The Association for Latin Teaching

respice prospice

Newsletter 27: July 2005

Dear Classical Friend,


The Royal Holloway Summer School


It must be old age. I came home yesterday from the ARLT Summer School at Royal Holloway and I am still feeling I've done so much in a short time that I'm liable to drop off to sleep in my chair at any moment. But the Summer School was great. Multum in parvo. Just three days (midday Thursday to midday Sunday) into which were fitted:

Hours (approx):                   70

Lectures:              7

Option Groups (9 slots with 4 choices in each) 36

Meals (including tea and coffee)  15

Choir rehearsals            2

Committee Meetings            2

Annual Meetings                    1

Sessions explaining the ARLT web site          1

Books to buy (at a rough guess)               5000

Books that I bought            3

Church services                    1

Evenings of entertainment           1

Old friends met and new friends made (approx)   60

We all owe a great debt of gratitude to a lots of people, notably Linda Soames who directed the course, Pauline Cox-Smith who acted as Summer School Secretary, Robert West who looked after the money, and Dan from the College who was there to dish out keys, serve coffee, take the group photo, lend his own computer loudspeakers, and troubleshoot in a hundred ways.

We are also indebted to the late Angela Felgate for a generous legacy which we hear is to come to ARLT to be used for helping first-time attenders at the Summer School; so if you know a colleague who might come to the next Summer School if the cost were lessened, tell them about it, and watch the web site for more information. This will be an automatic reduction - the teacher or trainee teacher will not have to fill in a form or anything.

I have put a full size version of the group photo on the blog and shall add a link from the web site. Various other pictures can be seen in an album on a site called 'Shutterfly' : You can order prints from that site if you wish. I'm afraid only the first few pictures are labelled.

Some of my lecture notes are on the blog now. Others will go on as and when ...


"I missed the Summer School! Tell me about next year."


Tasos Aidonis is going to direct next year's Summer School in St John's College, Durham, and he told us about some of his plans. The Course will run from Monday to Saturday, starting, I believe, on 24th July, so there will be a little more breathing space than is possible in the 3 day courses - and teachers who like the whole of August to be free of anything work-related will be able to come to Durham and still enjoy the whole of August elsewhere.

The Wednesday is to be an archaeology day, beginning at Arbeia and Wallsend where I am very much looking forward to seeing the reconstructed Roman bathhouse, and going by way of less well-known buildings associated with Hadrian's Wall to end at Vindolanda, where there seems to be always something new to see and hear about.

Tasos has already booked a stellar array of lecturers. In fact preparations are so far advanced that I hope to be able to add to the new Summer School page on the web site very soon. The page is /home/arltcouk/public_html/summer_school2006.php. At the moment, apart from the barest details and a pic of Tasos' handsome physog, there's a counter announcing that we have only 363 days and a few odd hours till it's Summer School time again. Can't wait!


This is from the President


I have been asked to promote a book called Meet the Philosophers of Ancient Greece by Patricia F. O'Grady ( published by Ashgate). I cannot say that I have read it yet but it does seem to be a series of bite sized chapters on an extensive range of people and therefore perhaps a good way into the subject for students. It claims to be 'aimed at the student market and to be an ideal companion and text book for students and teachers of the Classics and Classical Civilisation'.


I (David) add a few details culled from elsewhere:

Meet the Philosophers of Ancient Greece

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Ancient Greek Philosophy but didn't Know Who to Ask

Patricia F. O'Grady $29.95/£16.99

Read the Introduction here.

>From Mark Thwaite's Blog:

Meet the Philosophers of Ancient Greece (Ashgate), edited by Patricia F. O'Grady (Adjunct Research Associate of Philosophy at Flinders University of South Australia, Adelaide), landed yesterday. Looks very good.


Before you switch off ....


In a moment, here followeth an announcement that you may want to switch off from, but before you do, have a look at the covering e-mail. It's inviting teachers to be school reps for Teachers' Television, which I suppose means pinning up a notice in the staff room every term; but it might also be a chance to have a say in getting Classics teaching programmes on the T.V. Think about it. My correspondent, Nimer, has a Classical background, so I warmed to her!

Dear David,

As far as supporting Classical education is concerned, as a former student of Latin and Greek, I fully appreciate your response and would suggest that participation in the Teachers' TV Associates scheme would be the most effective means for Classics teachers to voice their concerns.

Of course, the channel is not exclusively subject-oriented (or indeed teacher-oriented); there are a host of programmes which aim to assist the ongoing development of education professionals across the board, opening windows onto alternative strategies and ideas; with this in mind, I would be most grateful if you could send the out attached copy with your newsletters....

