Posts discussing issues relevant to language acquisition and Hellenistic Greek. What is necessary to become competent in reading Ancient Greek? What is the difference between learning and acquiring Greek? These and related questions appear in the category “Acquisition” and its daughter categories “Learn Greek” and “Learning Greek.”
Given the recent growth of interest in learning to actually speak Hellenistic Greek, I’m not surprised to see another class offering that goal. What I do find surprising is that it’s online, and that it only costs $30. Once I recovered from the surprise, though, I realized that Michael is exactly the person to do this. He is very proficient at both blogging and video production and has already produced a string of youtube videos on speaking Koine Greek.
Paul D. Nitz introduced me this week to a new Google Group entitled Ancient Greek Best Practices. The group is intended for discussion of “the Communicative Approach.” Here’s the way their welcome page explains it:
The Ancient Greek Best Practices Group exists to discuss communicative approaches to learning/teaching Greek. This approach views Greek as communication, not code. This discussion board is rather disinterested in debating whether the Grammar/Translation method is superior. We are all convinced (or deeply interested) in a Communicative Approach to teaching Ancient Greek.
The Communicative Approach can include such methods as Total Physical Response (TPR – James Asher) and Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling (TPRS – Blaine Ray), picture books and audio (Living Koine), “shadowing,” or other methods we will invent here on this discussion board.
I added a page today giving a brief history of the pronunciation of Α/α.
This is the first in a set of pages I intend to write on issues of pronunciation. These pages will not be linked from the main page of this blog, but will form part of the materials supporting my online grammar. You can find the one on ἄλφα here. It is not intended to be an authoritative source, but a simple explanation for the curious.
I discovered Michael W Halcomb’s series of videos on Koine Greek today and would like to recommend them to anyone beginning the process of learning to speak biblical Greek. I’ve only watch a few of the videos so far, but can tell that Michael’s method is well founded in language acquisition theory.
The videos should work very well for creating fluency. Each one is only a few minutes long and is focussed clearly on a single lesson objective.
I just read a very honest assessment by Daniel R. Streett of the state of Ancient Greek instruction at very many institutions in the U.S. If you’ve studied Greek, take a look at his post and see if it matches your experience. I matches mine. It took me many years of hard work to overcome the drawbacks of this method!
I have updated lessons 22 and 23 (Present and Imperfect Middle/Passive). The changes to lesson 22 are very minor—just a few wording changes. The main change to lesson 23, though, is the deletion of the discussion on transitivity. I will introduce that topic in a later lesson with much better examples. This change helps unnecessary complication, tightening the focus on the issue of voice.
In each of the lessons dealing with the middle and passive voices, I have taken the opportunity to introduce a little more detail needed for a clear understanding of the functions of these voice categories. In lesson 22 I have included an unusually long discussion of transitivity as it relates to the passive voice.
While I think understanding transitivity is crucial for correctly understanding Greek voice, I’m unsure about how helpful my discussion of it is for beginning students. I would love to hear candid remarks on how helpful this discussion is or how obscure, confusing, or problematic you consider it to be.
I have thick skin. I can take criticism. I want the grammar to be useful to as many students as possible, so I don’t mind hearing recommendations for change!