The art (sculpture, ceramics, vase painting, wall painting.......), architecture, political structures, literature, ideas in general have a huge influence on all those things in Western society today. Greek society was able to flourish in a place where there was limited natural resources and for the most part, poor agricultural land. Also they caused the downfall of the enormous Persian empire with a fraction of the resources and military the Persians had.
There's a quote that "Rome conquered Greece, but Greece led Rome forever after by the nose". You might not consider this part to be too great, but boys would have older male teachers of sorts, with whom they had sexual relations. This related to the idea of the ideal, beautiful male body, which was considered the epitome of excellence to strive for. This was considered so important that the sweat and dirt scraped off of boys after exercising/athletic training (which they were expected to do every day)was rendered (boiled down) and given as an "elixir of youth" to older people. Women were not considered people, and neither were slaves, which there was an enormous amount of. Anywhere they had democratic government, the only people who had a say were men who had been born in that polis (city state), so a very small portion of the population.
PM me if you want any more info, I might be able to answer a few questions. I took an entry level Classics course last year at University, so I know a little bit about Ancient Greece.