The influence of the Latin language in many modern languages, including English, is beyond doubt. English borrowed from Latin during the Old English era, either directly or through other Romantic languages; consequently the understanding of Latin engenders a better understanding of the English language. Moreover, Latin terminology is crucial to a number of various academic fields, as diverse as medicine, theology and law.
During Key Stage 3, students explore a variety of themes which include everyday life in Pompeii, gladiators and slavery and freedom in ancient Rome. In addition, their knowledge of grammatical structures becomes more rich and complex, as they learn more about Latin tenses, declensions and morphology in general.
In Year 10, the subject becomes optional for those students who wish to take the GCSE examination. GCSE Latin is a rare qualification and highly recommended for students who intend to pursue studies in a directly related field such as Classics; for those it would be an excellent addition to their CV. Latin at GCSE level is a demanding, but eventually very rewarding venture, as students’ ability to translate a Latin text is mastered and they become familiar with higher poetry and verse literature (current GCSE students are reading Virgil’s Aeneid).
The study of Latin is a highly beneficial and important inclusion in the students’ curriculum as it sharpens their linguistic ability and also develops their logical thinking and their understanding of classic civilizations.