Ancient History

Levels 1A & 2

Note: We have not read all the books on this list. Most are either stocked by reliable catalogues or are by authors with who we are familiar.


Key text: * The Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt by Elizabeth Payne

Each lesson is to be read aloud and narrated. As part of each lesson learn unfamiliar names, locate places on a map and look at relevant illustrations.

Note: Most lessons cover an entire section in the book. Where a section is split into more than one lesson, line and paragraph numbers are given to show where to stop reading.

Recommended Reference Materials

Ancient Egypt Timeline

Usborne Encyclopedia of the Ancient World

Optional Extras

Usborne Time Traveller: Pyramids and Pharaoh. An entertaining look at life in Ancient Egypt

The Orchard Book of Egyptian Gods and Pharaohs by Robert Swindells. Illustrated introduction to Egyptian mythology.

Lessons 1 to 4: The Rediscovery of Ancient Egypt (AD.1798 – AD.1822)

(1) pp. 3 – 6

(2) pp. 6 – 10

(3) pp. 10 – 14

(4) pp. 14 – 19

Lessons 5 to 9: The First Egyptians and the Dead Demigods (c.25000/10000BC – 3200BC)

(5) pp. 20 – 24

(6) pp. 24 – 29 (end of 2nd para)

(7) pp. 29 (3rd para) – 32 (2nd line)

(8) pp. 32 (2nd line) – 35 (end of 3rd para)

(9) pp. 35 (4th para) – 39

Lessons 10 to 14: “The Good God” – Pharaoh Cheops (c.2756BC – c.2553BC)

(10) pp. 40 – 45

(11) pp. 45 – 48 (4th line)

(12) pp. 48 (1st para) – 53

(13) pp. 53 – 59

(14) pp. 59 – 63

Lessons 15 to 17: “I Show Thee a Land Topsy-Turvey” (c.2553BC-c.1505BC)

(15) pp. 64 – 69

(16) pp. 69 – 74 (4th line)

(17) pp. 74 (1st para) – 79

Lessons 18 to 21: “His Majesty, Herself” – Queen Hatshepsut (c.1505BC-1484BC)

(18) pp. 80 – 83 (end of 2nd para)

(19) pp. 83 (3rd para) – 89

(20) pp. 89 – 92

(21) pp. 92 – 96

Lessons 22 to 27: “The Smiter of the Asiatics” – Pharaoh Thutmose the Third (c.1484BC-c.1461BC)

(22) pp. 97 – 101 (end of 1st para)

(23) pp. 101 (2nd para) – 106

(24) pp. 106 – 110

(25) pp. 110 – 111

(26) pp. 111 – 115 (end of 3rd para)

(27) pp.115 (last 2 lines) – 118

Lessons 28 to 35: The Criminal of Akhetaton – Pharaoh Akhnaton (c.1361BC-c.1344BC)

(28) pp. 119 – 122

(29) pp. 122 – 127

(30) pp. 127 – 130

(31) pp. 130 – 132

(32) pp. 132 – 137

(33) pp. 137 – 141

(34) pp. 141 – 146 (4th line)

(35) pp. 146 (1st para) – 152

Lessons 36 to 40: The beginning of the End – Pharaoh Rameses the Second (c.1291BC – c.1224BC)

(36) pp. 153 – 156 (5th line)

(37) pp. 156 (1st para) – 160 (2nd para)

(38) pp. 160 (last 4 lines) – 164

(39) pp. 164 – 169

(40) pp. 169 – 172

Optional Further Reading


Tut’s Mummy Lost and Found by Judy Donnelly. Easy reader telling the story of the discover of Tutenkhamun’s tomb.

The Boy Pharaoh: Tutenkhamun by Noel Streatfeild. A recreation of the life of Tutenkhamun by a gifted author of both children’s fiction and historical non-fiction. Out of print.

Mummies Made in Egypt by Aliki. A clear, thorough description of the mummification process.

Cleopatra by Diane Stanley

Pyramid by David Macaulay


Senefer by Beatrice Lumpkin

Pepi and the Secret Names by Jill Paton Walsh

Bill and Pete Go Down the Nile by Tomie de Paola. Just for fun! (Not historical)

Pharoah’s Boat by David Weitzman

Exodus by Brian Wildsmith

Joseph by Brian Wildsmith


Tales of Ancient Egypt by Roger Lancelyn Green. Retelling of Egyptian myths by a friend of C.S.Lewis.

Egyptian Treasures: Mummies and Myths told by Jim Weiss (audio).


Casting the Gods Adrift: a Tale of Ancient Egypt by Geraldine McCaughrean. Set in the time of Akhenaten. Could be read alone or as a read aloud.

Boy of the Pyramids by Ruth Fosdick Jones

Gift of the River by Enid La Monte Meadowcroft OOP

Peeps at Many Lands: Ancient Egypt by James Baikie

The following books are written for slightly older children and may be more suitable for Level 2:

The Golden Goblet by Eloise Jarvis McGraw

Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw

God King by Joanne Williamson

Shadow Hawk by Andre Norton – set during the Hyksos invasions, c.1590

The Cat of Bubastes by G.A.Henty


Key text: *Famous Men of Greece (Greenleaf Press)

Alternative Option *The Story of the Greeks by Helene Guerber

Optional Further Reading


Alexander the Great by Nikos Kazantzakis

Science in Ancient Greece by Kathlyn Gay


Tales of the Greek Heroes by Roger Lancelyn Green

The Luck of Troy by Roger Lancelyn Green

The Tale of Troy by Roger Lancelyn Green

Greek Myths by Olivia Coolidge

The Trojan War by Olivia Coolidge


The Crown of Violet by Geoffrey Trease – story of an Athenian boy and his family, with a Greek drama theme. OOP.

The Spartan Twins by Lucy Fitch Perkins

Children of the Fox by Jill Paton Walsh

Theras & His Town by Caroline Dale Snedeker – an Athenian boy tries to adjust to life in Sparta

The Secret Arrow by Kenneth Lillington – Sparta and Peracles


Key text: *Famous Men of Rome (Greenleaf Press)

Alternative Option *The Story of the Romans by Helene Guerber

Optional Further Reading


Augustus Caesar’s World by Genevieve Foster

Lives of Famous Romans by Olivia Coolidge

Caesar’s Gallic Wars by Olivia Coolidge

City by David Macaulay

Science in Ancient Rome by Jacqueline L.Harris


The Orchard Book of Roman Myths by Geraldine McCaughrean


Detectives in Togas by Henry Winterfeld

Mystery of the Roman Ransom by Henry Winterfeld

The Pirates of Pompeii by Caroline Lawrence – mystery set in 79AD (also other books in the same series including The Secrets of Vesuvius, The Assassins of Rome and The Thieves of Ostia)

A Triumph for Flavius by Caroline Dale Snedeker

The Time Travelling Cat and the Roman Eagle by Julia Jarman

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