Byline: Boyce McClain, River City News correspondent
So much for Latin being a dead language or ancient Greek and Roman civilization a thing of the past.
They came alive last weekend when Ed White High School hosted the 41st Regional Latin Forum, attended by 700 students from 14 local middle and high schools.
"Latin attendance has stayed consistent over the years," said Linda Gaskin, Ed White's Latin instructor, in charge of this year's event. "Latin helps students with their SAT scores and to qualify for Florida's Bright Future Scholarship program. Most people know that Latin is the basis for Romance languages such as French, Spanish and Italian. Few realize that more than 50 percent of the English language has its roots in Latin."
The opening assembly kicked off the day's events and included the Pledge of Allegiance in Latin.
"People have their reasons for taking Latin," said Ed White junior Kimberly Porath. "One of mine is to raise my SATs."
The testing session included grammar, derivatives, mythology, history and vocabulary, while the Certamen games (a Latin form of Jeopardy) pitted students against each other in a question-and-answer session.
Bill and Sheryl Rogers, whose daughter Anna is a sophomore at Paxon, say Latin helps her get an insight into different cultures and sparks her creativity.
"I like Latin because it will help me in my career. I hope to be a lawyer," said Alex Perrone, a sophomore at Stanton.
In the Media Center, students displayed their artistic creations. Categories included maps, charts, graphics, sculpture, games and mosaics. Each was judged for authenticity, creativity and accuracy.
The costume competition theme was mythological figures. Girls dressed as the goddess Aurora, boys as Bacchus, and couples as Argus and Juno.
"Costumes don't have to be made by hand, but it helps to have the right props," said Tabitha Silba, a junior at Ed White.
The day also included Olympic events. …