The year 2014/2015 which has just ended was an opportunity for me to carry out a project around time in cycle 2 (see here). I therefore voluntarily went beyond the barriers of the programs (I anticipate comments on this subject) to work on the great periods of history with my CP/CE1.

Of course, there was no question of doing history like in cycle 3, but simply of giving some reference points that could be transposed to other disciplines since this project touched on other fields (literature, writing, arts, etc.).

Logically, I therefore leaned on the construction of a chronological frieze adapted to young children for whom the concept of time is still quite abstract. I had a history frieze in the class, but several problems arose since it:

  • contained too much information for children in cycle 2,
  • insisted on the dates (and that was not at all my objective),
  • did not respect the time scale at all.

So I decided to make one and I thought you might be interested. Nothing grandiose, “handmade”… but the result looks pretty good so here it is…


I had a space of 4.50 meters.

It is of course impossible to represent all of prehistory, so my frieze begins with a roll, intended to represent “all the time that I didn’t have room to unroll in the class”. We’ve discussed this a lot with the kids since we started the year with a dinosaur theme.

Thus, in concrete terms, my timeline begins in – 15,000 and ends today. As the goal was not to precisely place dates, but to have an idea of ​​the length of the periods, that seemed quite sufficient to me.

Realization of the timeline

I took a scale of 40 years old = 1cm. So I arrived at a frieze of about 4.25 m.

For the realization, I had at school a roll of paper 21 cm high, ideal for the occasion. But I could have done the same thing by putting A4 sheets end to end.

Here is how I plotted the periods:

Prehistory – 15,000 to – 3,000 12,000 years = 300 cm
antiquity – 3000 to 476 3,476 years = 86.9 cm
Middle Ages 476 to 1,492 1016 years = 25.4 cm
Modern times 1492 to 1789 297 years = 7.4 cm
19th c. 1789 to 1914 125 years = 3.1 cm
20th c. and our times 1914 to 2014 100 years = 2.5 cm

I circled the top and bottom with one color per period (I colored a strip with a marker, quite simply).

Then I pasted the names of the periods. You will find the labels in the file at the bottom of the article.


Using the timeline

Throughout the year, we completed the frieze with images corresponding to everything we learned about each period (during our readings, school outings, etc.).


I put here for download the labels that we used in class, but everyone is free to adapt according to their needs (see explanations on page 1 of the file).

For prehistory, given the space available on the frieze, there was no problem fitting the labels on it. For the following periods, we of course had to overflow on the wall (but I can no longer find the photos…).


Info Many images come from the CD of Marianne which I am talking about here.

See as well : The labels for the frieze – Cycle 3

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