Plato’s Apology in August 2020, AP Vergil selections in beta

A beta edition for Plato’s Apology continues to be revised and updated for publication here.  If you would like to recommend changes or suggest that particular grammar boxes be added, please let me know. A paperback edition is expected in August 2020.

The Apology volume is designed for the intermediate  collegiate classroom (35 OCT pages in 35 classes) with every 3 commentary pages corresponding to 1 OCT page (Burnet’s edition). Of course, it can be used for independent reading or classes with different pacing as well.

A very incomplete beta commentary of the Advanced Placement (USA) selections for Vergil’s Aeneid is now available here. During the lockdown  a number of readers expressed to me a very strong interest in a free pdf commentary for AP Vergil selections to assist with online instruction, and I agreed to make something available as soon as possible.

This early draft includes 63 lessons (one per day in AP pacing) with text, corresponding vocabulary, and grammatical notes in a two-page format. The notes and vocabulary will be completed revised once the grammar boxes are in place.

Pharr-formatted Ovid’s Ars Amatoria Book 1 now in print and in pdf

J, S. has just published  a Pharr-formatted commentary on Ars Amatoria Book 1, a didactic poem that instructs readers on how to pick up members of the opposite sex. The opening lines are known to be a bit challenging, but if you read ahead just a little, you will be rewarded with a guided tour of the best places to find love in Rome.

If you have enjoyed reading Ovid in the past but never considered Ars Amatoria, it is certainly a great summer read. The paperback is available on Amazon here, and a free pdf of the commentary is available on her website here.

Pharr-formatted Plato’s Philebus now available as pdf and on Amazon

Coauthors G. R., H. N., and B.Z have written a Pharr-formatted commentary for Philebus and made the book available in paperback on Amazon and as a free download here.

There has never been a better time to find a commentary and read Latin and Greek. If we are going to be confined at home, we might as well make the most of it.

A similar update for Ovid’s Ars Amatoria Book 1 will appear in the coming weeks.

How teachers can use the pdf to enhance instruction

Teachers have contacted me and offered a number of ways that they use the pdf to enhance instruction. Below are a few tips worth passing along:

(1) Enlarge the pdf on your desktop and connect the computer to a projector to create a quick and easy presentation.

(2) Enlarge the pdf on the desktop and take screenshot images of the selected text (Mac: shift-command-4, Windows: Snipping tool) to insert in presentations, quizzes, and tests. (Enlarging the pdf improves the image resolution.) This is a very easy way to maintain formatting between the book, presentations, and tests.

(3) Copy and paste the Greek or Latin text to insert in translation quizzes and tests.

(4) Use the search function in the pdf to find relevant grammar constructions throughout the commentary: e.g. search “subj” to find all labeled subjunctive constructions and “dat” to find labeled dative constructions.

(5) If the students have mastered the core vocabulary, copy and paste selected dictionary entries from the corresponding vocabulary sections (e.g. word occurring 3-8 times) as you read to create vocabulary lists for students to review and memorize.

(6) In a secondary school setting, post the pdf (or a link to the pdf) on your class website and ask that students use the paperback in class and pdf at home or vice versa and not carry the book in their book bags. This is an easy way to discourage daily wear-and-tear on your books and yet ensure that students always have access to the commentary.

(7) If you wish to add selected vocabulary to Quizlet or Anki to make flashcards, Quizlet and other programs allow you to copy and paste lists of vocabulary and then ask what punctuation you wish to use to divide up the word from the definition. Choose “:” and within seconds you will convert the vocabulary list copied from the pdf into a functional set of flashcards. Then, simply copy the link to the flashcard set and send it to your students.

If you have any other suggestions to add to this list, please let me know.