Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Conventiculum Dickinsoniense, Summer 2014, First Post (English)

Dickinson Blog, Summer of 2014

Today is Monday, July 7, 2014. I am attending my third "Conventiculum Dickinsoniense" in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. It is a weeklong Latin language immersion workshop run by Terence Tunberg and Milena Minkova of the University of Kentucky in Lexington. I have already written about my experiences at last year's Conventiculum.

This year I traveled up to Conventiculum with a new friend, Mary Anna White, who at the Conventiculum will later call herself "Tullia." Mary Anna teaches Latin at Granby High School in Norfolk, Virginia. She was kind enough to drive up to Pennsylvania and was a terrific travel companion. We talked in English on a variety of topics, from our schools, to politics, to teaching strategies and projects, religion, school systems, you name it. She is married to a Latin teacher, so I got to hear a little bit about what that is like.

Mary Anna seemed to like traveling with someone who had a good GPS with a via point that got us around the worst of the Washington, DC, traffic. She also liked the fact that I had been to Conventiculum before and knew where and how to check in on campus, where to park behind our dormitory, etc. We are staying in a dormitory called Goodyear, which is interesting and artsy but not very healthful. It has air quality issues, and I can already feel my sinuses reacting to something in the building. But I am determined not to let this get me down.

Tonight we have our initial reception at the Rector Science Center Atrium on the beautiful Dickinson College campus. We will get to know the fellow participants and the professors a little bit in English, Latin, or whatever languages we choose. Tomorrow morning, after some initial announcements, we will subscribe to a solemn oath only to use Latin with our fellow participants for the rest of the week, which means until noon on Sunday.

I think that this year I will do something different and write about my experiences at Conventiculum to the best of my abilities in Latin. That will be better practice for me. Hopefully, I will produce writing that will be of interest and benefit to Latin-language readers and speakers around the globe.

I also want to try to get a decent video clip of each of the professors speaking Latin this year, something short but good that I can post so that Latinists who have never participated in Conventiculum can get a little taste of the high quality of these professors, and of what Conventiculum is like.

Update: I got some video clips, but, unfortunately, I can't seem to find a way to get them from my Amazon Kindle to this blog! How frustrating! Here is a clip from Amazon Cloud Drive, but it's not the best video clip I took. I'm not sure of the quality of the actual video, either. Terence is getting ready for talking about Greek mythology based on some pictures he's distributing.

Right now I am still trying to decide whether I will put myself in the Tirones, or Freshmen, group. or in the Peritiores, or more skilled Latin speakers' group. There are advantages and disadvantages to each. The Peritiores read and discuss a broader range of literature from a variety of time periods, right up to the modern era. The Tirones work more on vocabulary development and oral expression and participate in a wider variety of games and exercises, which honestly might be more practical to adapt for the introductory Latin courses that I mostly teach. I may ask the professors at the reception tonight what they think.

I also plan to attend the Conventiculum Lexintoniense at the University of Kentucky later this summer. I plan to write up those experiences Latine, too.

Update on 8/8/14: I met my goals this summer, except I never really got decent video of Milena and Terence because my Kindle was uncooperative about posting them online. I got side-tracked and never posted about Kentucky, either, which was very similar in format to the Carlisle program. But either way I scooped The Washington Post on summer Latin Camp. What fun!

Update on 8/13/14: This fun blog post follows up on the article and quotes U.S. presidents translated into Latin.  

No comments:

Post a Comment