various words in isolation for flash cards


New Member
Hi there,

I'm a homeschooling mom and need help proofreading the Latin flash cards I have made for my grammar school daughter and her class.
(Please stop cringing. Although I only started studying Latin this past month in an effort to be a better homeschooler, I've got a good working knowledge of a Russian, Spanish, and German, and I've studied French, Chinese and Arabic, so I can be taught.) :D

Part of my daughter's memory work for her grammar school homeshool group is John 1.1-7 from the Vulgate. The weekly assignments for now are rote vocabulary memorization, with only a few words being assigned each week. The problem is that the words are given in isolation, without regard to number, gender, part of speech, etc., and often a one-word definition is given.

ut - that
quod - that
ipso - him
ipsum - him
eam - it
(dreadful, right?)

Since the lessons are geared toward elementary school children who are simply not ready for "3rd person singular feminine, ablative case" explaining the vocabulary is not practical. But I do not want to teach words in isolation on flash cards in an incorrect context.

Edit: These flash cards all have images. This is what I need help with - making sure the image fits the translation.

Would some benevolent Latin scholar care to assist and proofread my flash cards? I could post a link to the pdfs (once I edit them so that the English and the Latin appear on the same side).

Thanks in advance for any assistance.

Imber Ranae

Ranunculus Iracundus
I'm sure we have people who would be willing to look them over for you. I'm not sure how you intend to represent the meanings of pronouns and conjunctions pictorially, though.


Staff member
Yes, you'll find it virtually impossible to represent things like pronouns, conjunctions and prepositions with flashcards. Stick to nouns, verbs and adjectives.
The good news is that flashcard images are not language specific (except to a limited extent), and you can get a fair idea of what images to use just by looking at examples already out there.


New Member
Here are a few of the files. I hope it's OK to link directly to the page.
The actual flash card is in color, with the translation (from the back side) underneath.

NOTE: I CANNOT change the underlined words or the corresponding underlined translations, I may only change the phrase I put with the underlined word or the images that I choose to depict the translations. All the vocabulary is straight from the Vulgate, John 1.1-7, and the translation is provided by the curriculum.

Thanks again for any help! More pdf's to come.



Staff member
There are a number of problems with the Latin, in one case with the underlined word and its translation.

Imber Ranae

Ranunculus Iracundus
A few corrections to the Latin:

Porcus est apud amicos (apud takes the accusative)​
Amici sunt sine Porco (sine takes the ablative)​
Porcus est in quasillo (quasillum means 'basket')​
ut [videat] / ut [legat]​
(the subjunctive in the correct person and number is required with an ut purpose clause)​
Concerning the translations:

Was it a conscious choice not to use articles in the English translations?​

cum (with ablative) is the usual word for 'with' in Latin. With multiple people apud typically means 'among', though with a single person it can mean 'with' in the sense of 'by/at the side of' or even 'at the place of'.​
I know the KJV translates διὰ/per as 'by', but they're both more accurately rendered as 'through'. Maybe that kind of precision isn't necessary at this point, though.​
Pōmum means a fruit in general rather than specifically an apple (māla).​


Staff member
A further correction:
facta per ipsum/made by him - besides the problem Imber Ranae mentions with per, you've underlined the wrong word in the English.
I'm not sure I'd find some of the cards particularly easy to understand if I was a child, but then I never responded well to flashcards myself anyway.
Was it a conscious choice not to use articles in the English translations?​
I suspect Pig, Cow etc. are intended as names.


New Member
Imber Ranae,

Thank you!!

I'll examine this in detail when I have more time. Here is the word list that we were given. This is the only information the children are given. Additionally, we have the Latin Vulgate, and the English translation that the curriculum masters have created. It's not a known KJV/NIV/etc. translation.
I may not like it, but this is what I have to work with.

in - in
apud - with
per - through
sine - without
et - and
ut - that
sed - but
hic, hoc - this
ipso, ipsum - him
cui - whose
quod - that
eam - it
illum - him
erat - was
sunt - are
est - is
venit - came
perhiberet - bear
crederent - believe
factum - made
missus - sent
comprehenderunt - comprehended
lucet - shineth
fuit - there was
verbum - word
Deus, Deum, Deo - God
principio - beginning
omnia, omnes - all
nihil - nothing

GTG - The baby going off in the back room, and I can't hit snooze... I'll be back.


