While Sacred Heart Greenwich offers in-person Arabic, French, Mandarin, and Spanish classes, students who choose to take Latin enroll in the online course through SophieConnect. Mr. John Martone, Upper School Theology Teacher, teaches the Latin I/II and Latin III/IV students grammar and syntax, as well as the culture and history of the Romans.
“What appeals to me most about teaching asynchronously is the freedom which it affords me to design courses that, due to the limitations of time and location on both students and me, would normally not be able to run,” Mr. Martone said. “With an asynchronous model, students are much more easily able to take courses that they usually would not even be able to consider, and so they can be exposed to materials and even entire disciplines which might be of interest to them sooner rather than later (or never).”
While SophieConnect requires extensive planning from the teachers, Mr. Martone feels that it affords both teachers and students the freedom to teach and learn in a unique environment. Mr. Martone teaches several students from network schools, which adds a global aspect to the classes.
“I teach numerous students from schools through the Sacred Heart network,” Mr. Martone said. “It is quite interesting for me to note the similarities in the approach of these students to their work to students here in Greenwich. I’ve only had a couple of time-zone issues with students from different parts of the country. Apart from that, it’s been pretty easy to work with students from other schools.”
Sophomore Daphne Hartch, a Latin IV student, chose to continue Latin after enrolling at Sacred Heart at the beginning of her freshman year. Daphne began learning Latin in middle school as a student at the Greenwich Country Day School.
“My teacher, Mr. Martone, posts videos about new topics, which can be watched and rewatched at any time,” Daphne said. “Also, we stick to the textbook very closely, which is a good way to understand what is happening even though the class is never together physically. My favorite aspect of an online course being able to choose when I take tests and do homework. Every Sunday we get assigned the work for the following week. That makes the class very enjoyable, because I can complete the assignments when I would like to do so.”
Featured Image Courtesy of sophieconnect.org