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Learning objectives

6-1 | 6-2
7-1 | 7-2
8-1 | 8-2

Learning objective 6-1

Students will gain knowledge, skills, and experience to:

  • understand how social, political, artistic, and technological aspects of the classical world influenced the lives of Greeks and Romans living in those times.


  • Gathers and uses evidence to describe a social, political, artistic, and/or technological aspect of the classical world.
  • Responds to primary and secondary sources about social, political, artistic, and/or technological aspect of the classical world.
  • Explores different perspectives on the social, political, artistic, and/or technological aspects of the lives of the ancient Greeks and Romans.

Concepts addressed in this learning objective

  • Citizenship and society
  • Culture and identity
  • Empire and power
  • Conflict
  • Art and aesthetics

Key concepts in classical studies

Possible context elaborations

  • The role of leaders, such as Perikles, Julius Caesar, Nero, and Cleopatra: how important is leadership in the battle for empire and power?
  • Heroism, as defined by the actions of Odysseus, Herakles, Perseus, Theseus, and Achilles: how is heroism important to culture and identity?
  • Justice, as conveyed through literary texts such as Sophocles’ Antigone, Homer’s Odyssey – Odysseus’s return to Ithaca, Virgil’s Aeneid II, Ovid’s Metamorphoses – the death of Niobe’s children: to what extent is there justice in suffering?
  • Literary conventions such as the use of language and imagery, for example, Homeric similes: what makes a good story?
  • Traditional religious beliefs, creation and foundation myths, legends and their resulting religious practices of prayer, sacrifice, and divination, for example, Gaia and Ouranus, Olympians, or Romulus and Remus: how do these beliefs establish cultural identity?
  • The reorganisation of the military under Julius Caesar and the development of siege warfare: why was the Roman army the strongest in the classical world?
  • Art and architecture: the purpose and process of creation of temples and public buildings, entertainment venues, houses, mosaics, and frescos: how does form relate to function?
  • The rights, roles, and responsibilities of individuals and groups: the role of the paterfamilias/kyrios and his relationship with others, the relationship between a military commander and his soldiers, the rights of slaves and masters: how were people’s lives predetermined by gender and class?
  • Change in Greek power due to the battle of Marathon: what creates national identity?
  • The impact of the plague during the Peloponnesian War, the Great Fire of Rome, the eruption of Mount Vesuvius: how do people respond to natural disasters?
  • Slavery and the revolt of Spartacus: what makes a freedom fighter?

Possible achievement standards

At the time of publication, achievement standards were in development to align them with The New Zealand Curriculum. Please ensure that you are using the correct version of the standards by going to the NZQA website.

The NZQA subject-specific resources pages are very helpful. From there, you can find all the achievement standards and links to assessment resources, both internal and external.

Learn more:

Classical studies and external qualifications

Level 1 classical studies – NCEA standards

Last updated July 16, 2015