20,000+ Total Words Read: The Secret

Over the 55 hours of CI starting in September up to the holiday break, students read on their own for 34 total minutes of Sustained Silent Reading (SSR), and 49 minutes of Free Voluntary Reading (FVR)…

As a class, students read one novella: Quīntus et nox horrifica (1100 total words). The real magic, however, came from reading over 17,000 total words of Latin based on co-created texts, simple stories, scenes, and descriptions! That figure also excludes four packets comprised of student storyboard drawings that had Latin captions. With additional chapters of various novellas read during FVR, a solid figure would be that students have read 20,000 words of Latin so far in their first year, not including any rereading at home!

That’s a lot.

For comparison, students read only ~6500 total words by Stage 12, and just ~14,500 by Stage 20 in the first two textbooks of the Cambridge Latin Course. Granted, that’s if students read ALL passages, which many teachers don’t get to, skipping some of the extension readings. Reading Cambridge also requires students to understand over 500 unique words. Students in my Latin class, however, have read over 25% more Latin having been exposed to far less recycled & spiraled vocab! Oh, and this is by holiday break in the first year, whereas most programs take a year or two to get through that textbook material. bombax!

What’s The Secret?
The key to providing students with so much Latin has been planning every class to begin with a text (even if it was just a sentence long), and every class ending with a new one. Sure, there were days when it didn’t work out that way, but there were also days when students left with 3 new pages of understandable Latin! It’s easy; a simple prompt or survey (e.g. DC vs. Marvel) could get you a great discussion, then type it up for the next day, or do it in class with the students during Write & Discuss. But the next day will already begin with at least one text, and you’ll type up that class’ events, so you’ve already got the ball rolling on continuous new texts after the first two days. Other input hypermiling combos strengthen the FVR reading selection, as well as contribute to the overall total word count read by students.

Of course, students would not have been able to read as much without receiving the additional input during class interaction. This list includes all the class activities so far this year in order of appearance, though many continued every other week or so, like Card Talk, Picture Talk, Discipulus Illustris, etc. Some activities were better suited for the start of the year, but most will be used again. Almost all of them are input-based, and the output-based ones were really just to get us more input (i.e. additional texts for me to type up and edit). This just shows that I won’t need to invent, or introduce much else in order to finish out the year. Work smarter, not harder!

Read & Discuss
Choral Translation
Card Talk
Item Talk
3 Ring Circus
Picture Talk
Discipulus Illustris
Calendar Talk
Quick Quiz
Listen & Draw
Read & Translate
K-F-D Quiz
OWI Profile
Spot-Check Translation
Silent Volleyball Translation
Storytelling while Drawing
Silent Sustained Reading (SSR)
Draw the Drawn Drawing
Silent True/False Reading
The septem Game!
Sentence Flyswatter Challenge
Story Cube Storyasking
Word Race
Storycube Reconstruction
*Venn Diagram-best used when unplanned, as a reaction to student response
Novella Study Groups
Read & Draw
Free Voluntary Read (FVR)
Most Detailed Scene
*Create Teamz-best used when unplanned, as a reaction to student response
Storyboard Dictation
*Simple Survey-best used when unplanned, as a reaction to student response
Timed Write
CALP-Inspired Topic Framework
Storycard Magic

4 thoughts on “20,000+ Total Words Read: The Secret

  1. Pingback: Timed Write Hypermiling: Copy/Change/Continue | Magister P.

  2. Pingback: 37,000 Total Words Read! | Magister P.

  3. Pingback: 45,000 Total Words Read! | Magister P.

  4. For comparison, students read only ~6500 total words by Stage 12, and just ~14,500 by Stage 20 in the first two textbooks of the Cambridge Latin Course.

    It’s not absolutely clear from the above, but I checked it up and confirmed it, so for anyone else who is wondering: Stage 12 is the last stage of CLC book 1 while Stage 20 is the last stage of book 2 so those figures (assuming they’re correct) give the total number of words in book 1 and in book 1 plus book 2. Is there anywhere one can easily find the Latin word counts for Books 3, 4 and 5?

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