by Beth Ellison, Teacher

Elmwood’s Classics Conference Team is in its 5th decade of attending the Ontario Student Classics Conference - it is one of the oldest student activities at the school!  When Covid struck in 2020, our team was just 5 meetings away from participating in that year’s Conference, and so this year’s event marked 4 years since our last participation.

Throughout this year, Classics Club students have been meeting on Fridays after school in order to learn new artistic skills - using experimental archaeology to understand ancient cultures through creativity. As the year progressed, the Classics Conference Team, consisting of 11 students, was formed, and began to prepare projects for submission in this year’s events.  

While the conference has been competitive in the past, involving trophies and ribbons, this year, the conference focussed instead on allowing students to experience a wide variety of new events without the pressure of competition. New experiential activities were offered, including things like Vitruvius’ Lego challenge, Roman bread-making, a pottery workshop, archaeological excavation, processing artefacts, and creating artefacts. In addition, we created a gallery of student creative work, and our traditional performance events were offered, including skit (a short play written by students on a mythological theme), fashion show (where students create classical fashion and present it in a unique student-created performance), and live performance (where students present songs, monologues, or scenes from ancient plays.)  

There were also presentations from classics professors from Brock, Wilfred Laurier, University of Ottawa, and McMaster, where students learned about subjects ranging from classical archaeology and the Olympics, to ancient childhood, graffiti, and scientific terminology. In athletics, students participated in Boudica’s Bootcamp (an endurance event combining students from different schools), ultimate frisbee, gladiator training, and, as always, the chariot race!

This year’s Elmwood Team returned to the conference with great enthusiasm and participated in every event possible. Their performances were outstanding, with a graceful and well-presented fashion show, a hilarious skit, and an impressively-moving live performance of two monologues from The Trojan Women.  

We are so proud of this year’s participants, whose enthusiasm and dedication throughout the year led them to shine in all of their activities. Many thanks to Ms. Elgee for coming with us and helping keep everyone organized and looked-after!! Congratulations to this year’s fabulous team:  Stella Fisher, Camilla Thomson, Rena Zhao, Ella Young, Queenie Yau, Hannah, Vermeij, May Wang, Mia Philipson, Madeline Winter,  Sloane Bradley, Lily Sun.