Kingfisher History Encyclopedia

Kingfisher History Encyclopedia

# 003618

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Item #: 003618
ISBN: 9780753477694
Grades: 4-10

Product Description:

This encyclopedia is the Revised 6th Edition for 2022. We looked at several different alternatives before selecting this volume as a basic world history reference book. As with any secular product, we contend with the "dating" problems (the book dates the beginning of human history at 40,000 B.C.). The theory of evolution is assumed as factual, so this resource includes only evolutionary dating references. The book, however, is still an excellent reference tool with many outstanding features:

  • It's all in one book (491 pgs) making it a handy reference for any and all time periods.
  • The paper is nice and thick, so it can tolerate years of "wear and tear".
  • Chronologically-arranged and cross-referenced articles are featured within each time period.
  • Includes over 2000 colorful illustrations, including photographs and charts as well as annotated maps. A timeline also runs across the top of each page.
  • A handy reference section at the back of the book has lists of national leaders throughout history; wars; and explorations/discoveries.
  • The comprehensive indexing makes it easy to quickly find the information or related articles you need.
  • This 6th edition is both fully revised and updated. It includes a new chapter on the modern world that covers topics such as population, climate crisis, environmental threats, the global economy, war and terror, politics and protest, equality, migrants and refugees, medical challenges, COVID-19, Space, Science and technology, and art and architecture.

This book replaced the old Kingfisher Illustrated History of the World a number of years ago. Although similar, there are some differences in this new book. Curriculums that refer to the original book may not correspond exactly to the replacement version. We think this will be a volume you will use again and again, not just for world history studies, but for unit studies of all kinds.

Publisher Description:

History leaps from the page in this completely revised and updated edition of the critically acclaimed Kingfisher History Encyclopedia. From humankind's earliest history right through to the technological and social revolutions of the current day—including the fight for equality, the threat of climate change, the COVID-19 crisis, and the latest space exploration—this trusted reference provides a one-stop source for research, and is the perfect companion to any study of world history. The encyclopedia is organized chronologically and then thematically within each time period. A timeline runs across the top of each page for context.

Each section includes biographies of important people and key features on the art, architecture, and technology of the period. No more hunting and pecking all over the internet for incomplete or un-vetted information. With 3,500 indexed references and more than 2,000 full-color illustrations, photographs, and source materials, as well as research-friendly back matter and index, this encyclopedia provides a beautiful, authoritative reference that is essential for any home, school, or library.

Category Description for Biblioplan for Families:

The name BiblioPlan is synonymous with classical chronological world history but through years of tweaking and improving, what is available now is a full-bodied, full-color curriculum rather than a mere lesson-plan framework (its original format). Comprehensive and thorough while providing ease of use and minimum teacher prep, BiblioPlan allows students of all ages to work on the same time periods at the same time at their own level. There is flexibility. You can still use just the framework (Family Guide) or you can add some or all of the components. You can take a general approach and incorporate multiple ages at once or you can use material that targets particular grade levels. Older children can help younger children and children of all ages will be making memories as they work together. Biblioplan puts you in the driver's seat with full controls.

BiblioPlan Family Guides

provide the structural framework for the program - a full year's worth of history and literature readings and the Family Guide is necessary for either approach. There are four Guides, one for each of the four classical (chronological) time periods Ancient, Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern. This is the core of the whole program (and once WAS the whole program). Designed by a group of homeschooling moms, these Guides provide 34 weekly spreadsheets; each a comprehensive lesson plan and annotated reading lists for each grade level. With a goal of integrating quality historical literature with biblical and secular history, these moms put together an easy-to-follow plan covering the historical topic (Classtime), a Psalm study, References and Resources for textual information about the topic, Literature Selections of the Week (for grades K-2, 3+, 5+ and 8+), a Family Read Aloud suggestion, Writing Ideas, Optional Fiction & free online resources, movies, and suggested Activities. Introductory information in each Guide includes the usual "how to find books" and "how to use the plan" information as well as the book lists for both the scheduled and the optional literature.

