Chronological Understanding

Sequencing, events, stories, pictures and periods over time to show how different times relate to each other and contribute to a coherent understanding of the past. You don’t have to teach topics in chronological order but need to relate the topics you teach to their chronological context.

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  • Constructivist chronology and Horrible Histories

    Article

    IntroductionI chose Horrible Histories for this exploration of children's understanding of chronology because I thought it would be fun - and I approve of the Horrible Histories. They use sources, question sources, provide alternative interpretations and recognise what is not known and that historians are not always ‘right'. They give information...

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  • Chronology & Topics at Key Stage 2

    Article

    The nearly complete history of almost everythingIntroduction

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  • Chronology and local history: Year 6

    Article

    Editorial note: This short paper introduces a highly creative, imaginative and enthralling case-study of a local history project for year 6 pupils. The teaching programme has a chronological spine that provides coherence and focus. Chronology is one element in the pupils' ‘Doing History' that draws upon a full range of...

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  • An Olympic Timeline

    Article

    IntroductionThe Olympic movement provides the prefect opportunity to consider the broad sweep of chronology linking ancient times to the present day, where children can find examples of both change and continuity over a long period of time (see Ferguson, 2011). This lesson idea, planned for Years 4/5, looks at how...

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  • Citizenship and the Olympics

    Article

    Introduction Citizenship links. While most of us engage with the nature of the sporting aspects of an Olympics throughout its modern day reincarnation, there are many aspects of the Games on and off the sporting field that have a clear linkage to citizenship. National identity, human rights, extremism, the media....

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  • Primary History and planning for teaching the Olympics - four curricular models

    Article

    IntroductionThree of the most recent curricular editions of Primary History, PH 50, Autumn 2008 , PH 53, Autumn 2009 and PH 57, Spring 2011 are directly relevant to teaching the Olympics.PH 50, Autumn 2008 History Education in the 21st Century  Primary Curriculum raised the issues surrounding history's possible role in...

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  • William Brookes and the Olympic Games

    Article

    History flows like a river, sometimes quiet and unobtrusive, sometimes a raging torrent with wide-ranging effects on the world around us. It is punctuated by momentous events and significant individuals, who impact on its direction and form for the future. As a curriculum subject, history can be approached through significant...

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  • How to teach chronology

    Article

    IntroductionChronology is the air that history breathes and without it children's historical understanding is limited. Chronological understanding enables pupils to place their learning within the 'bigger picture‘ and better remember historical people, periods and events. So:Key Stage 1 pupils should be aware of terms that describe the passing of time...

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  • Children's Thinking: Developmental psychology and history education

    Article

    Editorial note: Hilary Cooper outlines the main features of historical thinking. These ideas are embedded in the government's current requirements for teaching National Curriculum History [England]IntroductionIt is important that children develop a coherent, chronological understanding of the ‘big picture' of the past, of key events, people, movements and changes...

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  • Learning to engage with documents through role play

    Article

    IntroductionFirst let me say that I did not research the materials used or plan this lesson. For this I must acknowledge, with thanks, that this is the work of my colleague, Mike Huggins, and the senior assistant archivist in the Cumbrian Record office, Margaret Owen. However, I subsequently taught this...

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  • Using classic fiction to support the study of childhood in Victorian times

    Article

    Please note: This article pre-dates the current National Curriculum and some content and references may be outdated. Classic fiction provides useful sources of information for investigating the lives, beliefs and values of people in the past. In this article Ann Cowling describes activities undertaken with student teachers which may also serve as models...

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  • Doing history in the early years and foundation stage

    Article

    Please note: This article pre-dates the current National Curriculum and some content and references may be outdated. Introducing the youngest children to the concept of history can be a challenging prospect for some foundation stage practitioners, particularly if they feel their experience of the subject has been limited or their own memories of...

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  • 'Doing Local History' through maps and drama

    Article

    Editorial note: John Fines produced two case studies of Local History for the Nuffield Primary History Project. One on them is published here for the first time.

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  • A history of the world - 100 objects that tell a story

    Article

    Editorial comment: A History of the World is the most creative, imaginative and dynamic development in primary History Education for thirty years. It ties in perfectly with and supports the government's re-vitalisation of primary education that the independent Cambridge Primary  Review and the Rose Review of the Primary Curriculum should...

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  • Pride in place: What does historical geographical and social understanding look like?

    Article

    Pride in place: What does historical geographical and social understanding look like?

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  • Cross Curricular Project on a famous person

    Article

    Please note: This article pre-dates the current National Curriculum and some content and references may be outdated. If you are considering studying someone other than Florence Nightingale you have two basic options. You can either choose a local character who would be more relevant to the children, or you could study someone who...

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  • A Vision of Britain Through Time

    Article

    This free-to-use and publically accessible website has now been updated and re-launched with a new look, extra content and improved search tools thanks largely to funding from JISC (the Joint Information Systems Committee of Britain's universities).Among the latest additions is a full listing of every General Election result, 1832 to...

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  • Chronology: blank timelines

    Article

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  • Helping students make sense of historical time

    Article

    Once upon a time, educators believed that there was a property of children’s minds known as ‘understanding of time’. According to this belief, young children had little ability to understand when things happened, even within their own immediate experiences, much less in the distant past. As they got older, their...

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  • Teaching with Meaning: Supporting Historical Understanding in the Primary Classroom

    Article

    In essence, history is a record of human affairs. The problem in making this record is that events are past and gone and have to be reconstructed. Evidence may be uncertain and incomplete. Inevitably, several plausible accounts of an event are often possible. As mental re-constructions, these accounts are our...

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