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Ludere Latine I: Latina Christiana I Puzzles and Games Review by Anne Weiland

Paul O'Brien
Memoria Press
4105 Bishop Lane
Louisville, KY 40218

What does it take to master a foreign language? Practice, practice, and more practice. If some of that practice can be fun, so much the better. In that spirit, Memoria Press has published a book of puzzles and games designed for use with Latina Christiana I, an elementary Latin program. A parenthetical word about Latina Christiana I: it is meant for 3rd ?5th grade students, and parents/teachers need not have had any previous Latin experience.

The four types of word games in Ludere Latine I are both enjoyable and instructive. In the word search puzzles, the student is given a list of words to locate in a grid of letters. These promote familiarity with the Latin vocabulary. There are two types of crossword puzzles. In some crosswords, the student is asked for the English derivatives of Latin words. In others, English grammar forms are given as clues, and the student must translate to Latin. The student is then practicing English and Latin vocabulary and grammar. The fourth game is hangman. These are used as a way of practicing Latin sayings.

Ludere Latine I could be used hand in hand with Latina Christiana I as a pleasing supplement. The lessons in both books correspond directly. Each Ludere lesson provides three puzzles for the corresponding Latina lesson. For multiple students, Memoria Press offers additional discounted copies of Ludere Latine I if you have purchased the first copy new. This is a tempting offer for those of us who spend too much time at the local copier already.

Ludere Latine I is helpful support to the beginning study of Latin. Students who enjoy pencil and paper activities will love this resource. I happen to love crossword puzzles and the like. Other students will not cherish the chance to spend more time with a workbook, however puzzle-y it may be. Latina Christiana I is actually thorough enough in itself that many students will not need any supplementation. I would use this for students needing extra practice, or for review after a break (e.g., summer or after a new baby). I appreciate having someone else come up with this type of fun practice that easily correlates to a program I?m already using. Now, will there be a similar tool to accompany Latina II?

-- Product review by Anne Weiland, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November 2005