CRGS has a flourishing Classics department, which teaches Latin and Greek to GCSE and A-level, as well as Classical Civilisation to A-level. Latin is taught to all boys in Years 7-9 for 1½ hours (3 periods) per week. The course followed is ‘Ecce Romani’ and by the end of Year 9 students will have reached the end of Book 4, covering most of the basic Latin grammar. Around 30-40 students generally opt for Latin GCSE, taking language and literature papers (OCR syllabus). In the Sixth Form around 6-12 students generally take A-level Latin. This involves reading a range of authors as preparation for unseen translation, set books and prose composition (begun from scratch in Year 12).
Classical Greek is offered as an option against German in Year 8. Between and third and half of boys opt for this each year, and a number continue to GCSE and A-level. In Years 8-11 the course followed is ‘Greek to GCSE’ by John Taylor. The A-level course is along the same lines as for Latin.
Classical Civilisation is offered solely at A-level, with no prior knowledge or study of the ancient world being required or assumed. The syllabus followed is AQA, involving the study of 3 topics. These are: The world of the Hero (selected books of the Iliad and Aeneid), 'Imperial Image' (the reign of Augustus), and 'Love and Relationships'.
These courses are taught by five well-qualified Classics specialists. Results are generally excellent, and quite a few students go on to study Classical subjects at a range of universities, including Oxbridge. The department also organises many extra-curricular activities, including study days, museum visits and theatre trips. We also run regular trips to Italy (Rome/Sorrento) and Greece, generally in alternate years.
The curriculum content for each Classical subject is as follows:
Year 7: Ecce Romani, Chapters 1-21 - the present, imperfect and perfect active tenses of verbs and 1st, 2nd & 3rd declension nouns, excluding the dative case.
Year 8: Ecce Romani, Chapters 22-35 - all active and passive tenses of verbs and all cases of all five declensions of nouns.
Year 9: Ecce Romani, Chapters 36-54 – deponent verbs, all tenses of infinitives and participles, as well as revision of nouns and all tenses of verbs.
Year 10: The Millionaire's Dinner Party – more complex syntax, including all the GCSE prescription.
Work will also commence on learning the prescribed GCSE vocabulary and on the GCSE set texts.
Year 11: completion of the GCSE vocabulary learning and of work on the set texts; revision of grammar and syntax, as appropriate; exam practice and preparation.
Year 12: unseen translation, prose composition (English to Latin sentences) and preparation of the AS prose and verse set books.
Year 13: A2 level unseen/comprehension work, prose composition and preparation of the A2 prose and verse set books.
Year 8: Greek to GCSE, Chapters 1-4 – the present, future, imperfect and aorist active tenses of verbs and 1st & 2nd declension nouns.
Year 9: Greek to GCSE, Chapters 5-7 – the present and imperfect passive tenses, 3rd declension nouns, participles and revision of Year 8 work.
Year 10: Greek to GCSE, Chapters 8-11 – all the prescribed GCSE grammar and syntax. Work will also commence on learning the prescribed GCSE vocabulary.
Year 11: preparation of the GCSE set texts; revision of grammar, syntax and vocabulary, as appropriate; exam practice and preparation.
Year 12: unseen translation, prose composition (English to Greek sentences) and preparation of the A-level prose and verse set books.
Year 13: A-level level unseen/comprehension work, prose composition and preparation of the A-level prose and verse set books.
Year 12: The world of the Hero – selected books of the Iliad; Imperial Image – the reign of Augustus in terms of the image he projected; Love and Relationships – Greek and Roman attitudes to sex and marriage.
Year 13: The world of the Hero – selected books of the Aeneid; Imperial Image and Love and Relationships (continued).