Activity Overview

Researching real people and events helps students to gain a more concrete understanding of the culture, lives and diverse perspectives of people who lived in Ancient times. Giving students the perspective of those who lived during a time period helps them go beyond simply memorizing dates and names to acquire a more substantial, empathetic and realistic view of the period. In this activity, students will create a biography poster about a famous or significant figure or event in Ancient Greece.

Teachers can assign students a specific person or an event or they may give students a choice. Teachers may wish to provide resources such as books or an online encyclopedia for students to read about their person or event.

These posters can be printed out, laminated and hung around the room as a visual reminder of notable people and events from the time of Ancient Greece. Students can also present their posters to their classmates, sharing their knowledge about their person. Thus combining research, writing and public speaking skills into one powerful assignment

Find more biography poster templates to add to this assignment if desired!

Example Greeks to Research

  • Socrates: Greek philosopher credited with being the founder of Western philosophy and the Socratic method of teaching
  • Plato: Student of Socrates and founder of the Academy in Athens
  • Aristotle: Student of Plato, philosopher, scientist and teacher of Alexander the Great
  • Aeschylus: Playwright considered the father of tragedy
  • Sophocles: Popular playwright who wrote over 100 plays
  • Euripides: Great Greek tragedy writer
  • Aristophanes: Comedic playwright, considered the father of comedy
  • Aesop: Famed writer of Aesop’s fables which used talking animals and contained a moral in every story
  • Homer: Famous poet of epic poems the Iliad and the Odyssey
  • Sappho: Female lyrical poet who wrote romantic poetry
  • Herodotus: Historian who is called the Father of History
  • Archimedes: Known as one of the greatest scientists, inventors and mathematicians
  • Hippocrates: Medical scientist considered the Father of Western Medicine. Doctors take a “Hippocratic Oath” to do no harm
  • Alexander the Great: Considered one of the greatest military commanders who expanded the Greek empire during his reign
  • Pericles: Leader during the “golden age of Greece”
  • Aspasia of Miletus: Partner of Pericles and woman who had more influence than was conventional for the time. She started a school for women
  • Agnodice of Athens: First female midwife known to history
  • Hypatia of Alexandria: Known as the earliest female philosopher, astronomer, and mathematician
  • Arete of Cyrene: One of the first female philosophers, her father was a student of Socrates and he passed the teachings on to his daughter, who in turn taught her son
  • Hydna of Scione: Famous and accomplished female swimmer and diver. During a Persian invasion in 480 BCE she and her father swam out to the Persian fleet and cut their moorings causing them to drift where some crashed and sank!
  • Telesilla of Argos: Female lyric poet. She also helped against an invasion of Spartan forces in her city by banding together with other armed women and enslaved people to drive them out

Suggested Events from Ancient Greece

  • 776 BCE - First Olympic Games. They were held every 4 years in honor of Zeus.
  • 750 BCE - Homer wrote the Iliad and the Odyssey, famous epic poems.
  • 743 BCE - War between Sparta and Messenia begins
  • 650 BCE - Ancient Greek Tyrant of Corinth comes to power
  • 621 BCE - Draconian laws are introduced by lawyer Draco which makes even minor offenses punishable by death.
  • 570 BCE - Pythagoras is born, the ancient Greek scientist, mathematician, philosopher and founder of geometry’s Pythagorean Theorem
  • 508 BCE - Cleisthenes, the “Father of Athenian Democracy”, introduces a constitution and the world’s first democracy.
  • 490 BCE - Greek v Persian War begins including the famous Battle of Marathon.
  • 468 BCE - Famous playwright, Sophocles begins to write for the theatre.
  • 432 BCE - The Parthenon is completed in Athens on the Acropolis.
  • 431 BCE - Athens v. Sparta wars begin (The Peloponnesian Wars)
  • 399 BCE - Socrates is put to death for corrupting the youth of Athens
  • 386 BCE - Plato, student of Socrates, founded the Academy.
  • 342 BCE - Aristotle, student of Plato and another famous philosopher scientist and mathematician, begins to tutor Alexander the Great.
  • 336 BCE - Alexander the Great becomes king
  • 333 BCE - Alexander the Great defeats the Persians
  • 332 BCE - Alexander the Great conquers Eqypt
  • 323 BCE - Alexander the Great dies and Greece begins its decline as Romans begin to gain in power and influence.
  • 300 BCE - Euclid, a Greek mathematician, writes Elements, a very influential treatise of 13 books on mathematics.
  • 146 BCE - In the Battle of Corinth, Greece falls to Rome and is absorbed into the Roman Empire.
  • 31 BCE - Rome defeats Egypt finally ending the “Hellenistic Era.”

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 6-8

Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)

Type of Assignment Individual

Type of Activity: Biographies

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/7/2] Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/7/6] Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and link to and cite sources as well as to interact and collaborate with others, including linking to and citing sources.
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/7/7] Conduct short research projects to answer a question, drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions for further research and investigation.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Due Date:

Objective: Research a person or event from Ancient Greece. Create a poster that includes important details and engaging imagery.

Student Instructions:

  1. Choose a famous person or event.
  2. Using school resources, conduct research on a famous person or event and take notes using a graphic organizer.
  3. On the poster, include your person’s name and dates of birth, death and major accomplishments in sequence. OR if doing an event: include the major details of the event in order of occurrence.
  4. Add appropriate scenes, characters and items to illustrate each cell. To find images related to Ancient Greece, type “Greece” into the search bar.
  5. Save and submit your storyboard.

Requirements: Person’s image, name, dates of birth/death, accomplishment, OR date of event and major details in order of occurrence.

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