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It’s A Matter of State [Latin Forum]

Latin Students Prepare for State Forum

Satellite+students+play+certamen%2C+a+Latin-based+Jeopardy-like+game.+Photo+by+Taylor+Rohleen
Satellite students play certamen, a Latin-based Jeopardy-like game. Photo by Taylor Rohleen

Satellite students play certamen, a Latin-based Jeopardy-like game. Photo by Taylor Rohleen

Satellite students play certamen, a Latin-based Jeopardy-like game. Photo by Taylor Rohleen

Trenton Blanchard

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Satellite’s most elite Latin students have begun preparing for this year’s State Forum in Orlando starting on April 6th.

After a good showing at the District Forum in February, Mr. Granholm, the head of Satellite’s Latin program, has narrowed down the list to his top 25 students, ranging from first time freshman to year 4 Latin seniors. At State Forum, Satellite’s Latin students will compete against students from across the state in various creative and academic competitions. The academic competitions test students’ knowledge on everything from the linguistic idiosyncrasies of the Latin language (aka grammar) to the most minor detail of the history of Ancient Greece (Hellenic History). Meanwhile, creative competitions can be anything from speeches in Latin to a working model of an ancient flamethrower, which John Golden, 11, made.

Competition at State Forum is tight, with many students from private schools, such as Oak Hall and Escambia, dedicating their entire schedule to studying for their competition. Historically, though, Satellite has always held its own even against these prestigious private institutions, taking home 2nd place finishes at both the 2014 and 2015 Forums in overall sweepstakes, and a 1st place finish in creatives in 2015. Last year, with a new teacher taking the helm of the Satellite Latin program, Satellite finished 6th in overall sweepstakes but defended its title as the best school in creative categories. In his second year as head of the program, Mr. Granholm hopes to improve on that 6th place finish while retaining the creative crown. “We want to try to be the best public school in the state,” Granholm wishes of this year’s competition. This lofty goal can only be achieved through hard work in the classroom.

In preparation, competitors are required to attend at least two one hour long study sessions a week before or after school. At these sessions, students can study for their respective tests by reading from Mr. Granholm’s ever growing library on the classics, or by taking any of the previous state tests dating back to the 1970s. While not attending these sessions won’t bring any draconic punishments, it is hoped that the pressure to do well not just as individuals but as a school will bring out the best in every competing student.

After several studious weeks, Satellite will be ready come April 6th for another excellent showing at State Forum.

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It’s A Matter of State [Latin Forum]