Chronological Thinking Presentation & Lesson Plan Resource

Understanding history using time lesson resource and student printout. Periodisation including the Three-Age System and western time period. Suitable for any budding historian. Download today and use in the classroom or homeschool environment.

Download Historical Key Skills: Chronological Thinking Materials

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Chronological Thinking

This resource includes chronological thinking key skill used in several topics including:

  • American History
  • China’s Dynasty
  • Tudor England
  • Nazi Germany
  • Development of warfare
  • History of Medicine
  • The Blitz during WWII
  • Medieval England
  • Reconstruction Amendments


The term ‘history’ comes from the Greek word ‘historia’ which means inquiry, investigation and written account of past events. Herodotus (484 BC-425 BC), an ancient Greek historian, is regarded as the Father of History due to his publication of The Histories which detailed his inquiry on the origins of the Greco-Persian Wars. Today, many consider history to be a tool in understanding events of the past, present and future.

One of the common methods in understanding history is through chronological thinking. This historical key skill expects learners to distinguish events in different times. Mere memorisation of dates is not the goal of this skill, but rather the ability to understand and analyse patterns of change and continuity over time. Learners should be able to use chronology in understanding why events happened as well as in writing their own histories.

In Europe, scholars divide the study of history into periods. This culturally constructed study of history begins with the ancient world and continues up to the contemporary period. Periodisation is the process of quantifying the past in relatively similar characteristics. Through this, learners can see gradual historical change through time.


At the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • Understand history using time
  • Be familiar with periodisation and its relativity
  • Analyse the applicability of chronological thinking in written and visual sourcesis


  • Understanding history using time
  • Periodisation including the Three-Age System and western time period
  • Visual and written chronology
  • Examples of presentations in chronology

Resource Examples

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