Monday, August 23, 2021


I am a huge fan of efficiency. Aren't you? Waste is never a good thing. The more efficient we are, the more we accomplish with less energy. We were designed to be efficient. One problem with the plethora of new beginning Greek textbooks is TMI (too much information). For a person who is efficiency-minded, you want the most efficient guide to Greek. Otherwise, "analysis paralysis" ensues. This is where you are hopelessly stuck trying to decide what information is necessary.

Tonight we will cover chapter 14 of my grammar. It will be an efficient overview of the subject matter. Subject matter that belongs in a second year grammar will remain in a second year grammar. 


I see an analogy with the sport of running. (You knew running would come up, right?) Most beginning runners do too much, too soon. Tendons and ligaments need lots of time for build-up of strength. Our bones build up even slower than our tendons and ligaments. Any one of these can easily be overstressed by doing too much, too soon. 

To reiterate: slowing down and concentrating on what's most important at an early stage will reap benefits in the future. I ask my students to concentrate on the chapter at hand. Don't read ahead. Master the material before moving on. Build your stamina gradually. 

So you've completed first-year Greek? Go on to an intermediate grammar. Then take my Advanced Greek Grammar course (class starts tomorrow!). The absolute most important thing is to be efficient. Don't expend energy on things that are secondary or tertiary when you're still mastering the basics. 

Remember what every marathoner knows when the race starts: If you don't feel like you are starting too slow, you're starting too fast.