One of the great challenges of teaching KS1 history is to avoid the pitfall of turning history into just stories from the past. Of course we want our youngest children to enjoy and remember the stories, but there is evidence that they can do so much more. One great activity I am very keen on is to ask how well a short video explains why a famous person is remembered. Clearly pupils could simply watch the film and respond to questions. Even better if we show a film they haven’t seen, at the end of the topic and ask how well does the film explain why Florence Nightingale is still remembered today. Start by asking the children to speculate as to what the film MIGHT contain. They could make a list. This then leads to more active watching, whereby pupils simply cross or tick items on their list adding anything they had left out. When the film is over pupils can then move into evaluative mode. What did it explain well? What did it leave out? What would you have included? They could even write a letter to the film producer saying what they thought of the film.
Finding a film that is not too detailed, too long or too all-encompassing is often hard. I have done the spade-work for you with this 2 minute example. Enjoy!