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A Journey with Latin

All year long I’ve been studying Latin. I’m homeschooled and my dad wanted me to learn it so I could have a better appreciation for how much it used to be used. My mom’s my teacher so she found an online Latin course with videos and worksheets and started teaching the language to my brother and me while learning it herself. She even takes all the tests with us.

Around November last year, I made an account on Duolingo. It wasn’t my first time on here, I’d used Duolingo a little in the past to learn Spanish, but it was the first time for a good while. This time I came on to use Duolingo as a supplement to my other Latin course.

Before I started adding Duolingo to my Latin journey, I could barely stumble through a sentence filled with basic words I’d learned. I hated the cases with a half my soul. It’s now been a little over fifty days on Duolingo. I say a little over because I lost my first small streak when my dad had us kids leave all our phones at home over our epic vacation. In those fifty days, I’ve used reposition to the extreme and consistent learning. My consistent learning was to the extreme that I never once used a streak freeze even though I always have one equipped. Because of the way I’ve been learning, I can now read a basic sentence almost immediately.

Although I never want to speak Latin, with it being a dead language as my grandpa, a linguistic expert assured me, I’d love to be able to fluently read and write in it. Duolingo may not get me all the way there, but it sure is a nice first step.

January 27, 2020



I just wanna say, I think that's awesome. Sure, it's not so common to find someone who understands Latin but I think it's really cool! Latin's one of my languages to learn, but I doubt I'll seriously learn it until later or something. But I think it's awesome you're learning it!

(Sorry, I rant and am also a very awkward person)


I seriously encourage you to start learning now! It is really a great language!

And don’t worry about whether or not you seemed awkward. I’m a homeschooler! Awkward is in the job description lol


Way to go! Keep that streak going, and you'll become even more of a Latin ace.

And when you've finished the course and would like more Latin to study/enjoy, ask for suggestions on the Forum.



Thanks for the advice and encouragement!


You're welcome. Your Visual Latin course looks interesting, from what I've seen online since you replied to slvandee. Thanks for the reference.


Question: What curriculum have you been studying with home schooling? Has it helped lay a foundation so that DuoLingo is more productive/enjoyable?

I'm trying to learn Latin myself so that I can help teach it to our kids when that day comes.

You might want to try supplementing it with... Lingua Latina Familia Romana or Henle. Good luck in your studies, and glad to hear you had an epic vacation without your phone! I wish I could do the same, even if it cost me my streak!


It’s called Visual Latin. Very much so. I feel like it teaches me Latin and Duolingo gives me a platform to practice that Latin.

That’s really cool!

I may try more courses for Latin next year, but I’m really busy with a part time job and my schoolwork right now. Yeah, it was my family’s first vacation in several years.


That is pretty cool, thanks for sharing. I would like to point out that, even though I understand what you mean by Latin being a "dead language", if you have any interest in (or if you speak any) romance languages, you are going to get a much deeper understanding of them if you know Latin. Many, many MANY words, expressions and structures in those languages come from Latin. My mother tongue is portuguese, and every new Latin lesson I take gives me some sort of insight in my own mother tongue. Isn't this amazing?


Yeah, in my main course I take, each test has a portion where new words are introduced and you have to translate them based on what their English version is. I also find it much easier to understand Harry Potter spells xD


That's great to hear! Really gives me more motivation to continue my studies in Latin.


While I love your story and I wish you all the best in your endeavors I'm going to nitpick one thing:

Although I never want to speak Latin, with it being a dead language as my grandpa, a linguistic expert assured me

Being a "dead language" might not mean what you think it means. Being "dead" doesn't mean that it's not spoken, it literally means that it's no longer the native language of a people and thusly learned at birth. Latin has been around for a long time and is actively taught in a huge number of schools world-wide, and is the language of the Vatican and still highly prevalent in the Catholic Church.

Additionally, the Internet has helped enable somewhat of a resurgence in a large number of otherwise obscure courses of knowledge, Latin being one, so while it may be "dead" in the linguistical sense, it's most definitely not as dead as your grandpa.


Nevertheless, it is, by definition, dead. That doesn’t mean that some bilinguals speak it, but it does mean it has no native speakers. That being said, I don’t think I’ll ever have a wish to travel to a Latin speaking country and will only use the language for literature. That’s why I don’t care much to speak it.

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