[b-greek] Teaching Greek to non-English-primary students

From: Perry L. Stepp (stratfink@email.msn.com)
Date: Fri Sep 08 2000 - 09:46:29 EDT

"non-English-primary" is probably not the right term.

I have an interesting dilemma. I am teaching introductory Greek to a group
of students, most of whom seem to be catching it quite well. But I have one
student for whose primary language is not English but French. I (of course)
know no French beyond "dijonnaise" <g>.

Has anyone else encountered this? How did you handle it? Is there a good

He spoke to me yesterday about the biggest problem he has in following along
in class: everything I say in English, he has to translate into French in
his head. This is especially difficult when I am describing syntax for the
students in English terms: "In English, we would say, 'John from Georgia.'
In Greek, they would use a genitive. In English, we would say, 'paper
sack.' In Greek, they would use a genitive--'sack of paper.'"

When I do this, I can see the smoke begin to seep from his ears--he's having
to make an extra step with every example to get it across the language
barrier. The same thing happens when I write common noun constructions on
the board: EN TWi IERWi is pretty simple for most of my students, but for
him it's a full day's work.

Any suggestions?

Perry L. Stepp

Pastor, DeSoto Christian Church
Ph.D. Candidate (ABD), Baylor University
Adjunct Professor, Dallas Christian College
Adjunct Professor, Christ for the Nations Institute

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed
Nor wind to blow.

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