Gratias multas ago,


(With this in mind, do consider taking up this opportunity to be involved and perhaps to get the Classics onto the national teachers' channel. I'm not an active teacher, so I can't do it for you! Here's the official announcement:)

Coming up in September…

Would you like to be a champion for Teachers' TV in your school? Then apply to become a Teachers' TV Associate - a great way to find out more about the channel and help your colleagues tune in to see the wide range of programmes on offer.

As a Teachers' TV Associate you will have access to a wealth of extra information, previews and other benefits.

The scheme will launch in September 2005, when you can sign up online at

If you would like to register your interest in the scheme before then, send an email to with the word 'Associates' in the subject line, and we will send you further details when the scheme goes live.

(Teachers' TV Associates is open to all school staff and governors in England).


Classics Departments: a new page on the web site


I have begun to compile a list of all the schools in the country that teach Latin, with their Classics department web sites, if they have one.

The reasons are two: first, it would be useful to have a readily accessible list of Classics departments, and secondly, it will provide a wide range of departmental web sites to pinch ideas from. After all, we are all on the same side, aren't we?

If your school doesn't appear, or I haven't yet discovered your all-singing, all-dancing web site, do let me know and I'll be delighted to add the details. Likewise, if you have a departmental site on an intranet accessible only to your pupils, I'd be glad to put a note to that effect.


>From colleagues registering on the ARLT site


A few more of the messages that keep me going!


Many thanks for getting back to me. I'm afraid, as you can probably tell, I haven't used the site for ages and then only fleetingly. Recently, however, I've got a job at the new Hull Collegiate school and have a massive amount of work to do before September.

Your site looks a real treasure trove and I'm looking forward to exploring it. I was delighted to find all the Livy stuff and dived straight into the text.

I am extremely impressed with the site and will certainly become more familiar with it over the next couple of months. Thanks for all your hard work.


Thanks for that very nice welcome. I've been teaching Classics (mostly Latin) for over 25 years and at my present school for 15, but never looked on your site before. My loss, definitely.

Ratcliffe is supportive of my efforts in Latin in many ways, but my main concern and hate is the fact that for the past 5 years, although all three Year 7 classes study Latin, in Year 8 they only have 12 weeks of Latin on a carousel basis alongside tasters of Spanish and German. It does make continuity difficult. Also we get quite a lot of new students in Year 9, some of whom opt for Latin, some never having done it before, others having done 5 years at a Prep school.

I usually have about 8 students in Years 10 and 11. My AS classes range from 0 (this year) to 5 (starting in September) if those who have opted stick with their options.

I look forward to your news letters and to exploring the site more.

Best Wishes

Laraine Eccles

I have to confess to disliking Caesar intensely so have very little literature of my own to do with him! I have, however, found one of my old textbooks which has a selection of authors with about 20 pages of Caesar passages (from de bello Gallico) published by the University of Stellenbosch (South Africa)(ISBN 0908422873) if anyone else asks you the same question. (I don't know if it is still available though since it was printed in 1980). It has a selection of Ovid too.

Dear David

Thanks for sending me the registration details - I look forward to using your site which has already provided me with many points of interest, so I am sure that full access will prove to be equally beneficial.

In case you are interested the school website is:

We do run both Classics and Latin, although, as I suspect is the case everywhere, we have to work very hard to maintain numbers and so I am always on the lookout for any way to promote the subject, such as activities, trips, ways in which Latin can help other subjects, etc., etc. I am sure you know what I mean!

Thanks for an excellent site.


Dear David

Thank you for replying so promptly.

My Latin study extends only to school days. I studied New Testament Greek and Hebrew to degree level and have always maintained an interest in Latin. Having looked at the first of the 'Minimus' books it looks a very straight forward course to deliver.

It was an article about 'Minimus' in The Times recently that gave me the idea of running this course. It will come under the umbrella of provision for Gifted and Talented students in the school and will have to operate as a lunchtime club as there is no room for it in the timetable. I have long regretted the absence of Latin in the curriculum and this seems to be a good way of giving some students at least the opportunity of discovering it.

The course is dependent upon students choosing to take it - I will have to promote it well to persuade them to give up their lunchtime! However, I hope to make it fun for them and if the first year goes well they might wish to progress to the second 'Minimus' book.

If you know of any courses catering for people like me setting up a course 'from scratch' - who would also appreciate some 'brushing up' of their own Latin I would be very grateful if you would let me know about them.

With best wishes


(I pointed Lorraine to the Minimus web site which advertises just the courses she wants. I'm sure we all wish her well.)




I'm going to the one hundredth birthday party of a friend's mother next month. After that I may be away for a while, so the blog, and even the newsletter, may get neglected for a bit. Ignosce, precor. If you would like to have authorial access to the blog do let me know. We'd all benefit from some different contributors with different angles.

Enjoy your well earned holidays!

Best wishes,