Two examples of student work are provided below that demonstrate the difference in quality between an assignment that received a 100% score (green text) and another that received a 50% score.
Assignment: Classical Arithmetic, Lesson 05
1. What book and chapter are you studying in this lesson?
a. In this lesson, I am studying chapter 5 of Nicomachus’s Intro to Arithmetic.
b. The book I am studying with is Nicomachus of Gersae.And the lesson, is lesson 5.
Note: The first answer is clear and well-written, while the second answer is poorly written with grammatical errors.
2. What is the subject of this lesson?
a. The subject of this lesson is why Music and Astronomy are studied after Arithmetic.
b. The subject of this lesson is numbers.
Note: The second answer would be true of any lesson in Arithmetic and lacks the detail provided in the first answer.
3. As you read, outline the content of this lesson, being careful to demonstrate that you have studied the lesson carefully and completely.
a. In this lesson, Nicomachus explains that Music comes after Arithmetic for similar reasons that Geometry should, not just because something absolute comes before something relative, but because musical harmonies and ratios are based on numbers and Arithmetic. Astronomy comes after Arithmetic because everything in it is investigated through the help of Arithmetic. It is later than Geometry because motion comes after rest, and all its calculations, phases, and movements are based on numbers.
b. To outline this lesson I would say: In the first paragraph I read about how diatessaron, diapente, and diapason are all names for numbers and their harmonic ratio's are arithmetical ones. In the second paragraph I read that risings, settings, progressions, retrogressions, and all sorts of phases in astronomy are governed by numerical cycles and quantities.
Notice how the first student identified the main ideas of the lesson and focused on those ideas in the outline. The second outline listed some content and missed the main ideas.
4. List any unknown words or phrases you encounter in this lesson. Look them up in a quality dictionary and add their meaning.
a. I encountered these unknown words in this lesson:
Diatessaron: the interval of a fourth in music.
Diapente: interval of a fifth in music.
Diapason: the interval of an octave.
Retrogressions: the movement of going backward, especially back to a former state.
b. Retrogressions- The action or fact of returning to an inferior or less developed state.
Note: The second student mentions only one word, while terms like "diatessaron", "diapente" and "diapason" are clearly unknown to students. The first students includes a full list of unknown terns, with their definitions, building the vocabulary.
5. Paraphrase the content of this lesson.
a. In this lesson, we learn why Music is studied after Astronomy--because all of its musical scales and ratios come from numbers--and why Astronomy is--because the motions and phases of stars and planets studied in it are also based on numbers. Arithmetic is a mother science to all the rest.
b. To paraphrase the content of this lesson I would say that I learned that diatessaron, diapente, and diapason are all names for numbers and their harmonic ratio's are arithmetical ones. And again like in the lessons before the "mother" science is Arithmetic.
Note: Again, the first student identifies the main ideas of the lesson, while the second student lists some content and neglects to mention the main ideas.