If you are interested in working to improve your Latin language skills, Varsity Tutors can help by connecting you with skilled Latin tutors. Whether you're studying Latin in high school or college, learning a new language can be a challenge. If your goal is to read and write Latin fluently, it can be tricky to achieve with the typical instructional methodology of meeting with a class a few hours each week. For many students, it's important to look for other language resources to master a new language.
Learning any foreign language can help students improve their English skills, but this is especially true for those who learn Latin. As much as 50 percent of words used in English were derived from Latin origins. Studying Latin provides greater insight into common prefixes, suffixes, and root words used in English. Learning Latin can also help you increase your English vocabulary and grammar skills. A foundation in Latin can also make it easier to learn other Romance Languages that are derived from Latin, including Spanish, French, Romanian, Portuguese, and Italian.
What is Latin?
You might have been told that Latin is a dead language. This is technically true because it is no longer the native language of any country or culture. However, it is not an extinct language because it is still used widely in written form. It is both a liturgical and classical language. Liturgical languages are those languages that are used in religious practices. Classical languages are those languages with a significant collection of ancient literature. Other examples of liturgical and classical languages include Sanskrit, classical Arabic, Biblical Hebrew, Greek, and Classical Chinese. By learning to read Latin, you have increased access to literature, historical documents, and research materials from around the world.
Latin is an Indo-European language that originated with the people of the lower Tiber River. Latin has been spoken since around 753 BC and began playing a significant role in the recording of human history around 100 BC. It remained the primary language for Western academia until the 1900s and may still be required for students who wish to pursue degrees in classical studies, history, philosophy, law, and theology.
What skills can Latin tutoring help me learn?
Learning any new language can be challenging for many reasons. With other subjects that are taught in your native language, you already have a solid foundation in how the new skill will be taught simply by virtue of it being taught in a language you already understand. When you learn a new language, you have to learn the rules of that language before you can begin to study it in depth. Fortunately, Latin tutors can help you work through this process.
Learning a classical language is much different from learning a language that is still spoken today. It is impossible to use many of the tricks and tools other language learners take for granted, such as watching movies or television shows in the new language with English subtitles. However, this also means there aren't people around who can tell you definitively that you're mispronouncing words.
Latin tutors can help you with any aspect of your Latin language studies. Whether you are taking Latin as a foreign language or you need help deciphering the language as part of your studies in a related field, studying with a skilled private Latin instructor can help you work on developing your skills.
The rules of grammar and the basic structure of Latin may seem simultaneously familiar and frustratingly foreign for students. As mentioned previously, much of modern English is derived from Latin, so it is likely you will encounter prefixes, suffixes, and root words you're familiar with. However, pronunciation and many of the rules of grammar will be unfamiliar.
For example, there are seven noun cases in Latin and only three in modern English. These cases include vocative, genitive, albative, nominative, accusative, dative, and locative. Nouns can further be modified, or declined, by how they are used in a sentence. There are five ways this can be done, and each has a unique ending. Once a noun has been declined, it will have a total of twelve forms; two for each case other than locative, which is omitted.
Verbs are similarly challenging. Conjugation is the process of changing a verb in Latin. When this is done, there are six forms of the verb. An additional five factors can further change a verb; number, voice, tense, mood, and person. In total, each verb has 120 possible forms.
Some of the specific topics you may cover as part of your language studies include Latin grammar, syntax, verb conjugations, noun cases, declension nouns, personal pronouns, reading, writing, pronunciation, vocabulary, verbs, active and passive voice verbs, demonstratives, relative pronouns, and indicative, imperative, and subjunctive moods.
Latin tutors can also help you prepare for upcoming exams. Whether you have an AP Latin final approaching or you need help preparing for your Latin IV final, working with a professional instructor can help you maximize your test preparation efforts.
If all of the possible things a private Latin instructor can help you with have your head spinning, take this into consideration; the information above is only an overview of the immensity of learning Latin. Happily, when you work with a Latin tutor, you can focus on the specific topics, skills, and concepts you need to review.
How is working with a Latin tutor different from taking a class?
Taking a traditional Latin class is very different from working with a Latin tutor. The most significant difference is in the amount of personalized instruction that is available to you when you work with a private instructor. Classroom teachers must follow the curriculum outline of their class if they are to cover all relevant material before the course ends. They tend to deviate very little in the delivery method or content from one semester to the next. Unfortunately, the pace and instructional style of the teacher may not match your academic needs or learning style.
When you work with a private instructor, they can take the time to get to know you personally. They may make an effort to discover your learning style, academic strengths and weaknesses, language learning goals, and even areas of interest outside of school. This information can be used to create a custom learning plan that focuses on providing you with the knowledge and academic support you specifically need.
As your skills and goals change, your language sessions can pivot and change with you. When you are working with a private instructor, you are free to move from one topic to another based on your personal learning needs. This is something that is impossible in a typical classroom setting.
In a classroom, your teacher must focus on delivering the lessons, answering questions from many different students, and oversee any group or individual work that has been assigned. When you are working with a private instructor, you have their full attention. You can ask questions as they arise and receive real-time feedback from your private instructor.
Finally, there is a difference in scheduling. When you take a class, you are limited to a few narrow windows of instructional time. When you work with a personal Latin instructor, you can schedule your sessions throughout the week or on weekends during the morning, afternoon, or evening hours.
How can I get started with Latin tutoring?
There are two options for personal Latin tutoring; in person and online. Many people initially believe the only way to receive personalized instruction is if they are in the same physical location as their instructor. Of course, this used to be true, and it was difficult to find a private instructor to work with. It is also why private tuition was so costly. Today you can just as easily work with a highly qualified personal Latin instructor from anywhere in the country.
When you work with a personal instructor remotely, you will meet with them in a secure online learning environment using our Live Learning Platform. You will log in with your digital device using a reliable internet connection and be able to see and hear your instructor as if they were sitting across the table from you.
No matter which of the meeting options you choose, you will receive the same academic benefits associated with private instruction, including face-to-face interaction. The most significant difference between the two options is in their scheduling flexibility. It can be difficult to find private Latin instructors in some areas with sufficient availability for the students who wish to work with them. By working with instructors online, you increase your pool of candidates. Since instructors are located across time zones, it can be easier to find a skilled Latin instructor to work with even during popular session times such as just before or after school.
Varsity Tutors makes it easy to get started with Latin tutoring whether you want to work with a personal instructor in person or virtually. Contact Varsity Tutors today to get started now.