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We could be heroes

14 Aug 2017

A dedicated research day is a rare treat in a busy school schedule, but on Tuesday 8 August Year 13 Classics students took a break from their usual routines to focus on heroes and hero culture.

The day began with a visit to the Teece Museum of Classical Antiquities in the Arts Centre, which is home to the James Logie Memorial Collection, one of the University of Canterbury’s great treasures. Its inaugural exhibition – We Could Be Heroes – celebrates the gods and heroes of the ancient Greeks and Romans. It is a theme reflected in an internal assessment devised by Classics teacher Chloe Harland for her Year 13 classes. “The boys are looking at hero culture, comparing some of today’s fictional and real heroes with the stories of Hercules, Odysseus and Achilles, looking at similarities and differences, and studying them in terms of the prevailing social context, learning how heroes are often a reflection of the time in which they’re born.”

Chloe says she is constantly looking for opportunities to bring Classics to life and was keen to create an assessment specifically so the boys could engage with the Logie Collection, to learn how to use primary source material, gather evidence for their ideas and, ultimately, present a cogent argument on the chosen topic. “To have this resource right on our doorstep is the best thing,” she says. “We don’t have the luxury of popping over to Italy or Greece, but we do have access to this amazing and inspiring collection, and I want to utilise it as much as I can, whenever I can.”

The Logie Collection serves as a teaching and research collection and features some priceless works of art and artefacts from the ancient world. Each piece tells a story of life in societies long gone, but not forgotten. With so much more behind the scenes than there is ever room to display, the collection should prove a ready source of information and inspiration for years to come.

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