Classical Languages

At Erasmus Primary School students are exposed to and learn various elements of classical languages with particular focus on Sanskrit and Latin.  Various units may also include exposure to Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphs, or songs from other languages and cultures.  Exposure to a range of classical languages at a young age assists with learning modern languages, provides an understanding of the significance of language and assists with learning generally including thinking logically, organising thoughts and extending vocabulary.

Although no longer a commonly spoken language, Sanskrit is considered by many scholars to be the oldest known language and the foundation for ancient languages including Latin and modern languages such as Hindi.  Sanskrit presents a rich source of study and inspiration for children.  It is recognised as having a complete system of grammar connected by logical laws and a beautiful pure sound.

From their first year at school, the children start learning to read, write and speak the unique alphabet script, sounds, words and rules of grammar.  We use a carefully graded series of text books especially developed for use in primary school.  The books use stories from the Sanskrit tradition incorporating tales of Krishna and Rama. Classes also learn and recite songs of praise from inspirational and beautiful texts written in Sanskrit and translated into English including passages from the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita.  These materials are full of spiritual and philosophical significance.

Graduates are well placed to learn languages with different alphabets and scripts at secondary school.

You will find interesting and detailed information about the school's approach to Sanskrit at the St James Sanskrit site.  http://www.sanskritatstjames.org.uk/why-sanskrit#benefits-of-sanskrit

Latin is the root language of French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian and Spanish.  A vast number of English words can be traced to their Latin roots.  Latin study teaches key aspects of language including understanding of logic, vocabulary, word order, verb patterns, agreements, gender and language evolution.  Erasmus Primary School incorporates aspects of Latin language awareness throughout the primary years and offers the Cambridge Latin Course to students in Year 5 and 6 who have attained required English grammar and spelling results.