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Classics

Overview

We are proud to be one of the few state schools in the country to offer both Latin and Classical Civilisation throughout the curriculum. We believe that the study of the ancient past still has an important pedagogical function to play in the modern world and we give all students the opportunity to study this rich and rewarding subject.

KS3 (Years 7-9)

In Year 7 all students are introduced to the wonders of the Greco –Roman world during fortnightly lessons. The course includes an introduction to the Latin language and a review of elements of Greek culture and Roman daily life that still resonate with us today.

Students in Years 8 and 9 can opt to continue studying Latin. The Cambridge Latin Course is used, which encompasses a multi- modal approach to language learning. The course is designed to promote engagement and accessibility in the subject, whilst ensuring that it also remains challenging and intellectually satisfying. 

KS4 (Years 10-11)

For GCSE we offer two Classical subjects:

  • Latin – students continue to build upon the linguistic skills developed at KS3 and have the opportunity to appreciate extracts of ancient Roman literature in the original language. 

  • Classical Civilisation – students enjoy the chance to delve deeper into the ancient world through the study of cultural and literary topics.

KS5 (Years 12 and 13)

We also offer these two Classical subjects at Advanced Level:

  • Latin – By now pupils have the linguistic ability to fully engage with the writings of Roman authors such as Cicero, Virgil, Caesar and Ovid. Students cultivate their understanding and appreciation of these enduring texts whilst continuing to develop skills in translation.    
  • Classical Civilisation – Students undertake a multi-faceted analysis of different aspects of the ancient world which will include the study of society, values, history, politics, religion, philosophy and archaeology.

Extended Curricular Opportunities

Ancient Greek –Students from Year 10 onwards will have the opportunity to begin learning Ancient Greek during lunch time. Those who are particularly committed can pursue the subject to GCSE level.

Classical Trips – Trips to sites of interest in Greece or Rome are arranged annually.  Smaller excursions to local places of interest, museums and theatre trips are also employed where possible to extend student’s learning beyond the classroom.

KS3 (Years 7 – 9) – Classics and Latin

Year 7 Classics

What is the meaning of life?

Our year 7 Classics course may not provide the answer, but it will enable the students to see the ancient world as a lens through which we can learn about the core elements of the human condition, which are not bound by space or time.

Through study of topics such as vases and material culture, religion and mythology and food and fashion, students are encouraged to reflect on both the curious differences and profound similarities between people now, ad people then. Lessons on the Latin language demonstrate the many links between Latin and English and give students an authentic view of what studying Latin would be like in Year 8 and 9. 

Year 8 and 9 Latin

 

Latin is a popular option for Years 8-9Those who choose the subject at this juncture embark on a two year course with a twofold aim:

1) To develop comprehension of the Latin language.

2) To increase understanding concerning the customs and values of Roman civilisation. 

 

The subject is taught using the Cambridge Latin Course.

 

In Year 8 students study the Cambridge Latin Course Book I, in which they follow the story of the Roman banker Caecilius and his family, as they live their lives in Pompeii during the first century AD against the backdrop of the supposedly dormant Mt. Vesuvius. 

In Year 9 students study the Cambridge Latin Course Book II, honing their linguistic ability as they read about Caecilius’ son Quintus, whose adventures take him to the most remote and exotic corners of the Roman Empire, including Egypt and Britain.

A range of teaching and learning methods are used throughout the course.  A healthy amount of rigorous translation work and vocabulary learning is supplemented with computer based activities, video clips, model making and drama activities in order to make the supposedly dead language come to life.

Students are encouraged to use the Cambridge Latin Course website in order to extend their learning beyond the classroom (http://www.cambridgescp.com/Upage.php?p=clc^top^home)   Language tests (vocabulary and grammar) develop linguistic skills and give the opportunity for self- assessment, while links to civilisation topics provide additional material for students who wish to pursue their interest in a particular area.

 

KS4 (Years 10 – 11): GCSE Latin

GCSE Latin has truly been an enlightening experience. The complexity of Latin grammar not only provides a challenge for me, it also gives me great satisfaction when I am able to apply my knowledge correctly. I am glad to have chosen Latin as a GCSE subject and I definitely recommend it to all.

Karina Gurang, 10A

 

During this two year course students will be introduced to the nuances and complexities of the Latin language and develop their ability to translate with sophistication and fluency. In addition, they will study some of the truly great works of Roman literature in the original language; a unique opportunity that should both intellectually empower and delight them. The qualification sharpens lateral thinking and hones analytical ability, making it highly valuable and beneficial for all manner of further academic studies. 

We will study the OCR syllabus. The assessment consists of three written examinations, taken at the end of Year 11:

  1. Latin Language: You will be required to answer comprehension questions and translate an unseen passage of Latin. This exam is worth 50% of the qualification.

     

  2. Latin Prose Literature: You will be required to answer questions focusing on literary style and characterisation in our prose set text. This unit is worth 25%.

     

  3. Latin Verse Literature: You will be required to answer questions focusing on literary style and characterisation in our verse set text. This unit is worth 25%.

