Paul Nitz: Communicative Greek in Malawi

Devenios Doulenios
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Joined: May 31st, 2011, 5:11 pm
Location: Carlisle, Arkansas, USA

Re: Paul Nitz: Communicative Greek in Malawi

Post by Devenios Doulenios » May 12th, 2016, 7:57 pm

Χαιρε, ω φιλε Σαυλε! Thanks so much for sharing your experiences. I'm not a Greek teacher but am always interested in learning more about communicative approaches to learning Greek, as I am continuing slowly to add those to my own self study. I have seen a couple of your videos you shared on Google Plus, and am pleased to tell you that I understood almost everything spoken in Greek, although my formal Greek training was only with the grammar-translation method.

It seems to me that, to the extent that this is possible, you are approaching Greek as a real language as you teach and that you're encouraging the students to do likewise. If so, it should not be surprising that reading ability would be limited during the first couple of years, as the emphasis of a communicative approach is to learn basic structures, to speak the language and to understand what is spoken, with less emphasis on reading and composition. If I might compare it with a modern language (I have a working knowledge of four, with high fluency in two), this is exactly how I learned Spanish and French in high school and German in college. It wasn't until after I was fluent to an extent in speaking and in listening comprehension that I was exposed to literature. And in fact when I did start to read literature, I was able to do so more easily because I already had some fluency in speaking and understanding the spoken language.

Before that, I only had short, simple readings and only did a little writing. And it is important to note that there was almost no translation work before I was an advanced student (in college) and that grammar was learned as much in context of conversational material as directly. If we are serious about learning Greek, and want to be able to help people read and understand the Greek Bible and other Ancient Greek literature, treating Greek as a real language and using methods that help people acquire it as a real language is the way to go. That's not to say that other methods can't or shouldn't be used, but that they should occupy less space in the curriculum. It is to say that to achieve what we say we want to achieve, we need to do what really works and what helps more of our students accomplish their goals.

Just my two drachmas/denarii,

Δεβένιος Δουλένιος
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Dewayne Dulaney
Δεβένιος Δουλένιος


"Ὁδοὶ δύο εἰσί, μία τῆς ζωῆς καὶ μία τοῦ θανάτου."--Διδαχή Α, α'

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Re: Paul Nitz: Communicative Greek in Malawi

Post by DonatusMagister » August 18th, 2017, 12:56 pm

The link doesn't work anymore. Is there another one?
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Donaciano Pardo
IES Gabriel García Márquez
Greek and Latin Department
Madrid (Spain)

Jason Hare
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Joined: June 2nd, 2011, 5:28 pm
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel

Re: Paul Nitz: Communicative Greek in Malawi

Post by Jason Hare » August 18th, 2017, 4:06 pm

Paul-Nitz wrote:
May 9th, 2016, 9:35 am
Here's an updated link for the list of vocabulary I created for my class.
CORE COMMUNICATIVE GREEK Vocabulary.xlsx ... ulary.xlsx
Looking back, I think Donaciano was talking about this link.

Paul, do you have an updated link for the core vocabulary list?

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Jason A. Hare
Tel Aviv, Israel

Posts: 495
Joined: June 1st, 2011, 4:19 am
Location: Lilongwe, Malawi

Re: Paul Nitz: Communicative Greek in Malawi

Post by Paul-Nitz » August 30th, 2017, 10:00 am

My apologies. I've been traveling.

Here is a link to a shared folder (google) containing:

Core Communicative Greek Vocabulary.xlsx : A list I chose out of Major's list and New Testament frequency lists. I added to that some essential communicative words. Note several tabs.

Ancient Greek Phrasebook.xlsx: This is a compilations of lists from Schole and other places and some of my own additions. Note there are several tabs.

Devotional: Some test files with devotional Greek (Lord's prayer, creeds, liturgy). ... 2lpM3M0Ujg

Let me know if you have trouble accessing the folder or individual files.
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Paul D. Nitz - Lilongwe Malawi

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