January is named after Janus, the Roman god of doorways and transitions who faces forwards and backwards simultaneously.
(A puzzle we asked in class: “Why is one face young and one face old?”)
In January, we’ve continued our study of the classical and mythological sources of Western culture.
This month we focused on:
The Sphinx and her riddle (“What speaks with one voice, is quadrupedal in the morning, bipedal in the afternoon and tripodal in the evening?”)
The meaning of the root GLYPH (‘picture-writing’) with an examination of the Egyptian, Chinese and Mayan glyph systems.
The Echidna and her unusual offspring, including the beautiful spiky-skinned echinoderms (starfish, sea anemones, sea cucumbers and the like).
The Greek root HEDR=face (tetrahedron, octahedron, etc.) and the fascinating story of the five Platonic Solids (aka the regular polyhedra).
We also continued our study of English and Latin grammar in parallel.
The 3rd graders are mastering the indirect statement and indirect question in Latin, as well as practicing the parts of speech (nouns, verbs and adjective) using a new English grammar game.
4th and 5th graders recently learned the distinction between active and passive
Active = the bird defeats the dragon
Passive = the dragon is defeated (by the bird)
The word ‘passive’ has an interesting etymological story. It comes from the root PAS/PATH which means to experience, feel or suffer.
telepathy = the ability to feel thoughts at a distance
sympathy = “together-feel” the ability to understand another’s feelings, to feel those feelings together with them (SYN/SYM = together).
pathology = the study of the negative feelings or sufferings of the body
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