If it sounds like the Family Guides might be all you need you would be correct. They're comprehensive and thorough; well-constructed plans. You could complete four years (plus four more if you wanted) of interesting history, absorbing literature, and engaging activity possibilities using just these Guides. If you go this route, you will need to use the frequently-referenced "spine resources." These include Story of the World, Mystery of History, The Kingfisher History Encyclopedia, The Usborne Encyclopedia of World History, or History of US and a number of others.

However, there is an alternative route. If you like to have perfectly coordinated, quality material at your fingertips rather than scrambling for it then you can incorporate one or more of the following BiblioPlan text components to use alongside the Family Guide.

BiblioPlan Text Components: Remember the Days, Consider the Years and Companions

  • Remember the Days - textbooks written specifically for Grades K-6 are available for Ancient, Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern.
  • Consider the Years - textbook written specifically for Grades 7-12 is available for Ancient. It is a reworking of the older Companions and part of the 2nd edition material now available for Ancient.
  • Companions are currently available for Medieval (two-book set), Early Modern (two-book set), and Modern. These are 1st edition texts and are being replaced with the Consider the Year text. For Ancients the Companions are only compatible with the 2012 edition of Cool History.

With options for each time period, these are full-color historical textbooks that provide textual information (world history, U.S. history, church history, and geography) in a narrative prose style interspersed with all sorts of intriguing factual and cultural anecdotes. They are color-coordinated so you know instantly if you're reading history text (black & white) or about people and special events or biblical quotes (various colored backgrounds). These are books which beg to be pored over. As an example, in random pages from the Medieval Companion, there is a section on Muslim food laws and their rituals for newborns, a description of a tughra (Ottoman sultans signature) with gorgeous, artistic examples and a Turkish paper decorating technique ebru. In the Giants of the Faith section is a biographical sketch of Saint George and the Dragon which continues onto the next page and includes a large, glorious artwork reproduction of the same.

There is a pattern to the information provided for each chapter (each time period book has 34 chapters - one for each week): Geography Focus, History Focus, Fascinating Facts, Mystifying Myths, Interesting Individuals, Fascinating Foods, Church History Focus, Critical Concepts, and Giants of the Faith. Just in case there's any doubt, Remember the Days, Consider the Years, and the Companions as well as all the BiblioPlan materials have a consistent biblical and Christian worldview. These books provide all the necessary textual information for Classtime and greatly reduce, or even eliminate, the need for any outside historical reference books or spines. That being said, some may still choose to use the suggested spine readings in order to provide even more historical perspective and textual information.

BiblioPlan Cool History

provides weekly assignment sheets at four different grade level groupings:

  • Littles (K-2)
  • Middles (2-6)
  • Upper Middles (6-8)
  • Advanced (8-12)

It's pretty easy to surmise that the goal of these is to allow a family to challengingly study the same time period and the same topics but at their own distinct levels. This is where you find your students’ work and in upper levels their assessments also. There are subtle grade-appropriate variations in the levels but these pages include reading assignments and questions taken from the Remember the Days, Consider the Years, and Companion readings.

  • The Littles book in the older edition (Medieval, Early Modern, Modern) has suggested reading assignments and questions from Remember the Days; in the 2nd edition (Ancients) these reading assignments are found in the Family Guide. Also included are fun hands-on activities and Globe Fun (introductory map activities). The “Giants of the Faith” section provides biblical figures associated with the times and places of study. These are consumable, colored workbooks.
  • The Middles book has questions from the readings and Giants of the Faith suggestions and adds Challenge Questions plus an Optional Bonus Question or Activity. These are consumable, colored workbooks.
  • Upper Middles has Questions from the readings, Challenge Questions, Optional Bonus Question or Activity and includes periodic (about every six weeks) exams. These are consumable, colored workbooks.
  • Advanced assignment sheets have assorted questions (fill in the blank, short answers, short essays) all taken from Consider the Years or the Companions as well as research essays (outside of the text readings). Also included are periodic (about every six weeks) exams. These are consumable, black and white workbooks.

