Castles and Knights: The Legend of King Arthur

Fatima and Harry find out about the difference between 'fact' and 'fiction' and that not all stories from the past are true.

The Legend of King Arthur

In this animation Fatima and Harry learn about the difference between 'fact' and 'fiction' - thus the difference between history and myth.

Pupils may have encountered knights in fairy tales and myths and this video begins to unpick the difference between the fictional depictions and ‘real’ history.

The animation starts with Sally, the museum guide, using the example of dragons and dinosaurs to explain the difference to the two children: we know dinosaurs are real because we have the physical evidence - fossils - to prove they existed.

Sally then introduces Fatima and Harry to some of the best-known stories from the myth of King Arthur.


Teacher's Notes
Which of these is real? How do we know?
Arthur pulls the sword from the stone
Label a knight on horseback

Teacher's Notes

Before the video

The teacher could use the ‘Telephone Game’ to demonstrate to pupils how things can get ‘distorted’ as they are passed down through the generations.

The teacher could whisper a sentence into the ear of one pupil who then passes this on to the next.

The class can then compare the sentence at the end of the chain compared with how it started!

The teacher could use this as the starting point for a discussion - why do some things which didn’t happen become stories?

This links to the NC objective of participating in 'discussions...and debates'.

The teacher could then move on to asking pupils if they have ever heard of the stories of King Arthur?

During the video

The teacher can pause and ask questions, or the teacher could use the snippets of the King Arthur myths as a teaser for reading.

After the Video

The teacher could use this video to do a ‘detective’ lesson: how can pupils gather evidence to find out if something really happened?

This can be based on something in the modern world but will help to develop their historical skills of understanding and evaluating evidence.

This could also be quite an active task pupils could literally be sent to hunt to find clues of an event happening!

The video could also be used as a good stimulus for reading some of the King Arthur myths.

Curriculum Notes

This film is relevant for teaching History at KS1 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and 1st Level in Scotland.

More from this series

Famous Sieges
The Real Life of a Knight
William the Conqueror

See also...

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight