LL and read, in a relaxed and almost playful manner, puzzling over different constructions as they occur, knowing that one can return to them later, again and again. What has been really useful for me is to return to the text again and again, seeing new things each time, not translating but reading for understanding and, as you say, keeping it simple.
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Postby Alex Sheremet » Wed Aug 27, 2008 4:21 am

I started at 2 chapters a week, then, around Ch. 25 or so, slowed down to 1. I typically try to memorize all the vocabulary (English to Latin, Latin to English), absorb (and practice) the grammar, read the chapter twice, as well as write out about 30 or 35 semi-continuous English sentences based on the text, then translate it all into Latin in my mind. In this way, I have a small notebook full of stuff to practice translating into Latin, which is great for vocabulary and quick, spontaneous, and active understanding.

It's one thing to answer questions in Latin, re-using the vocabulary and structures already provided in the question.. it's much more difficult to freely generate Latin, without relying on the question's structures, or anything other than your memory.
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Postby loqu » Wed Sep 03, 2008 4:15 pm

I'm currently reading and making the exercises at a rhythm rather fast, since I had some knowledge of Latin anyway. I have already reached chapter VI in a couple of days without much trouble because I already know most of the declination endings and much of the conjugation; I have taken up LLPSI because I want to learn vocabulary and to be able to get some fluency and/or think in Latin, both abilities which I didn't acquire while studying Latin "the traditional way".

I'll see how my rhythm gets when I get further on the book, but I have been enjoying it very much so far. I have already found myself putting the verb in the end of the sentence while thinking in Spanish unconsciously, which I believe is a good first step!
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Postby Abstractus » Mon Sep 08, 2008 2:24 pm

Nice to see so many people using LL.

I am currently in the middle of second volume, and so far I try to avoid any translating, except occasional check of particularly difficult words in the dictionary. I think translating to English and using English-Latin dictionary is a big mistake, which ultimately delays achieving fluency.

Of course, mental translation is unavoidable, and the brain is trying to do it all the time. The whole point, however, is to wane yourself from that habit as soon as possible. English is not my native language, and when I was learning English, I learned one important truth: if you are still translating in your mind, you do not know the language, period.

Reading foreign language by mentally translating is like watching a mountain landscape through a keyhole :-) The most interesting, beautiful and rewarding aspect of knowing a foreign language is the fact that once you achieve true fluency, you have access to untranslatable features of that language.

Coming back to LL: I found that the second volume is so much harder than the first one. I even think that the transition from adapted to unaltered Livy is done a bit to to fast. I wish the author used some simpler texts at first instead of Vergil/Livy/Ovid (perhaps some medieval latin?). Nevertheless, after working through half of vol. 2 I can see first signs of success: when I now read simpler text, such as, for example, Vulgate NT, I can read most passages without mental translation, and it feels soooo great :-)
I would love to be able to read Aeneid the same way, but I am still very far from this.
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