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St William of York Catholic Primary School

Ancient Athens and Sparta

Ancient Greece was organised into city states, the two we hear most about are Athens and Sparta and life in the city states was very different.  People belonging to each city state saw themselves as being, for example, Spartan or Athenian first as opposed to being Greek.  The city states in this ancient world did not always get along with one another.  The video below explains a little more about how the geographical positioning of Athens and Sparta affected their outlook and relationships with one another.

What is a City-State?

The following video will explain to you what a city state means.

Geography and Early Greece

In which Mr. Corwin describes the Geography of Greece and how it influenced the cultures that lived there. He also discusses the Minoans and Mycenaeans.

I would like you to watch the videos below and decide where you would rather live; explain - in detail - with referent to the information you now have which city state you would rather live in.

Athens and Sparta

In which Mr. Corwin explains the differences between Athens and Sparta to illustrate how cultures in various city states could be quite different.

Life in Athens & Sparta

In this episode, we take a look at the differences between the city-states of Athens and Sparta.

Finally, imagine being a Spartan soldier!  After watching the video below, imagine you are a Spartan soldier, write me a diary entry, in role, about what a typical day would have been like for you.

Remember features of a diary

Past tense.

First person.

Time chronological order.

Chatty tone - informal language.

Writing about events of one day.


When you have finished, draw a picture of a hoplite, can you label all of the armour and weaponry?


This is Sparta: Fierce warriors of the ancient world - Craig Zimmer

Find out how tough it was becoming a great Spartan warrior!

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