"Visual Latin is a combination of short videos and exercises that work together to teach your children (or you) Latin. The curriculum is designed so that it requires no knowledge of Latin either by the student or the parent administering the class. Just hit play and start learning." (from the site)
Imagine your student walking up to you one morning and saying, "I love Latin."
Did your jaw just drop? Mine did. Or is that still not enough for you? Then listen to the rest.
"This guy teaches Latin so I can understand it. He makes me feel like I already speak the language. When I am working on this class I feel really smart."
That really got me. That is what Tex actually said to me a week or so ago when he was working on lesson six of Visual Latin with Dwane Thomas as his video teacher.Tex had been doing Visual Latin for a few weeks, and laughing his way through nearly every lesson. I completed the first few lessons with him, so I could try them out, plus I figured he might need the help since Latin can be intimidating at the best of times.
However, there was nothing intimidating about this Latin program.
Every step of the way, both Tex and I felt able to do whatever was asked, were inspired to delve deeper into our own language, and stayed excited to try just one lesson more. Can I say anything else to express how much we enjoyed this program? I truly believe that Tex's statement above says it all. We've tried other Latin programs, and liked them just fine, but always felt as if, well, Latin was a bit more than we were prepared to take on. Not so with this amazing program.
From the beginning, Visual Latin instills in you a desire to learn more, to do more, to go farther in your studies because you feel like you CAN. A lot of that feeling is the result of the relaxed teaching style of Dwane Thomas. Through his jokes, his humorous example sentences, and even his mistakes (which we all make from time to time, right?), he helps instill even more than a can-do attitude in your kids...he encourages in them a want-to-do attitude...a delight in learning.
I think the best way for you to understand about Dwane's teaching style and how his classes work is to try it out for yourself. You can view an entire class on his site, complete with printable pdf, and you can even sign up for four free introductory lessons.
Here is part of the first lesson on verbs. You will see how simple it seems, how immediately you get into using the language, how he seamlessly helps you draw connections with your own language, and how he is just a regular guy (like you are a regular person, too) when he makes a mistake and keeps on going...I find it much easier to learn from someone who isn't perfect (but is perfectly suited to teaching!). At the end of the video, you are directed to the worksheet, and when that is completed, you will watch the next video HERE.
Visual Latin | Grammar from Compass Cinema on Vimeo.
You can read more about the instructor, Dwane Thomas, and see what some other students have thought about the program HERE or check out "All the Specs in One Place" to find out about the Scope and Sequence, classes offered (Latin I and II), and formats available for each of the courses (at this time Visual Latin is available as a download for your computer or iPod, or as a DVD).
You can check out the prices at the Compass Store, plus score a few free downloads, too. Each of the two levels comes in three sections for a total of thirty lessons. A download of ten lessons (plus pdf worksheets) will cost you $25.00, while a DVD of the same materials will run you $30.00. The lessons are appropriate for a wide variety of ages, from about age nine to adult (I enjoyed them, for sure!), so this investment will be a solid one for your entire family.
I highly recommend this product. The only thing I can think of to tell you that might impress upon you how highly we did think of this product is to mention that we will be ordering the next ten lessons of Visual Latin next week ourselves because Tex asked me, "Mom, I really want to keep doing this. Can we get some more lessons when the review is over?" Do you think I said anything but a resounding and enthusiastic "Yes!"? Not a chance. Maybe we will see you over at the Compass Store...
If you need more convincing that this is the best language product you will see all year, then head on over to the Homeschool Crew Blog and check out a few more of my Crewmates' reviews HERE.
Disclaimer: We received the first ten lessons of Visual Latin (and the accompanying worksheets) for free for the purposes of reviewing this product here on my blog. The opinions and experiences you read here are my own and those of my family members. I do not guarantee or expect that your experiences will be exactly the same as mine, but you can rest assured that you are reading our honest thoughts about this product.