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Courses on development and more thorough expertise of the classical languages and teaching methodologies, sponsored and developed by the Mnemosyne Foundation and operated in collaboration with the Vivarium Novum Academy.
Learn to fluently read, write, and speak the original language of Western Civilization.
ROME, June 24th - August 17th, 2013
During the 1980s a group of young classicists in Southern Italy began to gather around an old teacher and discuss the necessity of renovating the didactics of the classical languages. Young people from schools and universities from all over the world came to join them to spend years studying Latin and Greek - two languages that hardly anyone today manages to learn completely. From the discussions held during that time arose the need to analyze the course of history and the art of teaching Latin: How did the Humanists learn this language? How did Politian, Erasmus, Vives, and Comenius teach it? For this research, the students analyzed the most effective methods of modern language teaching: How was it possible that a parliamentary interpreter of Finno - Ugric languages could learn to perfectly read, write, and speak Hungarian in a relatively short period of time, but a high school student, after four or five years of study, could not comprehend even the simplest of Latin texts without the aid of lexica and grammars, and without having to translate it laboriously into his own language? And yet students heard four, even five hours of lessons a week, dedicating at least as much time to individual study.
The Academy Vivarium Novum has acquired a worldwide fame throughout the last decade for having studied, identified, and introduced methods of teaching Latin and Greek which may pose as a remedy to this situation. It has held international conventions concerning the topic from 1991 to the present day, with the participation of the greatest experts in the world. It has diffused in Italy and revitalized in Europe and the United States the contextual-inductive method for teaching classical languages. It has founded an international school to which students have poured in from every continent, where they acquire in a very short time a full and total command of the Latin language.
Now the Academy is placing its acquired competency from years of research and teaching at the service of those who wish to learn Latin with effective results and need to do so in a rather short period of time. The course utilizes specific teaching techniques, from induction according to the natural method to the Total Physical Response, and from "suggestopedia" to storytelling, as well as the Rassias Method. Through active use of the language - daily conversations and writing exercises - students may experience the method of teaching employed in the Humanistic schools during the Renaissance. This mixed approach, tested for years by the experts of the Academy, allows students to attain in only eight weeks the results that normally require almost three years of study.
The courses are open to students of every nationality. To be able to read Latin texts fluently is a skill that not only those who study classical literature need, but also those who study Medieval and Modern history, European literary history, law, philosophy, the history of science, theology, and liturgy.
The classes provide for a total immersion in the Latin language. They are divided into two fundamental courses and a third course which is for teachers and which is contingent on enrollment.:
1. Latin I (from the first week to the fourth; 15 ECTS): dedicated to those who have no or hardly any previous knowledge of the Latin language. Students will learn morphology, syntax, and vocabulary (1,800 of the most frequent words), and will begin reading genuine Latin texts (the Gospels, Catullus, Martial, Phaedrus, Caesar). Duration: 156 hours.
2. Latin II (from the fifth week to the eighth; 15 ECTS): dedicated to those who have attended the first course, Latin I, or who already possess an active knowledge of the fundamental notions of Latin grammar and syntax, and who know at least the 1,600 words indicated in the lexicon of Besançon. The students will be taught to read Latin authors fluently in the original texts (Cicero, Sallustius, Livy, Horace, Seneca, Petronius, Pliny the Younger, Eutropius, Ambrogius, St. Augustine, Erasmus, and many others). Duration: 156 hours.
3. Latin III (312 hours: 156 hours during the first 4 weeks + 156 during the last 4 weeks. We will launch this course only if we reach a minimum of 20 registrations): This module is designed specifically for Latin teachers who wish to improve their didactic skills by applying a wide range of strategies in class. This strategies, developed by experts of the didactic of modern languages, facilitate the use of the inductive method in the teaching of Latin. With this approach, teachers are able to explain to young students the works of ancient, medieval and modern Latin writers. With a full immersion in the language, daily practice and Latin conversation, lessons, and other activities, even teachers with no previous experience in the active use of Latin will be able, within two months, to fluently speak, write and teach Latin. As we read the chapters of Latin authors, we will also explore the methods of language teaching used by both Renaissance and modern masters.
Class times: For each of the courses (Latin I, II and III), three lessons will be held in the morning from Monday through Saturday, and will last an hour and a half each. In the afternoon, students will devote their time to studying the material covered in class and to the completion of daily assignments. In the evening, from 7 to 9pm, students will attend a final session of the day consisting of play-curricular activities. Each week a test will be administered to ensure that students are making adequate progress. Credits will not be granted unless these tests are passed.
9.00-10.30: first session
10.45-12.15: second session
12.45-14.00: third session
15.00-19.00: individual study
19.00-21.00: play-curricular activities
(dramatizations, music, linguistic games, use of audiovisual equipment, etc.)
During the breaks a cafeteria service will be available.
Although students will have the afternoon (from 3 - 7pm) at their disposal, they need to realize from the outset that the courses are extremely demanding: they cannot expect that this will be a little "vacation-study," or to only have to dedicate a small part of their time to the amount of work which the courses require. They must scrupulously observe the times indicated and homework assigned, if they want to successfully reach the goal. Sundays are free, and during breaks it will be possible to take advantage of the playing fields (basketball, soccer, tennis), as well as the campus swimming pool.
On Sundays, both in the first and in the second month, students will make three excursions to places in Campania or in Latium during which lessons will be held and participants will visit archaeological sites including Pompeii, Cuma, Roman Forum, Via Appia, Ostia, Hadrian’s Villa in Tivoli among others. The definite schedule of these trips will be announced before the beginning of the summer program. The order of these excursions may be subject to changes.
In order to participate in the courses, students are required to fill out the application form and send a 10% deposit of the total program fee. This fee is required as a partial contribution to the annual expenses of the Mnemosyne Foundation. These courses, however, are non-profit; all benefits will be used to grant scholarships to the greatest amount of talented young students.
- The cost of the program is € 4.980 and covers full participation in the eight-week course (from July 24th to August 17th ), including hosting, textbooks, and excursions.
- The cost of participation in only one of the two modules is € 2.500.
- The price of a single room is € 500 each month.
The payment must be transferred exclusively in euros by check or wire transfer.
Held by the Mnemosyne Foundation
Description of the transfer: Student's name
Students stay at the campus, where they will be served breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. Each room is equipped with a bathroom and a shower. Married couples may stay in a double room. Total immersion in an environment where Latin is the only language allowed implies the need to live on campus.
Available seats are limited. Each group will consist of a maximum of 20-25 students, in order to enable individuals a positive learning experience through active participation in exercises and discussion.
To register for courses and reserve a spot, one must send the application form, along with a non-refundable deposit of 10% of the total price no later than May 30th, 2013. Due to rising demand to attend courses by people throughout the entire world, it is advisable to apply as soon as possible.
Requests relating to the summer courses should be addressed to:
c/o Prof. Luigi Miraglia PhD
Via Corrado Barbagallo, 20 00166 - ROMA (Italia)
Phone. +39 06 66 58 98 33 - +39 06 66 89 034
Fax +39 06 61 00 72 66