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Entertainment of Ancient Rome: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Kristin Pia Hayman

Kristin taught for over 10 years in the elementary classroom. She holds a B.A. in Journalism as well as a Master's Degree in Elementary Education.

The people of Ancient Rome went to school and worked, but they also enjoyed many different forms of entertainment. This lesson explores some of the ways that Romans spent their free time, and what they did for fun.

Having Fun

Ancient Romans were known for their hard work. But what did they do when they weren't working? Well, the Romans enjoyed many of the same things that we do today. The Roman government wanted to keep its citizens happy, so they spent a lot of money funding free theater performances, chariot races, and gladiator matches. These were some of the most well-known forms of entertainment, but there were many others.

Fun & Games

The Romans loved playing all types of games. Usually, it was only men and boys who participated in sports. A popular place to hang out was at the Campus, an old soldier training ground in the city that had been converted into open space. This area was used for many sports, including foot racing, archery, wrestling, fencing, and boxing. They even had their own versions of ball sports like soccer, field hockey, and handball. Riding horses, hunting and fishing were popular activities in the country, and many people enjoyed board games like dice, checkers, and even tic-tac-toe!

Romans enjoyed games of chance
dice

The Bath

Romans loved visiting the bathhouses, and they did so almost daily. Bathhouses were really just that: large buildings that housed pools, warm baths, and saunas. The baths were not just for getting clean; they were also places to socialize and relax. People would swim, exercise, eat a meal, and talk with friends. Women and men kept to separate areas in the bathhouses, and sometimes they had separate houses altogether.

Romans often visited the baths
roman baths

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