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Hear from Ana Henderson

The Loughborough Grammar boys very quickly realise that, despite the technology advancements, in world of thought and big ideas, we have not yet moved far from the grand questions discussed among Greeks and Romans. This allows them to develop a disposition to think critically and deeply about the concepts of democracy, diversity, gender, politics, art, literature, and history, in an ‘educational package’ for the 21st century.  

The Classics Department regularly runs a wide variety of trips, including regular visits to museums and exhibitions, exploring Roman towns in Britain and outings to theatres to see Greek drama being performed. We also run residential trips to Greece, Rome and/or Pompeii and another destination (Sicily, Croatia, Hadrian’s Wall) on an annual basis. We run an outreach trip to Cyprus where boys teach children of British Forces the three classical subjects. The department also organises Linguistics Olympiad, as our students’ ability in languages is emphasised by the focus on sequences, patterns and notion of code breaking. We also organise Classics Lectures every term delivered by world-renown scholars and in-house Junior lectures presented by our own students on the ancient Mediterranean world. 

Classical Civilisation can be picked up by students at any stage without previous knowledge of the ancient cultures, in year 9, at GCSE or at A level. At each stage, boys are studying different topics using primary sources, such as ancient sites and artefacts, and reading original texts in English. No knowledge of the ancient languages is necessary, all the material is in English. 

Students in year 9 can opt to study Classical Civilisation and explore the wider Ancient World. We start by looking at Athens and Rome, firstly focusing on the Greek Gods and their temples and festivals celebrating them, before moving to everyday life in these two cities.  

At GCSE, students follow OCR syllabus and study two topics: War and Warfare, which allows them to engage with the material related to Athens, Rome and Sparta and their martial prowess, and Women in the Ancient World, where they read the stories related to women of myth, like Pandora or Cassandra, women of history, like Cleopatra, and everyday women and compare it to the modern world. At A level, we study three modules, The World of the Hero, where we explore Homer’s Odyssey and Virgil’s Aeneid, and The Invention of the Barbarian and Politics of Roman Republic. 

Graduates of Classics degrees typically go on to careers in Law, Consulting, Marketing and Finance, and enjoy on average a higher starting salary than graduates of degrees in Law, Biology, Architecture and Pharmacy. In recent years, students have gone on to read Classics at Oxford, Cambridge, St Andrews, Durham, Birmingham and Nottingham.