Hall in Baths of Diocletian reopened.

Don’t think I’ve ever taken a party of students to the Baths of Diocletian. Anyway, if you are going there, there’s something else to see now. From USA Today (with photo)

ROME (AP) — A huge hall in the ancient baths of Diocletian reopens in Rome after 30 years.

The hall underwent structural restoration. It contains ancient tombs dating to the 2nd century A.D.

One of the tombs on display has a vault surface covered with circles and is decorated with geometric and flower motifs. The other features niches for the ashes of the deceased and graffiti with their names.

Archaeologists said that the hall is believed to have served as a recreational room. Its marbles and decorations have been lost over the centuries.

The bath complex was built between 298 and 306 A.D. Including libraries, gardens and areas dedicated to shows and games, it could accommodate up to 3,000 people.

How Latin is taught at Wakefield (North Carolina)

RALEIGH – At times you might not be sure whether you’re in a Latin class or an art class in Karen Guy’s classroom at Wakefield High School.

Guy’s Latin students frequently can be found sprawled on the classroom floor or out in the hallway applying their drawing skills.

But there’s a method to Guy’s approach, which might explain why recently she was named the K-12 Teacher of the Year by the Foreign Language Association of North Carolina (FLANC).

“Latin is not just translating conversations,” said Guy, whose room is adorned with posters about ancient Rome. “It’s history and culture — Roman history and the evolution of the English language.”

Guy has been trying to make Latin fun for Wakefield students since she started teaching there when the school opened in 2000.

Karen Tharrington, the former Second Language department chairwoman at Wakefield, credits Guy’s enthusiasm with stimulating interest in Latin at the North Raleigh school.

What started with one class of 25 students has expanded into 150 students a semester with a second Latin teacher hired to handle the demand.

“All the other languages come from Latin,” said Malik Webb, 15, a sophomore at Wakefield and one of Guy’s students. “Learning this was a better choice. Plus, it will help me with the SAT.”

The growing popularity of Latin at Wakefield is matched by a national resurgence.

The number of students taking Advanced Placement Latin exams has risen 50 percent this decade, reaching 8,700 in 2007.

More than 150,000 students in the United States applied to take the National Latin Exam in 2008, compared to 6,000 in 1977.

Latin is the third-most-taught foreign language in North Carolina public schools, after Spanish and French.

It has turned into a perfect match for Guy, who has been intrigued by Latin since she was a fifth-grader studying vocabulary. She kept noticing that many of the words had Latin roots.

Guy became hooked on Latin when she took the language for the first time in eighth-grade. It soon turned into a desire to become a Latin teacher to share her love of the classical language with other students.

But Guy doesn’t teach it the way she learned it, which was heavy on translations. Her students will still translate Julius Caesar’s speeches. But she’ll also have them read Latin stories and draw them, complete with Latin captions.

Guy said the drawings have turned into a good release for her students.

Guy has helped ease Ally Prior’s fears about learning Latin.

“She’s amazing,” said Prior, 16, a junior. “I was scared that Latin was going to be so hard. She explains everything so well.”

Epics retold

Iain Burns has sent this, which I pass on for you to investigate further if you are interested:

Can I draw to your members’ attention a book called Tales from Olympus which contains a selection of 9 re-told epic poems in modern idiom. The book contains contextual notes to explain the true origins of the stories and a full glossary of terms. It makes a perfect introduction to the classic tales of Homer, Ovid for readers of all ages – but ideal for school as they are told with tongue in cheek.

The book can be ordered from https://shop.classicalmusichomepage.com/product/show/11564988?tab=Synopsis

Consortium of home-schooling families do well in Latin

Home schooling seems to be big in the USA. My own niece there taught one of her children at home for one year, joining with other families for science and perhaps other subjects. Anyway, this particular group of families has done excellently in Latin

Area Latin students excel at state competitions

Local Latin students who attend the Classical Cottage School brought home over half of the 30 top prizes awarded to students who attended the Virginia Junior Classical League competitions in Richmond Nov. 23-24.

The 12 Classical Cottage students were among 1,150 delegates attending the convention.

