As part of our foci question ‘Who were the ancient Greeks’, Class 5 children have been investigating how people lived during that period. A key area of foci was to compare life in the two main city states; Athens and Sparta. Using non-fiction books and other information sources, children researched many areas of life such as; slavery, education, democracy, leisure interest and the role of men and women.
Using this information children made arguments for and against living in Athens and Sparta. After choosing which city state they would like to live in, they held a lively and fiercely fought debate!
Led by the leaders of both cities—children shared their opinions about the government of their city state. Many strong arguments, both for and against, were discussed. For example; the use of people as slaves, the rights of females to be treated equally (go to school and vote), the rights of children to not be trained to fight as soldiers, as well as democracy versus dictatorship.
After much discussion, some children were so influenced and persuaded by the issues discussed, that they defected to the opposite city state!