History of Scotland: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Angela Burke

Angela has over ten years of teaching experience in Special Education, classroom teaching and GT. She has a master's degree in Special Ed with an emphasis in Gifted.

Scotland has a history rich with legends of noble families, kings, queens and even Vikings! Explore Scottish history in this lesson while learning about interesting facts and events.


One of Scotland's most famous stories is about the Loch Ness Monster. Have you heard of it? Legend says a huge dinosaur-like creature lives in Loch Ness, a large lake in Scotland. Although nobody has ever gotten a clear picture of the monster named Nessie, tourists still flock to the lake each year hoping to get a glimpse. Scotland is full of legend and tales, many of the stories based on its rich history.

Where Is Scotland?

If you've seen any of the Harry Potter movies, you've already experienced Scotland because many scenes from the movies were filmed there! Scotland is part of the United Kingdom and shares a border with England.

Map of Scotland

Ancient Scotland

Imagine exploring castles, stone monuments, hillside forts and battle sites. Many Scottish historical sites have been preserved for visitors. So let's journey back thousands of years to ancient Scotland!

Scotland was once covered with ice! After the ice melted, ancient people known as hunter-gatherers moved to Scotland around 6,000 B.C.

Thousands of years later, another group of Scottish people were known as 'Picts,' meaning painted people. Painting the body was a common practice among the Picts. The Picts were given their name by the Romans who tried to invade Scotland many times but were not successful.

In the early 500s, the Scots, a people from Ireland, invaded Scotland. Eventually the Picts and Scots merged into one kingdom. But the invasions weren't over! The Vikings, warriors from Scandinavia, came to Scotland. They eventually settled across western Scotland, including its islands.

The Middle Ages

What do you think happens when a king from one country decides he should rule over a neighboring country? Resistance! King Edward I of England claimed to be the ruler of Scotland in the late 1200s. This didn't go over well with Scottish people, who rebelled. Soon King Edward was invading Scotland, forcing Scottish nobles to help him. Led by William Wallace, the Scottish clans, or groups of families, fought back. A series of battles took place and finally in 1328, England recognized Scotland's independence. But this was not the end of Scotland and England's fighting.

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