What Did Children Do in Ancient Times?

Children have existed since the beginning of mankind, and their role in society has evolved over time. In ancient times, children played a significant role in society and were expected to contribute to the family’s welfare. However, their way of life and activities differed greatly from what kids do today.

Childhood in Ancient Times

In ancient times, childhood was not always considered as a distinct phase of life. Children were seen as miniature adults who needed to contribute to the family’s survival. Therefore, they had different responsibilities according to their age, gender, and social class.

Activities for Boys

Boys were primarily trained for war or labor from a young age. They would accompany their fathers on hunting expeditions or work on farms or other trades like blacksmithing or carpentry. The boys who belonged to the higher classes would receive an education that included reading, writing, mathematics, music, and literature.

Activities for Girls

Girls did not have many opportunities for education or training like boys did. They were expected to learn domestic duties like cooking, cleaning, weaving, and sewing from their mothers. Girls belonging to higher classes could learn how to read and write but only for entertainment purposes.

Gaming and Entertainment

Children in ancient times did not have access to modern-day technology but still managed to find ways of entertaining themselves. Board games like chess and checkers date back to 3000 BCE and were popular among both children and adults.

Outdoor sports like archery, swimming or running races were also common among children in ancient Greece. Roman kids played with dolls made out of clay while Egyptian children played with wooden animals.


In conclusion, childhood in ancient times was different from what we experience today. Children had more responsibilities but fewer opportunities for education or entertainment compared to modern times. Understanding the way children lived in ancient times helps us appreciate how far we have come and how much we have progressed.