This primary resource introduces children to Viking life, transport and voyages. Discover the features of a Viking longship and how young Vikings learnt to identify the right kind of trees to build a ship with. How did they assemble the ships? What materials did they use? Where did they go on their journeys?

Pupils will learn what Viking ships were used for in this stop motion animated National Geographic video.

The video can be used in study group tasks for understanding more about Viking transport and for class discussion about Viking life.

Activity: Ask children to choose draw a Viking ship, or model one out of card and straws / lollipop sticks. Discuss what materials they could use for the sail. Pupils could also take the story of Harald, or research Odin, the father of the Nordic gods using our Viking primary resource: Old Norse Gods sheet.


N.B. The following information for mapping the resource documents to the school curriculum is specifically tailored to the English National Curriculum and Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. We are currently working to bring specifically tailored curriculum resource links for our other territories; including South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. If you have any queries about our upcoming curriculum resource links, please email:


This History primary resource assists with teaching the following History objectives from the National Curriculum:

  • Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind.
  • Know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world.
  • Gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales. 


National Curriculum Key Stage 2 History objective:

  • Pupils should be taught about: the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor


This History primary resource assists with teaching the following Social Studies Second level objective from the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence:

  • I can discuss why people and events from a particular time in the past were important, placing them within a historical sequence
  • I can compare and contrast a society in the past with my own and contribute to a discussion of the similarities and differences

Watch the video:

Download primary resource



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