Weeks 1 and 2 In Rome

So far, the program has been great. The Latin immersion is helping my reading speed more than any other Latin class I’ve taken. While we do traditional classroom instruction 4 days of the week, often site visits are almost entirely in Latin. Our tours through Sperlonga, the Capitoline, the Catacombs of St. Priscilla, the Ara Pacis, and Pompeii were only in Latin. I can follow most conversations and directions now, but responding is still pretty slow for me. I’ve found that my grammar is pretty good already from my previous Latin classes, but my vocabulary is not up to par since most of the translation I’ve done has not been conversational Latin. My reading speed is already much better, however, and I’ve been practicing vocabulary on my own in addition to our scheduled classes.

I was used to being able to take my time on translation before, since for most Latin classes, you prepare you translation beforehand and are able to use a dictionary when needed. With Living Latin in Rome, we are often expected not only to translate on the spot and sight-read, but also to follow conversations and respond quickly. I can already tell that I’m finding it faster and easier after just two weeks and speaking has also helped my reading speed.

Our site-visits each week also help to put everything in context for me. When reading texts, I actually have a reference for where things were relative to each other and how far apart they were. Knowing the geography of Rome has also helped my reading speed since I can better understand what the authors are referring to.

So far, we’ve visited the Campus Martius, the Capitoline, Sperlonga, the Forum, the Palatine, Ostia, the Ara Pacis, the Catacombs of St. Priscilla, the Naples Archaeological Museum, Vesuvius, Pompeii, and Cumae.