Key stage 2
Pupils should continue to develop a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding
of British, local and world history, establishing clear narratives within and across the
periods they study. They should note connections, contrasts and trends over time and
develop the appropriate use of historical terms. They should regularly address and
sometimes devise historically valid questions about change, cause, similarity and
difference, and significance. They should construct informed responses that involve
thoughtful selection and organisation of relevant historical information. They should
understand how our knowledge of the past is constructed from a range of sources.
In planning to ensure the progression described above through teaching the British, local
and world history outlined below, teachers should combine overview and depth studies to
help pupils understand both the long arc of development and the complexity of specific
aspects of the content.
Pupils should be taught about:
The Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward
This could include:
Viking raids and invasion
resistance by Alfred the Great and Athelstan, first king of England
further Viking invasions and Danegeld
Anglo-Saxon laws and justice
Edward the Confessor and his death in 1066
The Vikings came from three countries of Scandinavia: Denmark, Norway and Sweden. The name ‘Viking’ comes from a language called ‘Old Norse’ and means ‘a pirate raid’ or ‘pirate raider’. People who went off raiding in ships were said to be ‘going Viking’.
The Viking age in European history was about AD 700 to 1100. During this period many Vikings left Scandinavia and travelled to other countries, such as Britain and Ireland, France and even as far as modern Turkey. Some went to fight and steal treasure. Others settled in new lands as farmers, craftsmen or traders.
Southern Britain (England) had been settled by the Anglo-Saxons. In AD 787 three Viking longships landed in southern England. The Vikings fought the local people, then sailed away. This first raid is recorded in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. It was the start of a fierce struggle between English and Vikings. The English called the Viking invaders ‘Danes’ but they came from Norway as well as Denmark.
Norwegian Vikings or ‘Norse’ sailed to Scotland, where they made settlements in the north and on the Orkney and Shetland islands. Vikings also settled on the Isle of Man. Vikings raided Wales, but few made homes there.