Learning a classical language requires regular memorisation not just of new vocabulary but also the way the endings of the words change (accidence) and the ways in which sentences are constructed (syntax). This is a skill that not all students have developed confidently at school and so emphasis is given in the early stages to developing good working habits and training the mind to become better at doing this. Experience has shown that the following are useful tips.
- Find yourself a study buddy. Not only can you test each other on new vocabulary and noun and verb endings, but it is also very revealing to see how well you can explain a topic to someone else.
- Investigate flash cards: make your own using index cards or look on the web – memrise and cram.com are liked, and can be used on your phone. Better still is the Greek Project, hosted by Eton College, which has up to section 7. You should reckon on spending about three ten minute sessions per day on vocabulary and noun and verb endings.
- In addition to getting on top of new material, EVERY DAY you should devote a small amount of time on going over previous material. Be methodical about this. Keep a record of what you have looked back on and how secure it is.
- Vocabulary: you should keep a note book or equivalent list for words that you have forgotten.
- Noun and verb endings: make sure you can write them out quickly and accurately.
- When you come across an area which is not as secure as you thought, spend time rereading the explanation in the text and look over your notes again. Rework the associated exercises and check your answers from when you did them the first time.
- If you are still unclear seek help from the course tutor. Usually, confusion can be sorted out very quickly on a one-to-one basis.
It is important that vocabulary and grammar are learnt thoroughly and at the time of setting – not left to the last minute – and that material is consolidated on a weekly basis.