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Hazelwood Nursery & Early Years Parents
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Latin and Classical Greek
Classicists at Hazelwood can often be found running through the courts on an imperfect/perfect tense treasure hunt, or acting a play on the Head's lawn to show the meaning of the genitive case.
Latin is no longer the dry and dusty subject that parents remember from their time at school. At Hazelwood we believe that learning Latin and Greek teaches children invaluable skills which are hard to find in any other subject. In order to teach those skills, we have to engage the children and make sure that they enjoy the learning of them.
Latin and Greek require the ability to memorise. This is not something that comes easily to pupils at this age and the work we do on helping pupils work out different techniques to remember vocabulary and grammar endings is an extremely useful transferable skill. It is also a real challenge to analyse and manipulate a fully inflected language. Pupils have to use analytical skills at a very high level to unravel the meaning of a Latin sentence or to translate from English back into Latin.
All pupils start Latin in year 6 and most continue through to Common Entrance in year 8. In Years 7 and 8 some children are also given the chance to learn Greek. Our examination results are high because the children know exactly what to expect in the Common Entrance examination and have plenty of practice. They also build up a body of vocabulary and grammar knowledge gradually and securely.
As well as all the vocabulary and grammar, we do get a chance to give the pupils an insight into the endlessly fascinating world of the Romans and Greeks. The annual trip to Fishbourne Roman Palace is a good opportunity for pupils to try out Roman cooking or to get the feel of what it would have been like to be a new recruit in the Roman army. We have a termly Classics Film club complete with non-Roman popcorn, and the children are always captivated by the fascinating Greek myths.
William Fagg
Head of Classics
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