Emma Leahy was the top student at the gathering for the fifth consecutive year. A Latin VI student in the 11th grade, she placed first among all students in all three divisions of competition — academics, creative arts, and graphic arts — and was first among all 11th-grade students overall.

She was presented nine Best in Show awards for her representation of Cleopatra in the Couple Costume contest, Latin Dramatic Interpretation, and Charts, and on academic tests of Mythology, Roman Daily Life, Academic Pentathlon, Latin Literature, Roman History, and Ancient Sports.

Emma also placed first in her division for Storytelling, English Oratory, Pottery, Cartoon, Greeting Card, and Art: Pencil. She placed second in T-shirt Design and the Art categories of Ink, Pastel, and Watercolor. Her Jewelry and Textiles entries won third-place ribbons.

Emma’s Advanced Latin Oratory placed fourth and her Modern Myth placed sixth.
Bret Geyer, a senior in Latin Four, won first place and Best in Show with Emma as Marc Antony in Couples Costumes; first in Modern Myth; third in Latin Vocabulary and Ancient Sports; sixth in Latin Grammar and Latin Reading Comprehension; and seventh in 12th-grade achievers.

Ingrid Heidelberger, a sophomore in Latin Six, won first place and Best in Show in Modern Myth, Latin Reading Comprehension, and Latin Grammar; first in Girls’ Advanced Prose Dramatic Interpretation; second in overall 10th-grade achievers; third in the Derivatives test; and fifth in Latin Vocabulary. Ingrid also was elected Virginia JCL secretary for 2008-09.

Carolyn Manion, a sixth-grader in Latin Two, won first place and Best in Show in Mosaics; first in Dramatic Interpretation, Mythology, Roman Daily Life, Ancient Sports, and overall among students through the eighth grade; second in Latin Grammar, Academic Pentathlon, Latin Oratory, Storytelling, and the younger Couples’ Costume Contest; third in Latin Reading Comprehension and Cartoons; and fourth in Illustrated Quotes.

Maeve Juday, a Latin Two student in fifth grade, won first place in Latin Oratory; second in Latin Vocabulary, Sculpture, Jewelry, and younger Couples’ Costume with Carolyn; third in Latin Dramatic Interpretation and among all students in grades five through eight; fourth in Cartoon and Map; fifth in Latin Grammar; and ninth in Mythology.

Kelly Lawyer, a senior in Latin Four who served as the VJCL first vice president for 2007-08, won second in Roman History and Maps; fourth in Pottery; fifth in Pentathlon; and seventh in Latin Reading Comprehension.

Kimberly Lawyer, a sophomore in Latin One, won first place in Latin Dramatic Interpretation; second in Pottery, Textiles, and Latin Oratory; fourth in Dolls; seventh in Latin Derivatives and among all 10th-graders participating; and 10th in Latin Reading Comprehension and Roman History.

Maria Cascio, a freshman in Latin One, won first place in Mosaics and Pottery; second in Latin Dramatic Interpretation; third in Latin Oratory and among all ninth-graders; fourth in Maps; sixth in Jewelry; seventh in Reading Comprehension; eighth in Latin One Omnibus; ninth in Latin Language test; and 10th in Latin Derivatives.

Aubrey Geyer, a freshman in Latin Four, won first in Latin Reading Comprehension and Modern Myth; second in Mythology and Girls’ Costume Contest as Demeter, goddess of agriculture; fourth in Academic Pentathlon and among all ninth-graders; sixth in Derivatives; and seventh in Latin Grammar.

Rachel Bell, an eighth-grader in Latin Two, won first place in the younger Couples’ Costume Contest; second in Textiles and Latin Dramatic Interpretation; and seventh in Mythology.

Camille Leeds, a Latin Two eighth-grader, won first place in Textiles and the younger Couples’ Costume Contest with Rachel; second in the Roman Life test; third in Latin Oratory; and seventh in Reading Comprehension and Roman History.

And Kenton Geyer, a Latin Two sixth-grader, won first place in Boys’ Costume Contest depicting Hades, god of the Underworld.

The Classical Cottage School is a consortium of home-schooling families who meet once a week for classes in Double Tollgate.

For more information on the school, call Cindy Leahy at 540-837-1599.