Latin students go to Italy over spring break


Photo provided by Courtney Herring

Latin students together in Vatican City.

Over spring break, Latin students had the chance to partake in the bi-annual trip to Italy, where students all over LISD came together to travel to Italy and use their knowledge of Latin to gain further insight into different cultures and ways of life.

“Travel to foreign countries is always beneficial, especially [for] young people, to broaden one’s exposure to different cultures,” Latin teacher Courtney Herring said. “They learn to appreciate the differences and similarities between people living in different places and get a chance to try new things. This trip provided an opportunity for them to see and use what they have been studying in class. They can’t use their Latin in the way that modern language students can by communicating with native speakers. By visiting Pompeii, Rome, and the archaeological museum in Naples, they were able to personally experience all the things they have read about and translated.”

The group travelled all across Italy, including Venice, Florence, Assisi, Lucca, Sorrento, Pompeii, Naples and Rome and was able to see many famous historical artifacts, such as the Sistine Chapel and the Colosseum. For junior Kyra Shank, Rome and Pompeii were the highlights of the trip.

“I think the coolest thing was being able to see the Vatican,” Shank said. “We were able to walk around in places that were way, way old. We were able to get the authentic Italian experience. In Lucca, we met this old painter and I bought a little painting from him. He told me they were painted by his brother who is a famous artist. It was really cool because he taught us some Italian.”

Through this trip, Latin students were exposed to things they have learned about in class and to others who shared the same interests and passions.

“We had kids from all of the high schools in LISD, so I got to meet some people from Marcus, Flower Mound and the Colony,” Shank said. “I was able to meet a lot of different people and I was able get to know the people from Hebron [a lot better].”

Travelling to Italy also exposed students to a completely different lifestyle, leading them to compare and observe the differences in culture and way of living.

“People walk everywhere in Italy,” Herring said. “Most of my students who went had learned a little basic Italian in preparation for the trip, but being immersed in a foreign language gave them such an appreciation for what immigrants and [English as a Second Language] students experience on a regular basis. They also gained a great appreciation for certain ‘American’ things they used to take for granted, such as free water with meals, ice, air conditioning/heating on demand, etc.”

Overall, the trip to Italy gave students an in-person, authentic learning experience where they were able to apply what they learned during class to the trip and be exposed to a completely different lifestyle.

“Latin students always see connections to their learning in English language/literature and history class,” Herring said. “But to actually see where the Romans lived their daily lives is an experience not many Latin students get to have.”