Curriculum Laboratory

Teaching Ideas Showcase: Ancient Greece Teaching Kits...Reviews by Grade Six Students

For further assistance in using any of the resources in the Lab, please ask at the Curriculum Lab Information Services Desk

(This handout contains reviews and poster projects from Ms. Cochlan's Grade Six class at Galbraith School, Lethbridge, April 2003.  Thank you to each of them, and Ms. Cochlan, for inviting me into their class, and helping me develop this handout.) 

Imagine You Are A Famous Archeologist. . .


  • Imagine you are a famous archeologist:
  • Imagine that you are the first to discover the ruinsof an ancient Greek home, amazingly preserved after all these years. You dig your way into each room, and carefully start sifting through the materials, finding many household objects.  You carefully piece together the clues like a complex jigsaw puzzle.
  • Imagine that you discover the ruins of a vast museum of ancient Greek tablets, and many artifacts.  You take pictures and make drawings of these primary sources, which hold the clues to how the people in this ancient civilization worked and played.
  • As you work through the materials, you discover more and more about how the ancient Greeks lived, and how much their contributions have added to our way of life.
  • The kits, books, and activities described below can take you back to Ancient Greece in these ways, and encourage you to travel the ancient Greek world . . .  in your imagination!



Objectives of Handout/Workshop


  • Look at the curricular connections in these activities
  • Display the kits, and share the reviews with each other, as if you were selling their contents in an Agora or marketplace, in Ancient Greece
  • Critically review some of the Ancient Greece teaching kits from the Curriculum Laboratory collection
  • Learn some new, interesting facts about Ancient Greece
  • Develop travel posters, to encourage people to visit Ancient Greece(if they could travel back in time!)


Potential Curriculum Connections in This Handout/Workshop


  • Grade 6 Social Studies -- Democracy: Action and Participation, General Outcome 6.2: Historical Models of Democracy (Ancient Athens) (Social Studies Grade 6 Program of Studies). The resources and activities on this web page provide a good introduction to the life of ancient Athens and Greece.
  • The students will locate/organize/Interpret information, using a variety of resources such as books, kits, computer programs, etc.
  • The students will use communication skills to write a summary of the kits, and develop their participation skills by working in small groups.
  • Art, grades 1-6 (Taken from the Elementary Art Program of Studies, p. C1): 
  • REFLECTION--responses to visual forms in nature,designed objects and artworks..  It includes analyzing structures in nature, assessing designed objects, and appreciating art.
  • COMPOSITION--organization of images and their qualities in the creation of unified statements.  In Composition, the image-making skills developed in Depiction are employed to create integrated artworks.
  • EXPRESSION--use of art materials as a vehicle or medium for saying something in a meaningful way.  In Expression, the focus is on purpose, theme and subject matter, as well as on media and techniques. 
  • English Language Arts:  According  to Alberta Education's Program of Studies, "students will listen, speak, read, write, view and represent" to achieve 5 general outcomes:
  • explore thoughts, ideas, feelings and experiences,
  • comprehend and respond personally and critically to oral, print and other media texts,
  • manage ideas and information,
  • enhance the clarity and artistry of communication, and 
  • respect, support and collaborate with others.


List of Materials


Display the Kits, and Share the Reviews With Each Other


The students were arranged in 5 groups, and each group was given an Display Exercise Handout.  The results of their work are posted below.  Click on the thumbnail pictures to see the results of their displays.


Ancient Greece [kit] : Primary Sources 

Call Number of Kit:

938 Nor

Contents of Kit:

1 book, 1 CD-ROM, 8 photographs, 8 photo cards, 1 photograph index; in container

Most Interesting Part of Kit:

The book, and putting the display all together.

Least Interesting Part of Kit:

No real objects to look at, or video clips on CD-ROM

Four New Things We Learned About Ancient Greece:

  •  Ancient Greece had many pieces of art
  • The designs on their coins were interesting
  • When men took part in the Olympics, they wore no clothes!
  • They made lots of statues

Would it be a good kit for classroom teachers to use?  Why or why not?

