A day in ancient Greece
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A day in ancient Greece

Greek vase

If you're a teacher, parent, or day camp counselor thinking of spending a week or so on the Greeks, here's some ideas other people have found useful:

Clothes: For boys, an extra-large white T-shirt with a belt will look fine. It should reach his knees. Bare feet or sandals are good, and a cloak can be any largish piece of solid-color cloth - it should also reach his knees, and can be knotted on the shoulder or pinned with a brooch.

For girls, a long white nightgown is a good place to start. It should reach her ankles. Then on top of that, take a white or solid-colored sheet. Hold it up against her so the long sides are parallel to the ground. Fold it over so that the dress reaches from her neck to the ground, with the fold on the side away from her body. Now fold the sheet in half, with the girl in the middle, so she has half of the sheet behind her and half in front of her, and it goes under her left arm. Pull up on the front and back over each shoulder, and pin the cloth over her shoulders. Now the dress is done except it is open all down the right side. Add a sash to hold the right side closed. Girls also wear bare feet or sandals and have cloaks like the boys, only sometimes the girls wear their cloaks over their heads or even their faces, like veils. More on Greek clothes

Food: Pita-bread pizzas with olive oil, feta cheese, mushrooms and/or onions (no tomatoes!), or artichokes are appropriate; so is lentil soup, or barley soup. You could have a green salad with it, with lettuce, spinach, onions, and cucumbers, and oil and vinegar dressing; for dessert honey on bread, or yogurt with honey and walnuts, or baklava.

More on Greek food

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Music: Pipes and stringed instruments and drums are all okay. A recorder, a small harp, and a tom-tom drum would be good. We don't really know what Greek music sounded like, so you can play whatever you like.

More on Greek music

Activities:

* Olympic games
* Play reading
* Vase-painting

Bibliography and further reading ideas for Ancient Greek projects, check out these books:

Hands-On Ancient People, Volume 2 : Art Activities about Minoans, Mycenaeans, Trojans, Ancient Greeks, Etruscans, and Romans (2004) For kids ages 9-12.

Ancient Greece!: 40 Hands-On Activities to Experience This Wondrous Age (Kaleidoscope Kids), by Avery Hart, Paul Mantell, and Michael P. Kline (1999). Gives ideas to get kids thinking, rather than step-by-step instructions.

More about Ancient Greece
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Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
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