Greece and Persia (unit 3)

By , March 8, 2013 3:25 pm

Welcome to Greece and Persia.

  • the HTCs that we will emphasize in this unit are cause and consequence, historical perspectives and primary evidence.


Fri. Oct. 12: Introduction to Greece

Balancing our present views of democracy with Athenian views of democracy

Minds On: what criteria can we use/build to determine what is or is not democratic? This will be a crucial exercise as we move through the unit and explore democracy. We’ll have to keep historical perspective, presentism and ethics in mind.


Interesting articles to read, if you wish (I got some of my criteria for democracy from these articles):

Macleans article by David Moscrop: “Canada is a great democracy. But you need to understand it.” April 16, 2017.

The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Index of Democracy by Laza Kekic. 2007.

Intro_Greece_Mar_2018  (PPT)

Annotation Activity: using the materials provided (PPT, worksheet below), please identify similarities and differences between us and ancient Greeks. Annotate sheets with comments on how they are like us and different from us.



HW:  Use pages 109 to 113 in the textbook to answer how each of the following could have contributed to ending the dark ages (time when society did not flourish):

  • Alphabet (through trade with the Phoenicians)
  • Olympics
  • Homer’s works (The Iliad, The Odyssey)
  • Colonies


Mon. Oct. 15: Was Athenian government democratic?

Athenian_Democracy_Mar_2018 (1) (PPT)

Athenian democracy ranking activity: CHW3M Democracy: rank the top 7 contributions to democracy. Make sure you can justify your choices. If you need more information, see the textbook chapter on Greece and the PPT above.

HTC journal: Choose one (not your #1) of your top 7 and explain how it contributed to democracy in Athens. Be sure to explain thoroughly. That means: (we did a little peer assessment for learning out of 6)

  • be direct in answering the question; get to the point, don’t assume the reader knows anything
  • use causal language (underlying, triggered, indirectly, directly, paved the way for, resulted in, etc.)
  • use your prior knowledge (show what you know what about Athenian democracy)


HW:  Take brief notes on Persian Wars, pages 119-123,  emphasizing cause-consequence relationships under these headings:

  • Ionian revolt
  • battle of Marathon
  • Athens builds ships
  • Thermopylae
  • Salamis and Plataea


Tues. Oct. 16 and Wed. Oct. 17: Greek Women


HTC = primary evidence, historical perspectives

Fill in Greece column on Comparison of Women in Three Civs chart using pages 152-153 in the textbook. Briefly.

Greek Women primary source evidence exercise (see PPT below). For each object on the PPT below, identify what the women are doing, how they are dressed, where they are. Make inferences using red light (for guessing), yellow light (for possibility) and green light (for certainty).

Greek_Women_2018 (PPT)

We noted that both primary and secondary evidence can be biased.

Ms. G read the Aristotle PSD aloud (in handout package) and students annotated it. We focused on the contrast between women’s responsibilities and men’s power/control.


HW: if not done in class – fill in Greece on Comparison of Women in Three Civs chart using pages 152-153.


In-class assignment: CHW3M_Rubric_Greek_Women_Reflection

Task: To what extent did Aristotle’s interpretation of Greek women’s lives agree with and/or contradict the interpretation of their lives as seen in the vases/objects?

  • Answer in your HTC Journal by hand. Page limit of 3 pages, double-spaced.
  • Start by asking 3 or more questions about the vases/objects, the document and the relationship between them. Show curiosity! They should not be yes/no questions. They should show deep thinking and curiosity.
  • For the agree/disagree part:
    • Use precise examples from the PSD and the objects to support your conclusions: minimum of 2 from each (two vases, two quotes).
      • use actual quotes from the document and then explain what you think he meant by them
      • when making interpretations about the vases, describe the vase and what you see shown on it
  • Hints on making interpretations (inferences).
    • Make sure they are actual inferences, not summaries or paraphrases of what he wrote.
    • Tell the reader what you think Aristotle really meant!
      • I think he meant that…
      • He valued…
      • He believed…
      • He seemed to feel that…
      • He seemed to think that…

Choose your degree of certainty carefully. Think about all you have learned about how to use an appropriate tone of probability. Red yellow green


Thurs. Oct. 18 and Fri. Oct. 19Athens-Sparta Debate 


  1. Read “Pericles’ Funeral Oration” PSD in handout package.
  1. Read the introductory blurb to see how the situation might have affected the speech. (I.e., it matters who the speech was given to and in the middle of which war vs. someone important).
  1. Highlight or underline words that show Pericles’ biases (preconceived opinions) on government, leisure time, culture and art, and role of women:
    1. favourable – things he likes and boasts about – Athens
    2. against – things he’s critical of (read between the lines – of Sparta)
  1. Read “Athens” worksheets in your handout package and answer questions 1a,b,c, 2a,b,d, 3a, b, 4a, 5a in your notes.
  2. Read “Sparta” worksheets in your handout package and answer questions 1,2a,b, 3a,b, 4a,b,c, 5 in your notes.
  3. Take notes on Sparta from textbook, 117-119.

