Greece for Kids
Athenians thought of themselves as the
shining star of the Greek city-states. They were famed for their
literature, poetry, drama, theatre, schools, buildings, and
Before the Greek
dark ages, Athens was a small village, home to a tribe
of Ionian people. After the Greek dark ages, Athens grew rapidly until
Athens was one of the two most powerful city-states in the ancient
Greek world. (The other was Sparta.)
The Athenian were very different from
the ancient Spartans.
The Greeks believed that each
city-state in ancient Greece had a god
or a goddess in charge of it, their special patron.
For Athens, the patron was Athena,
goddess of wisdom.
Perhaps because Athena was their patron, Athenians put a great
deal of emphasis on education.
Girls learned at home from their
mothers. They learned how to run a home, and how to be good wives
Boys were educated quite
differently. Until age 6 or 7, boys were taught at home by their
mothers. From 7-14, boys attended a day school outside the home.
There, they memorized Homeric poetry and learned to play the lyre.
They learned drama, public speaking, reading, writing, math, and
perhaps even how to play the flute.
After middle school, they went
to a four year high school and learned more about math, science,
and government. At 18, they attended two years of military school.
There was just cause for Athens to be proud of its system of
education for its citizens.
Each city-state chose its own form
of government. Most Greek
city-states were ruled by kings. In Athens,
citizens (the men) met each week to discuss problems. They worked
on solutions. The men of Athens experimented with
government. For about 100 years, Athens was a direct
Poseidon, and Athens (myth)
of Athens for Kids
Court of Athens (Justice System)
Democracy in Athens
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