New Member
Aurifex -
Ahh! I see the problem. I had done a copy/paste for "ipsum"with the thought that I could use all three vocabulary words (facta, per, and ipsum) with one image. But perhaps not. The vocabulary word "per" is translated "through" in the handbook we have.
Specifically, "omnia per ipsum facta sunt..." - "all things were made through him..."

I had a lot of trouble coming up with a phrase for "per" = "through." The kids want to say "through" as in "through a hoop", but that is not accurate. Or is it? I made another card with Ursus listening through headphones. Is "Ursus audit per illum" accurate? The card is in file 3b, attached here.

quod - that; Bubo indicat quod. (Owl points to that.)
cui - whose; Porcus, cui colera est pink! (Pig, whose color is pink!)
per - through; Ursus audit per illum. ( Bear hears through it. - if it works, I also need a flash card for "illum")
eam - it ; Ursus videt eam. (Bear sees it)

And yes, I used "pink" instead of translating "pink" into Latin. I'm working with 10-year-olds, and there's only so many additional words they can navigate.

I feel like I have a good opportunity to help lay a proper Latin foundation with these words and I don't want the children I'm teaching (ages 9-11, and my daughter, age 6) to learn sloppy and easy (google) translation. You help is really invaluable.

Imber Ranae - I'll make the changes you suggest. :) And yes, the puppets' names are the nouns they represent. All my daughter's puppets' names are simple: Pig, Dog, Owl, Ladybug, Bat, etc. The only one that has a proper Christian name is the 3-headed dragon (Horace, Winifred, and Cecil). I chose Pig to help me tutor the Latin portion of our instruction, and he invited his friends.
I chose pōmum for apple because I needed a neuter noun for the "hoc" flash card, and I had apples in the house I could use in the photos.

About the curriculum: While I appreciate that the curriculum designers want to introduce the children to Latin, and the Vulgate is as good a place as any for some rote memorization, I disagree with the nouns in isolation without any explanation of grammar rules.
Am I being overly sensitive? I'm probably the more egg-headed of all the homeschooling moms I know... (nttawwt)



Staff member
Kinnera, the latest set of cards arguably has the most problems. Even if the Latin and translations were free of faults, which sadly they're not, things like the translation of eam as "it" are likely to leave young children quite confused when they later encounter is, id, illud, eum, ea etc. with the meaning "it" too. quod can translate as "that", especially in the Vulgate, but it can't be "that" in the sentence you have supplied. cui can translate as "whose", but singular "whose" is more often cuius.

This looks increasingly like a well-meaning but ill-advised attempt at producing tailor-made teaching materials from original Latin sources. You refer several times to the curriculum designers. I don't know who these people are, but are they aware of the severe shortcomings of these flashcards in their present state?

Imber Ranae

Ranunculus Iracundus
Porcus, cui color est [pink (puniceus)]

Bubo indicat quod won't work because quod needs to introduce a dependent clause. quod isn't a demonstrative pronoun, as you seem to understand it: that would rather be illud.

In the end I have to agree with Aurifex. The pictures are cute and creative, but I fear they're too indirect to be very helpful as pedagogical tools. I feel that pictorial flashcards might offer some advantage if used with the right material, but this sort of vocabulary selected from the Vulgate hardly seems suited to such an approach.


New Member
Aw, nuts. I was really hoping to make it work.

Aurifex - the curriculum designers only supplied the Latin Vulgate for John 1.1-7, their own translation, and the vocabulary word list. I invented all the flash cards as a means to help the kids memorize the words. But after I put them together, I realized that I might be doing more harm than good - which it seems, you are telling me, is the case.

Imber Ranae & Aurifex - thank you for your comments. Perhaps after I've put some time into the study of Latin, I can come up with something more practical. In many ways I've felt like one of those monkeys in a room with a typewriter trying to write Shakespeare. And I don't have that long... So, unless you think there's some way I can make it work, I'll put the flash card idea aside for now. This means I'll have to go back to only the word list with matching the translations.

Moving forward: I have Wheelock's Latin and Familia Romana, and intend to spend 30 minutes a day studying. I don't see myself realistically being able to do more at this time. Is there any other text or website you would recommend?