 

Further information can be found in the Year 9 Options booklet and specification details can be found by following the link: http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/gcse-latin-j282-from-2016/

 

KS4 (Years 10 – 11): GCSE Classical Civilisation

 

An interesting and accessible course perfect for students who wish to increase their knowledge of Greek and Roman society and literature through translated texts.  We will study the OCR syllabus. Students will study the following four units:

City Life in the Classical World: This unit focuses on the everyday life of citizens in ancient Athens, one of the most flourishing and progressive city states in history. Pupils will develop an understanding of the concept of democracy as practised by the Athenians and learn about the role of religion, entertainment and the family in Athenian society.

Epic and Myth: Pupils will read and study set books from Homer’s seminal and immortal epic The Odyssey.  Pupils will learn about the wanderings of Odysseus and reflect upon intriguing issues such as what it means to be a hero and what makes a society civilised.

Community Life in the Classical World: Pupils study the ancient town of Pompeii; a unique source for our understanding of everyday life in a prosperous town at the height of the Roman Empire.  They will learn about all aspects of life in the town as well as the destruction caused by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD.

Culture and Society in the Classical World: This is a Controlled Assessment unit for which pupils are required to produce a 2000 word essay on a question relating to the topic.  Pupils will be taught an understanding of the subject matter and basic research skills and will then complete their essay in class under exam conditions.  Since its introduction this unit has proved popular with pupils and has produced some truly fascinating independent work.

Further information can be found in the Year 9 Options booklet and specification details can be found by following the link: http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/gcse-classical-civilisation-j280-j080-from-2012/

 

KS5 (Years 12 and 13): LATIN

“I greatly enjoy studying Latin at A-level. It has given me the opportunity to hone my linguistic skills to the point where I can confidently analyse and appreciate Latin texts, which are often surprisingly relevant to our world today.”

Anisha Jagdev- Harris (Year 12)

 

Latin is the ultimate foundation of academic endeavour and will equip you with a broad range of valuable skills which are transferable into absolutely any academic field. The A Level course will complete your instruction in the language and entitle you to affirm that you ‘know’ Latin. In addition, you will study some of the greatest texts of western literature in their original form; a unique opportunity that will both intellectually empower and delight you.

 

Topics in the Lower Sixth

1) Latin Language: You will deepen your understanding of the linguistic constructions covered at GCSE and broaden your knowledge to cover every remaining aspect of Latin grammar.

2)  Latin Prose and Verse Literature: You will develop the skills of literary analysis that you learned at GCSE by exploring slightly longer passages of authentic Latin.

 

Topics in the Upper Sixth

1)  Latin Language: you will continue to develop your linguistic skills by tackling unseen translations of authentic Latin literature. The examination will require you to complete both an unseen verse and prose translation and to answer some comprehension questions about an extract of Latin.

2) Latin Verse Literature: You will read further extracts of the verse author that you studied in Lower Sixth, thereby building up a fuller picture of the narrative and historical context of the work.

3)  Latin Prose Literature: As with the verse paper, you will complete a more in depth study of the author you read in Lower Sixth.

 

This is a linear A Level course, following the OCR syllabus. Assessment takes the form of four examinations that cover all material taught in the two year course. The two Latin language components are worth 50%, while Verse and Prose Literature are worth 25% respectively.

 

Further information can be found in the Sixth Form prospectus and specification details can be found by following the link: http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/as-a-level-gce-latin-h043-h443-from-2016/

 

 

KS5 (Years 12 and 13): CLASSICAL CIVILISATION

This is a multi-faceted and inter-disciplinary subject that provides an ancient perspective on cultural customs and societal constructs which still have great bearing on our own lives today.

Topics at AS Level

1)  Homer’s Odyssey and Society:  We learn about one man’s epic quest to get back home and reflect upon how his story shaped the value systems and thought processes of society. We explore the timeless concepts of justice, fate and the role of the gods against a backdrop of magical realism.

2)  Greek Tragedy in its Context: We learn about the origins of theatre and study four plays of the three great tragedians: Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. We examine the often shocking tales that these plays contain and try to reconcile them with our wider understanding of the world.

 

Topics at A2 Level

1)  Comic Drama in the Ancient World: We focus on the work of the playwrights Aristophanes and Plautus. We examine the origins of comedy and through reading four plays we garner an appreciation for comedy’s longstanding function of inviting people both to laugh at and question the values of their society.

2)  Virgil and the World of the Hero: We conduct a close analysis of Virgil’s Aeneid, the definitive epic of Roman literature and compare it to its older Greek counterpart, Homer’s Iliad. A host of wide ranging issues are discussed, including history, politics, philosophy and religion.

This is a non-linear course, following the OCR syllabus. The AS units examined at the end of Lower Sixth will constitute 50% of the final A Level grade. Each unit will be examined in similar terms. You will complete commentary questions, which assess your understanding of a specific extract and essay questions, which require you to write about overarching themes contained within the texts we have studied.

Further information can be found in the Sixth Form prospectus and specification details can be found by following the link: http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/as-a-level-gce-classics-classical-civilisation-h041-h441/