Hill’s Certamen team is a group of seventh and eighth graders who meet weekly to expand their knowledge of Latin and practice answering Jeopardy-style questions. They review topics in Latin grammar, Roman history, culture, and mythology. Then, about once a month, the team travels to different schools across Virginia and Maryland to compete. In each round of a competition, three teams face off to answer twenty questions. The players must answer quickly and correctly – the first person to give the correct response to a question earns their team points and the opportunity to answer a bonus question. After several rounds, the points for all competing teams are tallied and winners for each level of play are announced.
Hill’s teams have consistently placed in the top half to the top third of the field at their level, even though many of the teams they compete against practice more often and attend high school. This year, we competed at the Kick-off Certamen at St. Stephens & St. Agnes School, the Classical Cottage Certamen at Powhatan School (where our level IA team placed 3rd), the Riverbend Certamen (where our level IA team placed 3rd), and the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology Certamen. The enthusiasm of our team members, particularly of a few very committed eighth graders, has made practice and competitions this year a great experience. The eighth grade team finished the year by participating in the Virginia State Finals Certamen in April.