HW: finish all of this for tomorrow – you’ll need it to enter class for the debate.


Athens-Sparta Debate. In-role: defend which state had the better way of life and how that made their city-state flourish. That means you need to think from the perspective of Athenians and Spartans. It’s an in-role debate.

Identify values of each city-state:

(courtesy of Nebyou – these are from last year)


Friday HW: 

1. Take notes on philosophy, sophists, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle  from 145-147.



Mon. Oct. 22 and Tues. Oct. 23: Persia – how was it ruled??


Minds On: “The Persians” (handout) shows how the Persian Empire was quite different from what the Greeks thought of it. Why are we stopping to study Persia in a unit on Greece?

  1. Remember the Persian Wars?
  2. Persia was the largest empire at the time.
  3. The Greeks were biased against the Persians so we can’t take their words as fact.

Looking at the maps:

  1. How do you think the Persian Empire came to be so large?
  2. Who did they conquer?


empire = a large territory controlled by one power (usually starts with a home territory and expands out to conquer other peoples)

tribute = offering goods/services to a ruler for the privilege of having good relations

circa = approximately, around (usually used with dates)

corroboration = to seek other evidence to support (or oppose) a view, usually in a PSD (primary source document).


Notes on the Persian Empire exercise: Persians (3-page handout)

This is an overview of Achaemenid Persian Empire that you are going to annotate with themes.

  1. expansion by military conquest
  2. state religion (of the Persians)
  3. diplomacy with outsiders
  4. cultural tolerance, including freedom of religion
  5. women had some rights
  6. rebellions – non-Persians felt disrespected?

Especially pay attention to the PSD* excerpts by Cyrus (top of page 2) and about the building of Darius’s new palace (bottom of page 2, top of page 3).

*primary source document

The tension between freedom and control (complete freedom = 0, complete control = 10).

2 = let them live their lives with minimum control

5 = give them rights at a certain cost; give freedom to gain control

8 = keep control with limited rights



Today we are going to explore the themes we raised yesterday in a deeper way.

    • What was the balance between freedom and control?


In the second half of the period we will work on the Greek women activity. CHW3M_Help_with_Greek_women_write-up

HW: Take notes on philosophy, sophists, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle  from 145-147.


Wed. Oct. 24, Thurs. Oct. 25, Fri. Oct. 26: Alexander the Great and Cultural Interaction


Overview of the rise of Macedonia and Alexander “the Great.” Alexander_2018 (PPT)

Hellenism = the mixing of Greek and Persian cultures


  • categorize all the events on the Alexander the Great Activity handout.
  • look for patterns in H (for political purposes) and MC (true acceptance of other cultures)
  • explain above!

True MC keywords:

tolerant, open-minded, inclusive

MC for political purposes keywords: (to be H it has to involve interaction between cultures)

calculating, manipulative, strategic, controlling, cunning, sneaky

HW: prepare for test Friday. You know there will be a question on the similarities and differences in the way the Persians and Alexander ruled the Persian Empire. You need to choose your best evidence.



Thurs and Friday: (shortened periods)

Wrap up Alexander.

Study more effectively than for the last test.


Mon. Oct. 29: Test on Greece and Persia

Greece  and Persia Test full period.




Greece/Persia Topics:

  • Intro (3 themes) and how similar and different “Greece” is to us (see video transcription handout from first class on Greece)
  • Chronology (timeline) – you need to be aware of the labels for different time periods and their order (not emphasized Oct. 2018)
  • Coming out of the dark ages
  • Athenian democracy – how fair and just was it?
  • Persian Wars notes (causes and consequences)
  • Philosophy notes – big names (not assigned Oct. 2018)
  • Greek women (vases, quotes, Aristotle PSD, textbook notes)
  • PSD: Pericles’ Funeral Oration
  • Athens vs. Sparta – more flourishing way of life (readings in handouts and text, including 117-119 on Sparta)
  • Persia – note Cyrus quote (PSD)
  • Alexander and Hellenism

Test Format (Oct. 2018): Open notebook

10 multiple choice (Knowledge)

2 Application questions (Athenian democracy, how the Persians and Alexander ran the Persian Empire – similarities and differences – continuity and change)

2 Thinking questions (based on PSDs – Pericles’ Funeral Oration and the Cyrus quote in the Persia reading)




Balance evidence and argument.





video clips from The Greeks : Crucible of Civilization can be found on You Tube –

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