A Complete Lectio, II

salvēte iterum, amīcī.  In this post, as promised, we continue our adventure through Lectiō Secunda of Cursus Primus of the Tres Columnae project.  Again, if you’d like, you can see the whole thing (in draft form!) at this link.

Last time, we looked at the short fabellae with which this Lectiō begins, and at the initial grammatical explanations for the “new thing” (nominative vs. genitive case nouns).  Now we’ll look at a slightly longer fabella and the “new thing” there – questions that incorporate nominatives and genitives.  As I’ve worked with the Tres Columnae project, and as I’ve experimented with more and more oral Latin questions in my own face-to-face classes, I’ve become increasingly committed to the idea of “lots of oral questions, most of the time.”  In fact, as you read this post (if you’re reading it live), I’m away from school at a meeting.  But my Latin I students are asking each other oral questions (with answers provided) about a story they’ve just read.  I’m excited to see how they – and the substitute – respond to this process. 🙂

Now for that longer fabella:

Picture … a picture of Valerius’ house, with the whole familia standing outside. Again with clickable audio, we read:

  • in domō Valēriī, Valērius est paterfamīliās, et Caelia est māterfamiliās.
  • Valerius est marītus Caeliae, et Caelia est uxor Valeriī.
  • in domō Valeriī, Valēria est fīlia, Lūcius est fīlius, et Caeliōla est fīlia.
  • Valērius est pater Valēriae. Valērius est pater Lūciī. Valērius est pater Caeliōlae.
  • Caelia est māter Valēriae. Caelia est māter Lūciī. Caelia est māter Caeliōlae.
  • Valēria est fīlia Valēriī et Caeliae.
  • Lūcius est fīlius Valēriī et Caeliae.
  • Caeliōla est fīlia Valēriī et Caeliae.

There’s an option to sort nouns into cāsus nōminātīvus and cāsus genitīvus groups, which we’ll encourage you to do if

  • your initial self-rating, above, was 1, 2, or 3, or
  • you had to repeat the rem probā or rem exercē steps I described last time.

Then we have some examples of quaestiōnēs et respōnsa:

  • quis est marītus Caeliae? Valērius
  • cuius fīlius est Lūcius? Valēriī
  • quis est uxor Valērī? Caelia
  • cuius marītus est Valērius? Caeliae

Once again, no English and no preliminary explanation; just an opportunity to interact with meaningful language.  When you’re ready, you click and move along to the explanation.

quid novī?

  • We’ve now learned how to ask who someone is: quis?
  • We’ve also learned how to ask whose someone – or something – is, or who someone or something belongs tocuius?
  • With a quis? question the answer is a nōmen cāsūs nōminātīvī.
  • With a cuius? question the answer is a nōmen cāsūs genitīvī.

As you might imagine, there’s an opportunity for self-rating, with a branching structure depending on how high you rate your comfort with the concept and on how much additional practice you want.  For most learners, the preferred path will probably be:

rem exercē:

The fabella is repeated, and you’re presented with 5 multiple-choice questions drawn from the following list:

  • quis est marītus Caeliae? Valerius / Valeriī
  • cuius marītus est Valerius? Caelia / Caeliae
  • quis est uxor Valeriī? Caelia / Caeliae
  • cuius uxor est Caelia? Valerius / Valeriī
  • quis est pater Valeriae? Valerius / Valeriī
  • cuius pater est Valerius? Valeria / Valeriae
  • cuius fīlia est Valeria? Valerius / Valeriī
  • quis est fīlia Valeriī? Valeria / Valeriae
  • quis est pater Lūciī? Valerius / Valeriī
  • cuius pater est Valerius? Lūcius / Lūciī
  • cuius fīlius est Lūcius? Valerius / Valeriī
  • quis est fīlius Valeriī? Lūcius / Lūciī
  • etc.

For each question, the right answer returns:

ita vērō! rem acū tetigistī! (and the complete sentence)

But the wrong answer to a quis question returns:

minimē! quis requires a nōmen cāsūs nōminātīvī as an answer. But you chose a nōmen cāsūs genitīvī. Would you like to try again?

Similarly, the wrong answer to a cuius question returns:

minimē! cuius requires a nōmen cāsūs genitīvī as an answer. But you chose a nōmen cāsūs nōminātīvī. Would you like to try again?

For the “Would you like to try again?” questions,

  • Yes brings up a new question from the bank.
  • No brings up a new question: Would you like a different explanation of the difference between cāsus nōminātīvus and cāsus genitīvus?

quid respondētis, amīcissimī?

  • I thought about a flow-chart, but I wondered if you’d prefer a narrative like this.  Would the flow-chart help or hurt your comprehension?
  • What do you think of the alternation between fabellae and quaestiōnēs?
  • Are the learners active enough for your taste, or not active enough, or too active?  What changes would you make in their activity level?
  • You may have noticed, again, that there are no Latin-to-English (or vice versa) vocabulary glosses at all in these fabellae.  Does that seem like a strength or a weakness to you?  Why?
  • Have you noticed the places where my description (here) is different from the draft (over there)?  If so, did you wonder why the differences?  In my face-to-face classes, they’re called “mistakes,” and they happen from time to time to keep learners on their toes! 🙂
  • Do you like the “real” or the “described” project better in the places where they’re different?

Tune in next time for the even longer fābula from Lectiō Secunda.  If you enjoyed Rīdiculus mūs before, I think you’ll love this next story!  And in the meantime, thanks so much for keeping those emails and comments coming.

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