King's College School

Coeducational Independent Prep school in Cambridge



Department Aims & Objectives

The Classics Department at King's has a strong tradition and a reputation amongst Senior Schools and parents for turning out children who are very well grounded in the Latin and Ancient Greek languages. At King's, Latin is studied by all pupils: we believe that with the right strategy and support in place, Latin can be of great benefit to all children, whatever their ability level. We make our lessons fun, engaging and stimulating, offering a multi-sensory approach to those children who find languages more challenging, while providing a more traditional, rigorous approach for our more linguistically-able students. The vast majority of children go on to study Latin in Year 9 and beyond, having learned that it feels good to have achieved success in a subject which is generally regarded as very demanding; a significant proportion of those who study Greek in Years 7 and 8 also go on to study Classics at University level.

Our aims are manifold, but primarily:

  • to create and foster an awareness and love of our classical heritage - including the language, the culture, the history, the art and the literature
  • to give a sense of achievement through the unlocking of the mysteries of the classical languages.

Along the way, the children naturally develop their ability to recognise patterns and apply logical thought; English grammar is reinforced, and word roots are investigated. The learning of modern languages (especially, although not exclusively, those of the Romance family, including French, Spanish and Italian) is facilitated by seeing the structure of language through Latin and Greek and by similarities of vocabulary. The study of mythology enhances the children's love of modern literature and art; the study of ancient history from the Persians to Roman Britain provides context to modern history; the study of the gods encourages discussion about comparative religions; the study of classical art and architecture generates an understanding and love of the buildings and artefacts which surround us.