Learning from the past

In an unsettled time, faced with an uncertain future, the past has never been more relevant.

There’s so much history can teach us, and its lessons provide us with a deeper understanding of how humanity can and does rise to the challenges it faces. History is filled with stories of what, and what not, to do. It shows us that no matter what, there are always those around us who will help, there are still adventures to be had, there are solutions waiting to be found, and there are better times ahead.

If you’re a grown-up, your own life experiences can teach you this, but if you’re a kid, it helps to hear it from someone else. History is full of mistakes, but it’s also often reassuring, fortifying, and even inspiring. Not to mention, history is chock-full of incredible (and incredibly bizarre) facts that you can use to impress your friends when you – very soon – meet again.

So, here’s our list of top history series to dive into! Some silly, some serious, some seriously silly...

Horrible Histories

If you've got a joker on your hands, this series might be just what you need. The Horrible Histories series covers a multitude of topics from WWII, Tudor England, histories of the Romans, Aztecs and Ancient Egypt, so there is definitely something for everyone. All the stories are intertwined with some truly fabulous illustrations, which makes them all the more fun to read. Suitable for 7+. 

The Long-Lost Secret Diary of the World’s Worst...

These fantastic tales detail the diaries of the "world's worst" pirates, astronauts, and dinosaur hunters, to name a few, putting us inside their heads. They are hilarious and while these historical figures may be considered a little hapless, struggling to carry out their roles and getting things horribly wrong, they will have your child in stitches while they learn the importance of not being afraid to learn from their own mistakes! There are fact boxes featured throughout, as well as a glossary and timeline, providing historical context and background. Suitable for 7+.

You Wouldn’t Want to Be a…

Strap in, because these picture books are like NONE you've read before. You're about to learn just what it was like to be a... Roman soldier, Victorian servant, Suffragette or Egyptian ruler, plus loads more! The humorous illustrations and interesting narratives encourage readers to get emotionally involved with the characters, aiding their understanding of what life would have been like. Informative captions, a complete glossary, and an index make this series an ideal introduction to the conventions of non-fiction texts for young readers. Suitable for 6+.

Tony Robinson’s Weird World of Wonders

Robinson covers a myriad of historical topics in his "Weird World of Wonders" collection. He covers both World Wars, Romans & Greeks, The Worst Children's Jobs in History, and much more. This is history, but not as you've experienced it before! Suitable for 9+. 

Little People, Big Dreams

This bestselling series of biographies details the lives of outstanding figures from history; Coco Chanel, Jane Austen, Martin Luther King Jr, Zaha Hadid, and Maria Montessori are but a few of the titles, and they are in good company. All the people featured achieved incredible things, and they all have one thing in common: they were once children with a dream. This empowering series offers inspiring messages to children of all ages, in a range of formats; the board books are told in simple sentences, perfect for reading aloud to babies and toddlers, and the hardback versions present expanded stories for beginning readers. Suitable for 1+.


So there you have it! A rather comprehensive list of texts that will fully immerse your child in history. Let's just hope they find their way out!