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Saturday, June 01, 2013

Eleven Plus Changes

I sometimes feel that it is a pity that eleven plus children are not encouraged to learn a language. Would there be a huge outcry? I wonder.

Exercise One

Translate some of the following:

Germani  cum Romanis fortiter pugnarverunt.  Milites audacious resitere ac fortius incipunt.

 We know that pugnacious is something to do with being ready to fight. We can probably also guess that the German tribes and the Romans were unhappy with each other.

We also know that audacious means very bold or daring. There is also the word resitere which may have something to do with resistance. Could milites have a connection with military?

Put an eleven plus child onto the trail – and excite the child with the possibility of discovering and deciphering words – and then sit back and enjoy the enthusiasm. This may be a lot more interesting than asking for the anonyms of a series of ten words.

Example Two

Translate some of the following:

Metode: 1 koppie gesnayde artapples. 4 koppies warm melk. 2 eetlepels botter, 1 teelepel sout, 1 eatlepel meel, a paar stukkies uie, peper en sout. Kook alles saam.

Translating this passage may challenge some children – but if they were helped with understanding where words come from, then new worlds may open up.

What, for example, could the word metode be? Of course, method.

`koppies warm melk’ – would this be something to do with cups of milk?

Could we guess at `peper en sout’?

Much of the present eleven plus seems to be a series of exercises aimed at imparting knowledge. Why can’t the eleven plus child enjoy learning without being burdened with a large number of explanations and cautions?

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