why study latin 2003

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  • Does Latin help your SATscores? The answer onceagain is a definitive YES!

    The mean Verbal SAT scores for2002 were:

    All students: 504LATIN: 666Spanish: 581French: 637German: 622

    But theres more to studying Latinthan SAT scores. . . .

    Why Study


    For more information about the value of the studyof Latin, including articles like the one included inthis brochure, please visit the website of the

    National Committee forLatin and Greek


    Test scores in elementaryschools have demonstratedthe value of earlylanguage training.

    Thousands of elementary studentsin big city schools benefit fromcourses in Latin roots of Englishwords. These courses also teachthem Roman culture and Greekmyths. Through songs, word gamesand lively oral participation, stu-dents come to know the buildingblocks of words and families towhich words belong.

    Students of diversenationalities benefitfrom the study of Latin.

    Hispanic students have an edge inlearning English, since 60% of En-glish words (90% of words over twosyllables) and 80% of Spanish wordscome from Latin. For Anglo, African-American, Hispanic or Asian stu-dents studying Latin translates intoa larger vocabulary, higher readingscores, better pronunciation, andincreased self-esteem. An ethnicallyneutral language and culture pro-vides a bridge to improving Englishfor all students. In addition, these

    students gain access to the main-stream culture of western civiliza-tion by studying the magnificentand many-sided world of Rome.

    Based on the article, Keys to Language and CulturalAwareness, by Conrad Barrett, PhD, ComparativeLiterature and Classics, California State University,Long Beach, California.

  • Latin Develops aPersons English.

    A persons reading, writing andspeaking of his or her own languageis improved by studying Latin. His orher vocabulary is enriched, grammaris sharpened, and a sense of organi-zation is instilled in him or her.

    Greek and Latin provide asolid foundation forthe acquisition of otherlanguages.

    Greek and Latin equip a person withthe strongest single foundation formastering Romance languages,

    modern inflected ones such asRussian and German, and evennon-related tongues like Arabic,Chinese, and Japanese. Working withLatin and Greek broadens a personsnotion of structures possible in lan-guages other than English. In addi-tion, Latin gives one a grip on about80% of the vocabulary of the Ro-

    mance languages French, Italian,Portuguese, Romanian, and Spanish.

    Reading, Writing, andTranslating Greek andLatin Sharpens the Mind.

    On account of their non-Englishword structure and sentence pat-terns, the classical languages have forcenturies stimulated such mentalqualities as being observant, accu-rate, analytic, and logical. Thus themind is developed in demanding andpractical ways. Classics majors arehired by firms that need personnelwho can define and identify prob-lems, think on their feet, and arriveat sound and creative solutions.

    The Civilizations of Greeceand Rome Link Us withCultures of 57 Nations onFour Continents.

    A background in the classical civili-zations makes Americans aware of

    customs, values, and ideas that wehave in common with Eastern andWestern Europeans and with Northand South Americans. We sharemany concepts in government, reli-gion, art, literature, and economicsystems.

    Acquaintance withAncient CulturesPromotes Toleranceand Understanding.

    Aware of the rich and varied cultureof the Greeks and Romans, one ismore likely to accept the differingcustoms and values of other peoplestoday. For in the study of ancient civ-ilizations, one encounters exotic

    and extreme customs, which werenot static, but evolved over the cen-turies. Familiar with diversity,change, and longevity in his ownculture, a person is more inclined torespect the views, ideologies, religions,and economic systems of foreignpeoples and to appreciate their rich,age-old traditions.

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