Learning Greek is supposedly so difficult that when we don't understand something we say, "It's Greek to me." Well, this little intro course is calledIt's Not Greek To Me because its purpose is to demystify Greek just enough to encourage those interested to keep going and undertake a full study of the language of the New Testament.
This is, after all, not a full course. The subtitle is "10 Lessons in Greek," and it merely gets students's feet wet, introducing them to the alphabet, punctuation, voice and mood, nouns and verbs, number and case, and more. The point is to prepare the way for more serious study, and the point of more serious study is nothing less than to better understand the Christian Bible.
How Does This Work?
There are two main elements: theIt's Not Greek To Me DVD, and theIntro to Biblical Greek Parent Lesson Planner. The ten lessons on the DVD are taught by Todd Friel of Wretched Radio who's very funny and engaging. Each runs about fifteen minutes, and has high production values despite being on the minimalist side (it's just Friel in front of a chalkboard).
TheParent Lesson Planner (orPLP) provides lesson plans for 90 days worth of study at 30-45 minutes two to three days a week (the program is worth 1/2 credit for high school language study).An assignment chart which tells students when to use the book and when to watch the DVD lessons, keeping them on track and providing space for recording grades.
Other features of the book include worksheets, practice sheets, and quizzes; worksheets for each video lesson; references to books and online resources for further study; and answers to all written exercises. Each page is perforated for tearing out and is meant to be consumable, though you could easily make copies for more than one student.
Friel begins the video lessons by stating what students willnotlearn—they won't learn how to translate, they won't learn or memorize vocabulary, and they won't learn word endings. His catchphrase for the course is, "Don't memorize, just get it," meaning that the lessons are simply prep work so students will have an edge when studying a more complete program.
Our Honest Opinion
We've seen a lot of Greek prep courses over the years, but never one quite like this. Too many of them are far too limited in scope to really be helpful for those wanting to actually learn Greek at some point, while others are simply too drawn out. This one is brief but engaging, and covers some of the aspects most students will find most off-putting initially.
Friel recommends using William Mounce's books when studying Greek more seriously, and we second that motion. Though this little course is aimed at high schoolers, it can be completed by motivated middle school kids, or by adults who haven't had Greek before but want to get started. If you want to learn biblical Greek in order to better understand God's Word but don't know where to start, we recommend this DVD and workbook set without reservation.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur.Read more of his reviewshere.
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