At the end of this course, students will know the fundamentals of Russian grammar and will be able to use them to read, write, and, most especially, speak Russian on an elementary level. Successful language learning involves both creativity and a certain amount of rote learning; memorization gives the student the basis to then extrapolate, improvise, and have fun with the language. This course will lay equal emphasis on both. Our four hours of class each week will be spent actively using what we know in pair and group activities, dialogues, discussions, etc. Twice-weekly, written homework—serving both to reinforce old and to introduce new material—will be required. At the end of each semester, we will formalize the principle of rigorous but creative communication that underlies all of our work through small-group video projects. Students are required to attend weekly conversation classes with the Russian assistant; attendance at Russian table is strongly encouraged.