BiblioPlan Hands On Maps

provides one or two full-color maps each week that correspond to the week's lesson content. Instructions for the maps are printed directly on the map. While students may need to gather a little helpful information from a world map and/or Remember the Days, Consider the Years, or the Companions, students will be able to complete the maps at their level more-or-less on their own. The same set of maps is included in both books

  • The Middles maps set has suggestions for K-2, 3+, and 5+ students. These maps includes some prompts and partial information that makes them easier to complete. These maps and activities correlate with the Remember the Days as well as the Companion text for the K-8 grade material.
  • The Advanced maps set includes a geography scope and sequence as well as a Challenge activity for each of the maps. Six exams for this level are included in the Answer Key pdf. These maps and activities correlate only with the Consider the Years text for Ancients and the Companion for Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern.

PDF Exams and Answer Keys

If you're concerned about answers to all the Cool History questions or the exams, they do exist but they aren't in the Cool History books. An Answer Key pdf is sent from our office via email after your order has been processed. For Upper Middles and Advanced Ancients, blank Exams and Exam Answers are emailed after purchase. For Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern blank exams and answers are found within the large Answer Key pdf that is sent.

The Maps Answer Key pdf is sent from our office via email as well after your order has been processed. Ancients, once again, has a separate pdf while Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern maps answers are found in the larger Cool History Answer Key pdf that is sent.

BiblioPlan Timelines & Figures

are well-crafted supplements with one distinct advantage over many other timelines - they're in color! The spiral-bound books can be used "as is" or the pages removed and the timeline mounted on a wall or the pages three-hole punched and the timeline placed into a binder which would allow your student to create an entire timeline in one place. Lots of flexibility here. The timeline consists of one or more colored strips (color varies with the time period) plus dated notes on particular events. The student cuts out the graphics and pictures (located in the back of the book) and inserts them in the appropriate place.

  • The Ancient Timeline includes two timelines: one for Biblical history and one for world history. The timeline is set-up as facing page timelines. Biblical history on one side and World History on the facing page.
  • The Medieval, Renaissance and Reformation Timeline includes two timelines one for church history and one for "regular" history. The timeline is set-up as facing page timelines. Medieval on one side and Church History on the facing page.
  • The Early America and the World Timeline and the Modern America and the World Timeline each feature facing pages; one for the Americas and one for the World.

As mentioned earlier, the Timeline Figures are mostly in color (some 19th and 20th century figures are prints of original black and white photos) and are eye-catching. Figures include portraits, artifacts, geographical features, monuments and buildings, photos or drawings of events, and much more.

BiblioPlan Craft Books

provide over two hundred activities that correlate with the Family Guides. These are cultural crafts, food, and fun referenced in the Cool History assignment sheets (three to five per week). The books are impressive - a well-illustrated, well-explained variety of crafts and projects. A few require materials from other sources but most include directions and full-color pictures. Here's a random selection from one book: Porcelain Painting (buy a kit), Hold a Japanese Tea Ceremony (get details from internet), Make a Kharbhooja Sharbat Drink (directions), Make a Flying Dragon Head (directions), Make a Chinese Dragon (directions), Make a Yurt (directions), Make a Chinese Cricket Cage (directions). Patterns, where needed, are provided in the back of the book. This book is fully integrated with the BiblioPlan program but could also be used as a supplement to another world history study.

The BiblioPlan Coloring Books

provide coloring sheets to accompany the lessons. These are referenced in the Family Guides. Utilizing the talents of present and former homeschooled students, multiple artists have produced a variety of styles and details in the drawings making them suitable for younger and older students. There is at least two and often three pages per week. Reproducible for families.

