Living History readings.  For a complete schedule, please visit the Ambleside Online site.  I also keep my notes and links that I found helpful for each story here.

Fifty Famous Stories Retold – Coloring pages for many of the stories in this collection.  Wiki link for each story.

The Sword of Damocles

Damon and Pythias

A Laconic Answer

The Brave Three Hundred

  • Picture of King Leonidas.
  • Picture of King Xerxes.
  • Some really great information complete with pictures and maps about the Battle of Thermopylae once you get past the Bagger Vance pictures.
  • Another site with a more in depth description of the story and a lively debate of comments.  Some really good pictures, too.

Alexander and Bucephelas

  • A very nice picture of Bucephelas in action.
  • statue and mosaic of Alexander and his horse.
  • song praising Alexander the Great in his original language with Greek images and English subtitles.
  • Correct pronunciation of Bucephelas.


The Story of Regulus

  • More history surrounding this story and an approximate date if you are doing BOC.  Probably not good info for kids.
  • Regulus Returning to Carthage is a beautiful painting that could allow for some interesting observations.  After hearing your kids’ narrations, show them the picture.  Ask them to find Regulus, his wife, and his sons.  Look at the crowd, are they happy, angry, relieved, rejoicing?  How does Regulus look?  Does he look happy to be home?

Cornelia’s Jewels

  • I like this story.  I may not be able to get through without tearing up because I’m a softy like that.  This is creating a perfect opportunity for me to answer a recent question from my daughter.  She asked, “Mommy, is it possible to take anything to Heaven?”.  I gave her a simple, “No”, and moved on.  After reading this story, I was reminded of something I once read, “It is true you cannot take anything to heaven, but you can lead your children to be there with you”.  Isn’t that a lovely thought?
  • Matthew has a perfect verse to go with this story and gives the answer I meant to, and should have, given my daughter when she asked.  I am grateful to my Heavenly Father for second chances.
  • True history of Cornelia.  It’s more for your own information, not for reading to your children.

Horatius at the Bridge

  • In reading this story, did you notice the poetic verses?  Here is the poem in it’s entirety.  It is very long and I do not suggest making your kids sit through it.  But you may find a few verses to share and talk about.
  • Information about Roman Soldiers with video links.
  • A virtual tour of the Tiber.  You can also explore the virtual map of Rome.


  • Information about the statue of him in his namesake town of Cincinnati, Ohio.
  • This is a good lesson on leadership.  Some of the greatest leaders in history never wanted to lead, but people called them to it.  They understood that to lead is actually to serve.  Discuss ways with your kids on how they can lead by serving.

An Island Story – Many coloring pages and other goodies can be found for the kings and queens this book covers here.

The Stories of Albion and Brutus

The Coming of the Romans

  • Galley animation here and here
  • A rather long, but interesting documentary on Britain before the Romans.  Probably best to watch it yourself first and then decide if your children would benefit from it and if it is appropriate for your family.  There are quite a few images of the beauty of Britain, including her noted white cliffs.
  • Interactive timeline.
  • Info on Julius Caesar.  I will most likely read the first sentence on this page and show them the picture of Caesar’s bust.  My kids like pictures.
  • An online book with a picture of a reconstructed British chariot on page 1, a glossary of term on page 46, and more information than most would ever need to know about chariots in between.
  • A map of ancient Rome at it’s greatest extent.
  • A map of modern Europe as comparison.  I will most likely be printing these both to lay side by side so we can explore the changes together.
  • An explanation on Roman standards and a rather portly aquilifer, but he will do.

The Romans Come Again

  • Picture of Cassivellaunus and a good example of what the Britons may have looked like.
  • A diagram of a Roman soldier and a lesson on Eph 6:10-19 as a bonus!  Note:  the actual lessons are in later blog posts, here, here, here, here and here
  • A very elementary explanation of the Roman invasions of Britain.

How Caligula Conquered Britain, and How Caractacus Refused to be Conquered

  • A bust of Caligula as well as a physical description and brief bio.
  • An image of the proud Caractacus.
  • Introduce the word ‘patriot‘.


The Battle of Stamford Bridge

  • If you’re looking for a little more background on this story, here is a nicely written article.  It also has some quotes by Harald Hardrada and nice pictures depicting the event.  I would not suggest making your child sit through this reading, but rather read for your own background knowledge.  I would, however, show the pictures because it can help bring these stories to life to see what these different men of old looked like.

The Battle of Hastings

William the Conqueror – The Story of Hereward the Wake

  • A short movie with some off color humor but surprisingly accurate account.
  • Williams final conquest of England.  According to page 249 of this book, the witch really did show her backside to the English.

William the Conqueror – Death of the King

  • This article tells more about the Domesday Book.  This was much like a census, and according to H.E. Marshall, this was a very wise thing that William I did.  Others may view it as an invasion of privacy.
  • A short movie putting a comedic twist to the end of the story of William the Conqueror.  As always, watch before sharing because you may night find it necessary or appropriate for your children.

The Story of William the Red

Henry I

Very interesting history of Henry I including a very nice description of his appearance.

Death of Henry I.  (Funny)

Beauclerc pronounced.

Art of the Wreck of the White Ship

This Country of Ours

How the Vikings of old Sought and Found New Lands

OR Lief the Lucky by D’Aulaire

Synge’s Discovery of New Worlds 

The Dark Ages

  • A 90 minute documentary of the whole span of the Dark Ages.  You may want to watch it for your own information and only share parts with your children as some of it may not be age appropriate.

King Arthur and His Knights

The Hero of Two Nations

The Hardy Northmen

Story of Mankind 


The Norsemen

Central Europe / Feudalism

A couple short videos (knights), (feudalism), describing the roll of knights in the feudal system of europe.

Scroll down to find a chart that easily explains feudalism.

Trial and Triumph

Polycarp Witness in the Arena (69-155 AD)

Blandina Martyr of Lyons (155-177 AD)

  • An extensive list of verses on martyrdom.  As you read through these, select a few to share with your children.  The stories in this book are very graphic and terrifying to think about, but being a Christian, it is important to understand the sacrifices made by others for Christ’s sake.  Do not read these stories without sharing the hope these martyrs had in Christ and the hope we now share.
  • This is the same story with a little more detail here and a little less there.  Read whichever you prefer.
  • Look at this map of France and find the Rhone River and Lyons.

Charlemagne Protector of the Church (742-814 AD)

Alfred the Great Christian King (847-899 AD)

  • The story of Alfred the Great filmed several decades ago, but still relevant and nicely done.  It is uploaded in six parts. I have only linked part one here, but the rest of it should be easy to find if you wish to watch the entire documentary.

Benjamin Franklin by Ingri D’Aulaire

  • This is the same info as the book but has some very neat pictures.

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