Timelines for Schools – lessons from history

churchfields junior hall history timeline

Blog updated on 12th January, 2024.

Timelines for schools allow pupils to reflect on past events that shape our every day experiences.

A lot of schools have used the lockdown period to work on school improvement and maintenance projects. Many of those who commissioned timeline themed Wall Art have asked us to include the Covid-19 pandemic within their designs. And for good reason too – what we learn from this experience will influence the rest of our lives, and those of future generations.

Looking back at some of the major events, discoveries and famous faces throughout History gives us a frame of reference for the present. When students can see how the past affects their lives today through History Wall Art, the past becomes a lot more relatable!

“If I have seen further, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants” – Sir Isaac Newton

Girls School bespoke history timeline installation corridor wall art timelines for schools

The chronology of History

It’s useful to encourage children to explore the concept of chronology from an early age. Toddlers begin to understand the value of sequencing when they make a tower from stacking cups. They grasp the concept of time through routines, predictability and set events in their day. There are a number of different types of timeline wall art that can help expand on their knowledge on this subject.

If you’re an EYFS teacher, you’ll likely build on this by encouraging pupils to explore time in relation to their lives. You may ask children to organise family photos in order or share a timeline of what they did over the weekend. As they get older, they’ll delve even further into the concept of History and chronology.

Looking back at the sequence of Historical events gives pupils a sense of cause and effect. They begin to realise that most discoveries were only made possible thanks to the work of those who came before them.

Timelines for schools allow students to explore the events of History in chronological order. This helps them track how humanity has evolved to where we are today. Being highly visual makes for an immersive experience and helps pupils remember the sequence of events too.

Coping with change

Heraclitus said that, “The only thing that is constant is change“. Throughout each era, humanity has been shaped by incredible, and often unanticipated, change. From pandemics, famine and war to discoveries, inventions and revolutions, we’ve seen how humans have struggled, adapted and thrived through change.

As we continue through a period of unprecedented change in our current lives, pupils can take comfort from History. When children feel anxious and uncertain about their future, they can refer to the past to see how people coped with similar changes. Strength, resilience, co-operation and hope have inspired humans to overcome immense challenges in the past. And, students will be unwittingly developing their own set of values and character traits while moving through the Covid-19 pandemic.

This is a good time to discuss with students how they believe the current experiences will shape our future;

Pupils will undoubtedly feel a sense of significance at being part of History in the making.

“History is who we are and why we are the way we are.” – David McCullough

Primary School history themed stairwell educational wall art timelines for schools

War and Peace

We were reminded as we celebrated VE day recently that the World Wars have altered the course of History forever. In fact, we’re asked to include both World Wars in most of the History timelines for schools that we design. These prolific events showed a strength of the human spirit in the face of adversity.

War provides a powerful discussion point for pupils in relation to their life today. In addition to the hardships people faced, many students will also recognise the positive outcomes of the world wars.

Some might even argue that wars were necessary for progression in various aspects of History; from women’s rights to major advances in technology. Others may aspire to help others and make a difference like the heroes they’ve learned about in their History lessons.

The evolution of Science

Today, we cannot imagine a world without penicillin, X-rays and vaccines against measles, TB and Meningitis. One day perhaps future generations won’t be able to imagine living in a world without the Covid-19 vaccine.

And they’ll think about the incredible Scientists and medics who worked on developing this critical and life-saving vaccine. As with all other medical advancements in History, the discovery of a Covid-19 vaccine will make its way into History timelines for schools, text books, lesson plans and Scientific journals.

Science shows us that in order to achieve progress as humans, we need to keep moving forward from where we’ve been before. Failure creates the opportunity to learn, grow in confidence and build resilience.

As Thomas Edison said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time”

Edison School Science timeline inspiring corridor Wall Art timelines for schools

Using timelines for schools to aid learning

Timelines for schools are a fantastic way to help pupils engage with key events from History. So, we’d encourage teachers, parents and other educators to save, share and print any of the timelines in our case studies section*. These can serve as a super learning aid and, if you stick them on your walls in the home or classroom, will help children remember the information too.

*Please do not print these for commercial use

Here are a few examples of timelines for schools to get you started!

History timeline for St Edmund’s Girls’ School

Science timeline for Edison School

History timeline for Drapers’ Maylands Primary School

History timeline for Churchfields Junior School

Subject timeline for Alperton Community School


A note about service from Promote Your School

In these uncertain times, looking after our colleagues and customers is our first priority. We are closely following Public Health England’s guidance, while keeping disruption to a minimum.

If you’d like to find out more about bespoke Wall Art for your school, do get in touch. Our entire design process can be conducted remotely and we’ll install at a time that is suitable for you. Get in touch to arrange a consultation or visit our portfolio to view more of our work.