I thoroughly enjoy engaging with new students, discussing and showing the ways language connects us to the past and to other cultures. Learning where words come from, and how they have evolved over time, strengthens not only our understanding of culture and meaning, but opens the door to realizing the connection between all people, and in turn ourselves. For me, learning Latin and Greek has been this doorway to understanding meaning.
To put it simply, it wasn't until I learned another language that I started to fully understand my own! I began to see vocabulary, grammar, and syntax in a broader context, and this foundation would in turn strengthen my ability to learn new languages, and further understand the similarities and differences in other cultures.
Having fun is crucial to learning a new language - going outside one's comfort zone to learn a new language can be difficult and stressful, but I find it important to keep things simple, and break things down to their simplest parts. This applies to everything - a long word, complex sentence, or advanced grammatical concept. Once something is understood in it's most basic form, the memory retention is that much greater.
These "Aha!" moments are what I live for, and seeing students experience these for the first time is a consistent rush of joy. The ability and responsibility to provide these moments, for me, is a worthwhile endeavour.
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