Oct 14, 2011

TOS Review: Visual Latin

We love learning Latin around here, so when we were asked to review Visual Latin, we were interested and excited. We have attempted and given up on several programs, so we consider ourselves a little bit of experts on what we like and don't like about Latin curriculum.
Visual Latin was created by a couple of homeschooling dads who think everyone should be able to read Latin, and that it should be fun to learn and not a chore. It is a video curriculum, so the parent does none of the teaching. It comes with worksheets that you print so it is reusable for however many kids you have. Their website tells you how it works and, really, everything you need to know about it, including sample lessons, so I'll just tell you about our experience with it.

You can buy DVDs, or go the cheaper option and buy the download. For the purposes of this review, I was given the download option. The downloading was lengthy and awkward, but I honestly believe that was because my Internet has gotten incredibly lazy lately. In the end, it wasn't too bad, it took a couple of hours. We were sent 10 lessons, covering topics such as: being verbs; predicate nominative and adjective; gender; declensions; numbers; accusative; and so forth. I know that sounds scary, but remember, you don't do ANY of the teaching! The two kids I had use this curriculum have had basic grammar (they know what nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs are) and neither had any trouble understanding what he was saying or where he was going. Each lesson includes the video, and PDFs for worksheets, and answers to the worksheets. I really liked that the lessons were divided into three parts: A, B and C. This made it easy for me to do a lesson a week, and only do a little bit each day. It also made each day's work shorter and easier for the kids. Not to mention that they retained the information better! There is a worksheet for each section so the kids get hands-on practice for what they just learned, which just so happens to be perfect for the way my kids learn.
Now, one thing I have to mention is that everyone talks about how funny the teacher is. My kids have weird senses of humor, so they were not amused by his jokes. They really didn't get them. And honestly, they only knew he was joking whenever I laughed. But that is really more about their unique personality and less about how entertaining the guy actually was. Because he did hold their interest and keep them engaged the entire lesson. I really liked that he talked directly to them. It blew their minds a couple of times when he asked a question, they answered, and he told them they were right. They were not quite sure if he could hear them or not!

So, to sum up. I liked this curriculum a LOT. I am so happy we got the chance to review it and I will be buying the next ten lessons when we are finished with these ten.
I asked the kids to give you their opinions, and they said,

Kaytie: I like it because it is easy to understand what he is talking about. If it is like a name or something that we haven't studied, he will say the real word so that we don't have to learn it before we can do the worksheet. And we have translation boxes. (Translation: she understood him; he didn't expect them to know vocabulary they hadn't been taught; and there were vocabulary boxes on the worksheets so they could focus on the grammar without getting hung up on translation.)
Nate: I don't like it, there is too much writing. But I like watching the videos, he is funny. I would only recommend this to moms whose kids like to write. (The writing bit was my fault. It would be easy to do the worksheets orally, if your kid, like mine, hates to write. Doing it orally would also save on printing costs...)

For other TOS Crew members' opinions, click here.

I was given this download free for the purpose of this review. I received no other compensation and the opinions given are honestly and totally our own.


Cristi said...

I'm happy to know that it wasn't just my kids who were less than amused at his jokes.

Great review!

momofmanybentzs said...

Great review - adorable kiddos! We got a kick out of this program as well. Stopping by from the Crew.


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