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Set a date


Ages 8 to 11

Pupils will love this outdoor, visual and kinaesthetic activity to learn chronology.

Give 15 pupils a card with a range of different dates written on each one, ranging from 2000BC to 2007AD. Include key dates such as 0, 1066, 1665, 1939 (and any others that relate to your current topic).

Take your pupils to the playground and ask them to arrange themselves in date order. Give the more able the BC cards as this can lead to higher order questioning, such as why their numbers go "backwards" and what the 0 represents.

Give the rest of the pupils A4 cards with pictures of famous people and the dates that they were alive on.

You could include Winston Churchill, Florence Nightingale, or people from their current topic.

Ask them to position themselves on the human number line where they think their character should be. This can lead to a further discussion of dates and the order that things happen in.

Helen Towler teaches at Rye Oak School in London


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