Students Take National Latin Exam

Victoria Melkonyan, Features Editor

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On Tuesday March 12 during first period in the cafeteria, many Mt. Greylock Latin students took the National Latin Exam. The exam, which is sponsored by the American Classical League and the National Junior Classical League, is “predicated on providing every Latin student the opportunity to experience a sense of personal accomplishment and success in his study of the Latin language and culture… on the National Latin Exam, [a student is] not competing with his fellow student on a comparative basis, but is evaluated solely on his own performance on the exam. The basic purposes of the NLE are to promote the study of Latin and to encourage the individual student,” according to the exam’s website

All middle school Latin students had to take the exam, but it was optional for high schoolers (though many took it). Students took virtually every level of the exam, from Introduction to Latin to higher Latin classes such as Latin V and VI. The exam itself was a 40 minute test with 40 questions on Latin grammar, reading comprehension, and Roman culture. If students do well, they have the opportunity to earn medals or certificates given out at the Mt. Greylock awards ceremony later in the year – in addition, students who do especially well can apply for up to thousands of dollars in scholarships.

Senior and Mt. Greylock JCL president Katrina Hotaling spoke of her experience taking the National Latin Exam for several years: “I’ve taken the National Latin Exam for seven years now, and it’s always been really exciting for me. As someone who loves Latin and the classics maybe a little too much, the National Latin Exam gives me a unique way to… See what I’ve learned and what I still would like to learn. Plus, it forces me to review my Latin grammar, which is always a good thing!” Sophomore Oscar Low said “It was a great opportunity to gather together with all of the Latin disciples, regardless of grade, and learn beforehand about Ancient history, geography, mythology, and language. In our Latin III class, everyone in our class was assigned a topic on which we all gave presentations to prepare for the exam. Ms. Siegel prepared us well in this way.” It seems like Mt. Greylock will be taking and appreciating the National Latin Exam for many years to come.