It is that time of the year – registration for Greek School at the Cathedral today and tomorrow, with the traditional Sept. 14 agiasmo service kicking off the year and classes starting the next day. Greek School can be tough for parents – everyone’s schools seemingly get out at different times, some parents live several towns aways, etc. But I think it is well worth sending our children to the Cathedral’s Greek Afternoon School. Here are a few reasons:
-First of all, it is a good thing to learn a foreign language. Americans are not great at this, but I think a big reason is that each state speaks the same language (think Europe, where most neighboring states speak different languages and people tend to know more than one). Greek is a heritage language for many of us at the Cathedral, but learning modern Greek opens the door to learning one of the great classical languages. I can tell you that I did very well on my verbal SATs partly because if I didn’t know a word I could figure it out from Greek roots.
-Our school is accredited, and the teachers are certified in teaching Greek. Our students can receive credit in school for these classes. I should also mention that our teachers are awesome – tireless, dedicated, super-smart and able to make every day fresh and interesting. Unlike my Greek School experience many years ago, our students are tracked – those who speak Greek at home go on one path, and those who don’t are put on another so they learn at the appropriate pace.
-Greek School at the Cathedral is more than just language. The students learn religion, history and cultural stuff like dances and poems. It is a great supplement to Sunday School and other ministries – time spent with fellow students in Greek School means more time at the church and more time with their church friends.
-The various performances during the year get the students comfortable with public speaking in high-pressure situations. I know that memorizing and reciting poems as a little kid helped prepare me for what I do now; I am very comfortable speaking in public, and I am sure that those early performances (which I dreaded back in the day) were part of it.
I could go on with reasons. Greek School is worth the driving and time commitment – we are blessed to have such a program.