  • Yes, it would, because it has lots of information and different resources.
  • No, because it was just made up of pictures, and even the CD-ROM had no movies on it.  However, there were handouts for teachers to print out.

Final rating, out of 5 stars:



Greece and Rome [kit] 

Call Number of Kit:

930 Gre

Contents of Kit:

1 teacher's guide, 2 videocassettes (In the shadow of Vesuvius and Caesarea Maritima: Herod's harbor), 1 CD-ROM in case, 2 maps, 40 Ancient Rome transparencies and 1 booklet, 40 Ancient Greece transparencies and 1 booklet ; in container

Most Interesting Part of Kit:

Movie clips

Least Interesting Part of Kit:

Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome transparencies and booklets

Four New Things We Learned About Ancient Greece:

  • Their architecture, especially the columns, were amazing
  • They had a great navy
  • The islands had rocky soil
  • The Romans stole many Greek ideas, including some of the Greek gods

Would it be a good kit for classroom teachers to use?  Why or why not?

It is not good for students to use alone, but maybe teachers could use parts of it.

Final rating, out of 5 stars:



Ancient Greece [kit] 

Call Number of Kit:

Oversize 938 Sti

Contents of Kit:

2 coiled manuals, 1 book with 20 transparencies, 1 Ancient Greece CD-ROM, 1 Exploring History Assessment CD-ROM, 1 map, 1 chart ; in container

Most Interesting Part of Kit:

Video clips, pictures, and music clips

Least Interesting Part of Kit:

All of it was interesting

Four New Things We Learned About Ancient Greece:

  • They had different music (It wasn't rock and roll!)
  • Greece has lots of old buildings
  • They have different languages
  • Greece is made up of many islands

Would it be a good kit for classroom teachers to use?  Why or why not?

Yes, it would because it helps us understand Greek music and culture.  It is a very good resource.

Final rating, out of 5 stars:



A House of Ancient Greece [kit] 

Call Number of Kit:

Oversize 938 Hou

Contents of Kit:

Contains numerous replicas of Greek artifacts so as to recreate life in an ancient Greek household.  1 alpha kit, 1 beta kit, 1 gamme kit, 1 delta kit, 1 epsilon kit, 1 zeta kit, 1 teacher's kit.

Most Interesting Part of Kit:

  • The bones of a lamb's ankles, used for a children's game
  • The statues
  • The Earrings
  • All the replicas of items found it an archeological dig

Least Interesting Part of Kit:

It was all interesting.

Four New Things We Learned About Ancient Greece:

  • We learned that little kids played with statues as toys
  • We learned that everything was really old and also ancient, and very different from our possessions.
  • We learned that some of the coins are very heavy.
  • We learned that some of the things are similar to our modern possessions.

Would it be a good kit for classroom teachers to use?  Why or why not?

Yes, because everyone will learn something, and also it is really fun, as the kit is very "hands-on."

Final rating, out of 5 stars:


Field trip:  Ancient Greece (938 Fie Gr. 6), and
Life in Ancient Greece [picture] (HangUp 938 Lif), and
Ancient Greece [picture]:  Daily Life (Hangup 938 Anc). and
Ancient Greece [picture] : Athens, the World's First Democracy (Oversize 938 Anc)
Introducing Mythology [picture] : 18 Greek and Roman Gods, Goddesses, and Heroes (HangUp 292.21 Ste)

Contents of Kits:

Different types of posters

Most Interesting Part of Kits:

  • The information on war
  • The map of ancient Greece
  • It tells us what the ancient greeks did.

Least Interesting Part of Kits:

  • About how they ran naked in the Olympics!
  • It would have been better if there had been some activities with the kits, not just posters.

