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Latin for Children Series: Primer Sets A, B and C Review by Lisa Barthuly & Family

Dr. Aaron Larsen & Dr. Christopher Perrin
Classical Academic Press
829 State Street, Suite 206
Lemoyne, PA 17043

Classical Academic Press has put together a thorough, classic, engaging program for teaching Latin to our children.

In their "Latin for Children" series, Classical Academic Press has a program that we found easy to follow and that the children have enjoyed! (I never would have equated Latin with joy, but it's true!) The "Latin for Children" program is also integrated with Shurley Grammar.

Each bundled "level" is complete and easy to teach! Level A includes an Activity Book with a soft (colorful) cover, is spiral bound, and has over 150 pages of word searches, puzzles, games, and answers in the back! The Activity Books are fun--the children love them. Level A also contains a CD of Latin Chants (I think this is key--makes it so easy to remember!) and 3-DVD set (over 5 hours!) that shows Dr. Perrin and his homeschooled children working on their Latin lessons together. My girls could really identify with this. This bundle or level also contains a Primer, soft cover, spiral bound book of lessons (32 chapters), and a softcover teacher's edition. The lessons coincide with the CD and DVD and Activity Book, making it simple to follow along and "cementing" the lessons together for the children (and parent). Level A also contains a paperback book of 15 Latin historical short stories that are integrated with Primer A, questions, and a glossary at the back. Primer set A is the first in this series, and it starts with covering Verbs, Verb endings, Nouns, Adjectives, Predicate Adjectives, Sentence Pattern, and more.

Level B contains an Activity Book and CD/DVD (over 6 hours!). We love these because it's easy to follow along with the Perrins and hear the children's questions on the DVDs and Dad's answers. The "chants," or singing of lessons, are wonderful. There is also a Primer for this B level that is almost 300 pages (32 chapters). There is also a teacher's edition as well as a nice paperback reader of over 100 pages with 32 stories about medieval history, integrated with level B. Topics covered in level B are Noun & Verb Review, Pronouns, Preposition Review, Numbers, Declension Nouns, Demonstrative Pronouns, Tense & Sentence Patterns, Conjunction of Verbs, and more. A glossary is broken down into defined categories and reference charts. It is illustrated with a medieval theme, and including reviews of Level A as well as new material, this Level B Primer is taking us into a deeper, even more exciting knowledge of Latin and its history!

Level C contains a chant CD and over five hours of DVD instruction with the Perrin family as well as Primer C and a teacher's edition. Primer C is spiral bound softcover, as are the other leveled primers, but this edition is over 300 pages (31 chapters). This primer includes a glossary (new words as well as by chapter and alphabetical), an appendix of famous Latin sayings, and a reference chart. This primer features a nautical theme that takes us along, chapter by chapter, for a voyage of adventures with a brave sea captain. The handy reference of verb conjugations on the front inside cover is great. Topics/lessons include Nouns & Adjectives, Verbs (in detail!), Conjunctions, Imperatives, Infinitives, Interrogatives, Declension Nouns, Pronoun Review, Correlative Adverbs, and of course more!

We have thoroughly enjoyed this engaging study of Latin from Classical Academic Press. They even included a copy of "An Introduction to Classical Education," a 40-page paperback, that I found very helpful. Classical Academic Press also sent along for review their "Art of Argument" which I found wonderful. See that review listed separately.

If I could change something? Well, I would have more stories and an Activity Guide for Level C. I wish that more of the maxims were based on Scripture rather than famous literature (personal preference here). While we can rewind or replay till we "get it" with the DVDs. We found they went a little fast for us, and we ended up watching and rewatching (not entirely a bad thing, at all, just our personal preference). All in all, I would highly recommend this program. We found it fun, engaging, and easily planned out for the parent-teacher. Very well rounded program--their motto, "Classical Subjects ~ Creatively Taught," is so true. Kudos, Classical Academic Press!

Product review by Lisa Barthuly & Family, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, August 2006