Eleven Archer Latinists attended the California Junior Classical League (CaJCL) Convention at Woodbridge High School in Irvine, California, on March 25 and 26. The convention is an annual event that attracts thousands of students from across California to celebrate Roman and Greek culture.
On the first day of the convention, delegates took tests in categories ranging from calculus to ancient geography. Students also allowed submitted art in categories like sculpture, poetry and maps.
“My favorite activity was walking around and looking at all of the art submissions from the different schools,” Helena Laan ’18 said. “It was really interesting to see the different interpretations of the Roman culture.”
On the second day, there were opportunities to participate in activities such as Rent a Roman, Project Runway Fashion Show and a Roman rap battle. There were also competitions like Latin oratory, chariot racing and dramatic interpretation.
“There’s a Roman jeopardy competition called certamen,” Laan said. “It was really interesting to hear a lot of weird Roman facts you wouldn’t usually know and to see how quickly [the competitors] could answer the questions under pressure.”
The most highly anticipated and most competitive event at the convention is the spirit competition. Watch a video of the girls in action during the spirit competition.
This year Archer took home two first place titles in spirit for both high school and middle school, despite only having 9 upper schoolers and 2 middle schoolers.
“Basically we all just shout for 15 minutes straight. A lot of schools all wear the same t-shirt and have balloons and pom poms,” Zoe Webb-Mack ‘17 said. “[Judges] go around judging who is the most unified and the loudest — who’s the most in it.”
Delegates are not required to take Latin, which allowed more than Archer’s four students enrolled in Latin to attend.
“I would probably recommend [the convention] to anyone even if they don’t take Latin, because you really don’t need to know any to attend,” Anna Brodsky ‘20 said. “I haven’t taken it since 6th grade and I still really enjoyed it.”