Reviewing Latin Homework

Currently, I’m teaching an intensive introductory to Latin course at the college level and I’m unsure about how much to review homework in class.  When I taught Latin before, I spent too much time reviewing every sentence of the homework in excruciating detail–excruciating for me and the students who seemed bored out of their minds and to be not learning wel through this–so I wanted to use less class time on reviewing homework with my current course.  Initially, I had students review homework with a partner or we would go over troubling sentences as a class.  This practice freed up class time so that we could spend more time introducing and reviewing new material.

However, I happened to put one of their homework sentences on a quiz, and the translations for that sentence were not very encouraging.  Therefore, I decided to review homework more carefully in class, as a class.  That way we can nip bad habits in the bud and correct errors, instead of potentially allowing the blind to lead the blind when correcting homework in groups.  Admittedly, these are good students and group work is very valuable, so some errors may have been caught by going over the homework in groups.

Now that we are going over more homework as a class, I feel like we are spending a lot of time reviewing homework.  It is eating into how much time we can introduce and practice with the new material.  In an intensive class, I really value the in-class practice on new concepts that I give my students.

I do collect homework at least once every week, but the class meets five days a week.  Only providing feedback of any sort on collected homework once/week in a five days/week class, though, may allow bad habits to fester, so I hesitate to only rely on collected homework.

What methods do you use to solve this catch-22 situation regarding valuable class time?  What would you encourage me to do more of? What would you encourage me to do less of?


One thought on “Reviewing Latin Homework

  1. One of the things I do is keep particular learning goals up front in my mind. So when we review homework, regardless of what the specific project was, I always try to draw insights from it out into the broader context of the course. Yes, this is obvious, but by keeping the “30,000 foot view” I am able to keep us moving. While there are almost always particulars of each project that are wrong or could be improved, at least I can feel the tide of learning rise in the sense of the whole course. This background informs my project development and my evaluation rubrics – there are specific project goals and then there are a few ways in which the project is meant to push the learning goals. I’d rather them get the learning goals at the expense of the individual project than the other way around.


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