Four New Things We Learned About Ancient Greece:

  • Ancient Greece is rocky.
  • I learned about the wars in ancient Greece
  • I learned about their lifestyle.
  • I learned that the Greeks invented algebra.
  • There were many Gods in ancient Greece.

Would these be good posters for classroom teachers to use? Why or why not?

  • Yes, because the poster tells you about Greece, and where the cities were in ancient Greece.
  • No, because there were not activities to do.

Final rating, out of 5 stars:



Create a Travel Poster For Ancient Greece


  • The students were given an Ancient Greece Travel Poster Handout to develop their own posters, to encourage people to visit Ancient Greece (if they could travel back in time!)
  •  The posters answer the question, "If you could travel back in time to Ancient Greece, what accomplishments, sights, and activities would make it an interesting place to visit? 
  • The poster Ancient Greece [picture] : Athens, the World's First Democracy (Oversize 938 Anc) gives some nice hints on what accomplishments, sights, or activities the students might promote in their posters.
  • Click on the thumbprints below, to see their creations:



Researching the  Topic:Greece:  An Ancient Civilization 


These books were used for ideas, when the students made their posters.

Optional Activity:  The students may evaluate any of these titles, based on these criteria:

  • Does the book look interesting and attractive?
  • Does the book have activities for students?  If so, what kind?
  • Does the book have clear access to information, such as a table of contents, an index, a glossary?
  • Are the illustrations clear and attractive?
  • Is the author qualified to talk about the topic?

The LRC Catalogue lists the following resources for this topic:

Parsons, Jim.  Greece:  Discovering the Past -- 938 Par Gr. 6 v. 1
Parsons, Jim.  Greece:  Discovering the Past Teacher's Resource -- 938 Par Gr. 6 v. 2
Many of these resources are also useful for this unit, found under the subject, "Greece History" in the library catalogue:
Burke, M.R. Ancient Civilizations:  The Story of the Stele (Social Studies Through Drama).   938 Bur

Cohen, Daniel.  Ancient Greece.  938 Coh

Crosher, Judith.  The Greeks. 938 Cro

Fagg, Christopher.  Ancient Greece.   938 Fag

Fisher, Leonard. Cyclops.  292.13 Fis

Hutton, Warwick.  Theseus and the Monotaur.  398.21 Hut

Jane, Kevin  Ancient Greece.  938 Jan. Gr. 6

Jones, John Ellis.  Ancient Greece.  938 Jon

Lasker. Joe.  The Great Alexander The Great.  938 Las.

Life In Ancient Greece:  A Social Studies 6 Project.  938 Lif

MacDonald, Fiona.  I Wonder Why Greeks Built Temples And Other Questions About Ancient Greece.  938 Mac

McClintock, Barbara.  Animal Fables From Aesop.  398.2 McC*

Nardo, Don.  Ancient Greece.  938 Nar

Nicholson, Robert.  Ancient Greece.  938 Nic. Gr. 6

Odjik, Pamela.  The Greeks.  938 Odi Gr. 6

Paxton, Tom.  Aesop's Fables.  398.2 Pax*

Paxton, Tom.  Belling the Cat, and Other Aesop's Fables.  398.2 Pax*

Pearson, Anne.  What Do We know About The Greeks?  938 Pea. Gr. 6

Person, Anne.  Ancient Greece.  938 Pea. Gr. 6

Purdy, Susan.  Ancient Greece.  938 Pur

Steel, Barry.  Greek Cities.  938 Ste

*Aesop's fables are traditionally attributed to Aesop, a Greek slave who lived in about 550 B.C..  In many cases, he may have simply retold older stories, and made them more popular.  They were first published in print format in about 300 B.C..



Search For Ancient Greece Sites on the Web


Prepared by Bill Glaister, Curriculum Lab Coordinator; and  Ms. Penny Cochlan and her Grade 6 class at Galbraith School in Lethbridge, Alberta.  Thank you again for inviting me as your classroom guest!

Prepared April 2003, updated January 2010.