The reformed Classical Civilisation specification draws on a wide range of primary sources, both literary and visual.
The OCR exam board tried, as much as possible, to select objects, which can be visited by pupils to enhance their understanding. Some of these are in the British Museum and on September 29th we ventured out to explore a number of these, which are central to the new GCSE and A Level.
We took a bit of time to reflect on the architecture of the British Museum and what it tells us about the impact of the Greeks and Romans on western civilization. We proceeded to the outstanding Parthenon sculptures, looking at how 5th century BC Athenians depicted the birth of Athena and their annual procession to honour and bring gifts to their patron goddess. We also examined how the Ancient Greeks portrayed their gods and heroes, like Theseus, in vase painting and what, according to these images, Athenian theatre performances might have looked like.
Pupils, who study Latin or Classical Civilisation, or expressed a particular interest in the museum, participated. Some of the more experienced gave brief presentations on artefacts previously studied. After examining the prescribed sources, we all enjoyed some free time to wander around the collections and have lunch.
– Dr Diura Stobart, Teacher in Charge of Classical Civilisation