First Time Teacher

Gene Baker ekbaker at
Sat Sep 1 21:30:08 EDT 2001

  Hi Chris,

  Welcome to the list.

  I also tried to lead a group through a beginning grammar and had the same
rate of unsuccess.  However, the weakness of meeting once a week is not a
problem with which you will have to contend.

  My first year Greek prof. gave us credit for 100 minutes of study about
twice a week when we didn't have a written exercise.  It was up to us to
keep track of the time, and we could do it in small increments throughout
the day.  So you could spot the Greek students as the people with the packs
of vocabulary cards, drilling each other in the cafeteria line, or any place
there was a bit of free time.  The nice thing about that technique was that
it gave everyone an opportunity to get the same credit as maxing a quiz.  If
you only got in 60 minutes, you got 60% credit.

  He also worked in some tidbits of information on familiar passages of
Scripture to illustrate how understanding the language opened up the text to
the reader.  During the second semester we translated through First John.

  We had a lot of encouragement in our Greek studies from other professors
who emphasized the importance of learning the original languages if we were
to be authoritative in our appeal to the text.  I don't recall ever hearing
a negative comment from any faculty member regarding the time or effort
required to learn the language.

  It seems to me that a few credits are not sufficient motivation to learn
such a complex language.  Few of my fellow students dropped out;  maybe one
or two.  The desire to understand the New Testament was the main motivation,
(and, of course, participating in the fellowship of sufferings in the

  I also agree that daily work is very important.

  You are in the right place to tap into experience.  There is probably a
millennium of teaching experience on this list, but right at the time many
of the owners of the experience are busy beginning new classes. (Some of
these folks are so smart I'm amazed they allow me to be on the same list
with them.)

  kindest regards,

  Gene Baker
  Sterling, IL
-----Original Message-----
From: Christopher L Lang <langc at>
To: Biblical Greek <b-greek at>
Date: Friday, August 31, 2001 4:39 PM
Subject: [b-greek] First Time Teacher

>I am a new subscriber to this list and a first time teacher of Greek. I
>have not taught a language before and have been given the responsibility
>of creating the curriculum for Intro Greek.
>I am interested in using Mounce's Basics of Biblical Greek but open to
>others. (I learned from the Joint Association of Classical Teachers and JW
>Wenham.) We will be on a quarter system and I'm curious to know what
>others think is a reasonable pace for such a course.
>I should also tell you that the class is being offered through our church
>in conjunction with a divinity school extension program. Therefore the
>class will meet only once or twice a week for three hours each. Any ideas
>what to expect here and what level of competency to shoot for?
>Chris[topher L Lang  New list-members: please note that list protocol
>requires a full-name signature to be appended to messages sent to the list
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