Foundations for Latin

A New Way to Learn Latin

Welcome to the Paideia Institute’s Elementa© curriculum! Elementa offers elementary and middle schools the opportunity to incorporate Latin into literacy instruction. The curriculum is flexible as a supplement to current English classes or as an independent and robust program building the foundations for exploring both modern and ancient world languages. Active learning materials and scripted lessons make the Elementa curriculum fun, engaging, and simple to use.

Through Elementa, we teach the basics of Latin grammar and vocabulary in such a way that provides students with the tools to improve their mastery of English and Spanish (and other languages!), but an equally crucial goal of the curriculum is to expose students to Roman culture and inspire their curiosity for the ancient world at large. Elementa can be used by teachers of all backgrounds regardless of their previous experience with Latin.

How Elementa Improves Student Outcomes

For decades, studies have found that Latin instruction helps students achieve better results at all levels of schooling. For example, a study of over 4,000 students in Philadelphia found that just 20 minutes of Latin instruction per day showed students reading a full grade level above those who did not receive Latin instruction.

Over the last decade of teaching Latin and Ancient Greek to students from all backgrounds and age groups, the Paideia Institute has achieved similar results.

While some may consider Latin a “dead” language, in this way, it is very much alive. Language is the stuff of thought, and Latin forms the foundation for 60% of the English language. Students who successfully complete Elementa will perform better on standardized tests, achieve higher in-class marks in grammar and writing, and lay valuable foundations for success in biology, history, literature, and more. They will find they are able to think more critically, engage with more challenging material, and speak and write more clearly in all their classes, not just Latin.


What grade levels is Elementa for?

Elementa is designed to be accessible for students as early as 3rd grade and spans through 8th grade, along with our sequel Elementa II: Nexts Steps in Latin.

What if we don’t have a Latin program? What if we already have a Latin program?

Elementa can be implemented as a full Latin classroom solution, a Latin-elective, after-school, or extra-credit option for select students, or as a literacy and language support tool in English or History classes.

Do you have options for more advanced students?

Yes! We also offer Living Latin, an online and print immersive solution that covers the first three years of high school Latin.

What if we need additional learning or pacing support?

On-demand training, professional development, and support is a part of the Elementa experience from the outset. Beyond included training on program navigation and use, further professional development can be arranged to meet your specific campus or district needs.

Why should students learn a dead language?

Latin’s not really dead—at least not as long as we speak English, Spanish, or any Romance language spoken across the world today! More than 60% of English words derive from Latin, and knowing the meanings of Latin prefixes, roots, and suffixes aligns with national ELA standards and has literacy benefits for both native and non-native English learners alike.

Every teacher’s real goal is not just to teach students content, but to teach them how to learn. Latin’s highly structured form, grammar and morphology improves students' critical thinking and writing skills by training them to pay attention to every aspect of language.

What Teachers Are Saying

"Implementing Elementa into my classroom has engrossed my students into learning Latin through a new lens. This curriculum is jam-packed with engaging, fun activities for middle school students. It is nice to have something that helps my students become efficient in their grammatical studies in both Latin and English. It is a refreshing teaching experience and Elementa has beautifully woven a way to enhance the Latin learning experience for younger, curious students."

- Joseph Starnes, Washington Latin Public School

I LOVE Elementa! I used it as a guide for a sixth-grade Introduction to Latin course. It worked so well with my teaching style! And I used some of the activities when I taught a section of Intro French!

- Chelsea Brewer, Christ Church Episcopal School