Students in Judy Hunt’s advanced Latin class at New Haven High School have their reasons for learning a “dead” language: higher test scores, a stronger grasp of English and better preparation for college science and medicine courses.
There’s also the toga parties and pig sacrifices.
Today, Hunt will stage a “pig sacrifice” when she cuts into a cake that has the image of a pig on the frosting. The ceremony is part of an ancient Roman celebration, Saturnalia, named for the god Saturn. To thank him for a good harvest, Hunt said the Romans had a pig sacrifice.
“Sometimes you need to do weird things to get their interest to create learning,” said Hunt, who has taught Latin at New Haven for six years.