Studying the Ancient World gives pupils a greater understanding of their own modern world and the influences that have passed through the generations. We seek to enthuse pupils with both the study of language and past civilisations.

Latin is taught to all pupils in the 1st and 2nd Form at King Edward's following the Cambridge Latin Course which encourages a fluent reading of Latin texts. They are also introduced to Roman life in Pompeii, Britain, and Egypt. In the 3rd Form, pupils can opt to continue with Latin.  They learn about the Roman Baths at Aquae Sulis and the Roman army in Britain, while developing their knowledge and understanding of the language. Alternatively, Classical Civilisation is offered to the 3rd form as an option.  It involves the study of the Ancient Minoans, Ancient Greek literature in translation and the history of Ancient Greece, without learning the ancient languages. 

GCSE Latin builds on the 3rd Form Latin course by consolidating knowledge of the language, preparing pupils for translating adapted Latin passages and composing basic Latin sentences.  Pupils are also given the opportunity to study well known Roman authors writing about certain themes.  The current selection is based around Chariot racing and Roman politics. GCSE Classical Civilisation involves studying Myth and Religion in both the Greek and Roman world, as well as Roman City life. Ancient Greek is currently offered as an activity for Third Form pupils and above.

IB pupils study the Latin language through translation of Ovid’s Metamorphoses, as well as Roman prose and verse literature in its original form. They are encouraged to develop an appreciation of the literary merit of the classical texts and an awareness of the issues raised in them. All pupils complete an extended piece of writing on a theme which they have chosen.  This could include classical history, literature, language, religion, mythology, art, archaeology or some other aspect of classical influence on the modern world. The pieces of evidence are linked by the pupil’s commentary on them.

A number of activities are undertaken to support the teaching and learning, including visits to Butser Ancient Farm, Fishbourne Roman Palace, Bignor, the Roman Baths in Bath and the British Museum. The Department has recently visited the theatre to watch plays in translation and lecture series preparing pupils for examinations. The Classics Department has entered pupils for national Latin reading competitions with considerable success and encourages entry to a local certamen activity, which is a stimulating series of classical challenges designed to appeal to the gifted and talented.

The department has undertaken several international trips including Italy, Sicily, and Greece. We are currently planning a trip to either Italy or Greece for 2020.