Yesterday we got C’s course request form for middle school. Everything looked great except that they’d enrolled him in French, and we’d prefer him to take Spanish or Latin. We get a chance to change the courses, so we had a family discussion about which language would be best.
We ended up choosing Latin over Spanish, because:
1. Latin is a great backbone language. It will help him learn other languages down the road, of course, but it will also help him in English, for the SAT, and in science.
2. His middle school is an IB World School which in this case means he’ll be getting high school credit for his foreign language classes. 6th & 7th grade foreign language together count as a year of high school credit, and 8th grade will give him the other year.
This frees him up in high school to continue with Latin OR to take Spanish which definitely has more immediate benefits for a person living in Texas. So in a way it feels like these middle school years are “bonus” years – why not take advantage of the extra language opportunity?
3. C already really likes Latin. His future high school has a great Latin teacher, and this year his class has done weekly Skype classes with the teacher as an introduction to the language. C likes the language and learning about Romans.
4. Harry Potter spells. Obviously.
I was on the fence about it for a bit just because no one speaks Latin anywhere in the world outside the Catholic Church, and because I’m certified to teach Spanish and could help him anytime – but I’m really warming to the idea that Latin will help him in lots of other areas. (Also, I’m a word geek and I’m probably a little bit looking forward to learning it along with him.) Hope we’re making the right choice!
It’s a good thing I have things like this to mull over; they distract me from freaking out over the fact that we have a kid about to enter middle school. Oy.