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Resources for Parents and Kids: Scandinavia

Viking man and woman

 

How much do you know about the Vikings? These infamous raiders were perhaps some of the most feared people of their time. But is there more to their story? In our latest issue, Issue 22 | Northern Voyage, we explored the fascinating history of Scandinavia and its Viking Age. As always, we wanted to share some of our favorite resources to encourage our young historians to keep on learning. 




Researchers and Aspiring Academics


Vikings have captivated historians for decades, and thankfully there is a lot of research to choose from. Here are some texts we found helpful while creating our latest issue. 


The Oxford Illustrated History of the Vikings edited by Peter Sawyer: Written by twelve leading scholars, this book is a great starting point for your academic research. Filled with illustrations, the text dives into the latest research and archaeological evidence to uncover the fascinating history and legacy of the Vikings.


The Varangians of Byzantium: An Aspect of Byzantine Military History by Sigfús Blöndal: In Issue 22, we explored the legendary Varangian guard who served in the Byzantine military. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the topic and is one of the first complete studies on the Norsemen who fought for Emperor Basil II. 


Valkyrie: The Women of the Viking World by Jóhanna Katrín Friðriksdóttir: Did you enjoy learning about Viking women in Issue 22? Here’s our book recommendation if you’d like to learn more about these fearless explorers. In this text, author Jóhanna Katrín Friðriksdóttir explores women’s diverse experiences during the Viking Age, from warriors and chieftains to scholars and poets. 

Norsemen invading England
Depiction of Norsemen invading England
from 12th-century Miscellany on the Life of St. Edmund, 
Pierpont Morgan Library. 


 

Parents and Educators


Pair these free resources with our educational magazine or add them to your classroom curriculum.


DK Find Out: DK provides a number of interactive webpages to explore. Examine a longship or learn about Viking explorations with this map. With over fifteen different topics to browse, kids can use this resource to dive deeper into Norse culture and history. 


York Archaeology: This website offers a great collection of learning resources, including a range of printable activities. Color in different Viking art with their free coloring sheets, or use this printout to make your own Viking name. For any of our UK readers, York Archaeology also provides loan boxes filled with Viking artifact replicas for some hands-on history.


Museum of the Viking Age, University of Oslo: This museum based in Norway offers a number of digital experiences that are easy to explore at home or in the classroom. Here’s our favorite: take a 360° virtual tour of the Viking Ship Museum to learn more about the famous Oseberg ship.

 

Oseberg Ship
Oseberg ship in the Viking Ship Museum/Museum of the Viking Age



Young Historians


Transport back in time to the Viking Age with these engaging kids books.


Guts and Glory: Vikings by Ben Thompson: This exciting history book will give kids a humorous and intriguing overview of Viking history. We love that it’s filled with obscure facts that young historians will want to share with friends and family. The author also provides a list of sources so kids can conduct their own research. 


Norse Mythology for Kids: Tales of Gods, Creatures, and Quests by Mathias Nordvig: The stories of Iceland, Norway, and Denmark are colorfully illustrated in this children’s book. With a collection of 20 different myths, kids can begin their journey into Nordic folklore to uncover the different beasts, gods, and goddesses of the Vikings. As they read, they will also learn some Nordic terms too! It is an excellent introduction to the fascinating world of Norse mythology.  

Norse mythology

 

Viking Invasion (I Was There) by Stuart Hill: Want to know what a Viking invasion was like? Here’s what we know: it was pretty scary! Kids will enjoy this first-person adventure about a boy who helps defend his village from a Viking attack. It’s an engaging read for kids ages 7+ and will help immerse them in the world of Vikings.


Riddle of the Runes by Dr. Janina Ramirez: Written by BBC historian Dr. Janina Ramirez, this thrilling mystery is filled with historical details that will help bring the Vikings to life. Kids ages 9+ can follow the fictional adventures of Alva, a young investigator, as she uncovers the clues hiding in her town. 

Riddle of the Runes

 

If you want to learn more about the Vikings or the history of Scandinavia, we hope you’ll check out our kids magazine Issue 22 | Northern Voyage. Stay tuned as we continue to share research tips and resources for future issues!