Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Should Your Children Learn Latin?

My recent rebuttal of North's paper brought a legitimate question: should we teach our covenant children Latin?

Here is a reprint of my response:

Hello ----,

My take on education in general is that the classes needed for children are the classes that first equip them for the glory of God. Thus the basics are required to read the bible and listen to sermons. Beyond that additional training is needed to equip the children for their vocation in life. This part is very flexible since part of equipping children for their vocation in the kingdom of God involves finding out what it is!

Thus, when used aright the great number of options today (compared to our Puritan forefathers) are opportunities to see if these are avenues for our children to further explore. These are the intro classes that may wet their taste buds for advanced studies.

Latin could be such a class. Dr. Coppes taught a summer of Latin for each of his children. This had the double-purpose of giving them a foreign language (one which is primal to many others) that can help them with their vocabulary and the like. And it also gave them a taste of a foreign language to see if they hand language-skills waiting to be expanded.

As for a child aspiring to the ministry, Latin is not required in the least bit. However, it could be useful for the child to get comfortable with foreign languages (such as Greek). And it may help stretch his mind with the memorization and the required logical thinking needed to translate.

Hope that helps,

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