The BiblioPlan Family Discussion Guide

is for families who want some help in broadening their history studies into thoughtful family discussions. These Guides provide discussion starters that will help you guide your students into a better understanding of the connections between secular history and their Christian faith. One of the advantages of the Discussion Guide is that they allow you to lead discussions without having to study everything in the text books yourself.

The new edition (available for Ancients) has received a major facelift and shift in scope and sequence. Detailed out with Grammar, Logic, and Rhetoric questions for each appropriate age level, there are also geography and general review questions for each week of study. Consider the Years specific questions are clearly identified.

BiblioPlan Cool History Classic

is a republished version of an older edition of the Cool History books. In this version (no grade level grouping designations), questions are based on the textual content of Susan Wise Bauer's Story of the World rather than on the BiblioPlan Texts. This provides student work (no test or assessments), for all grade levels, if you choose the BiblioPlan path of using just the Family Guide and Story of The World approach.

BiblioPlan Hands-On Notebooking

These are only found as digital eBook purchases from the publisher. offers digital notebooking options to add to your studies and are geared to grade levels. Giants of the Faith adds Bible characters’ study and composition writing to their work. There is a Giants of the Faith notebook for each year. Countries of the World has a different country focus for each year of study. The U.S. States and Presidents is for year three and four studies and breaks the presidents into their appropriate era of service.

In conclusion, if your whole family is ready to dig into world history and you want a Christian perspective that provides flexibility, an excellent road map, comprehensive textual information, and colorful, engaging reinforcement and enrichment possibilities, then look no further than the new, reconstructed BiblioPlan. ~ Janice & Rebecca

Primary Subject
Grade Start
Grade End
Miranda Smith
Softcover Book
Brand Name
Larousse, Kingfisher
4.9 (lbs.)
11.12" x 8.38" x 1.38"
Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
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Why did you choose this?
Rainbow Resource Center Store
It's recommended with the Story of the World texts
Amy B on Feb 12, 2022
This book was recommended by a Rainbow Resource consultant as a supplemental source for the Story of the World series. My son loves reading facts and reading in general. I know he will love going through this entire book on his own time too.
Chiaen S on Aug 20, 2021
It's recommended with the Story of the World texts
Amy B on Feb 12, 2022
To use with History Odyssey's Modern Times.
Holly on Oct 16, 2021
This book was recommended by a Rainbow Resource consultant as a supplemental source for the Story of the World series. My son loves reading facts and reading in general. I know he will love going through this entire book on his own time too.
Chiaen S on Aug 20, 2021
I needed a second history reference and this one was recommended. I understand that it includes a lot of evolution of man in the beginning. I think kids need to know the information, so I'm glad to be able to talk about it and explain the weaknesses in the theory.
Nikki on Aug 13, 2021
Story of the World Curriculum Volume 1
Christina D on Aug 12, 2021
We're using Curiosity Chronicles for our 3rd grader's ancient history this year, and this is one of the suggested supplemental resources. Borrowed from the library first and I love it, so we're buying!
Felicia T on Jul 15, 2021
birthday present for my 4 year old
James S on Jun 7, 2021
I needed this to go along with Story Of The World books.
Amiee H on Jan 24, 2021
Recommended by our history curriculum - History Odyssey
Meredith B on Jan 20, 2021
honestly my kids just LOVE leafing through this stuff, so instead of borrowing it from the library, i just bought it! i think it'll make a great addition to our curriculum!
natalie s on Jan 11, 2021
This compliments nicely with the Story Of The World: Ancient Times
Stephanie S on Aug 10, 2020
Best price around!
Taylor L on Aug 10, 2020
Companion to History Odyssey Level Two: The Ancients
Crystal M on Jul 23, 2020
More pictures to go with Story of the World.
Jessica M on Oct 2, 2019
for fifth grader history
Lois A on Jul 13, 2019
great book for history
Aasiya I on Sep 24, 2018
Required, but looks great!
Jeremy H on Sep 23, 2018
To go along with Story of The World with my first grade daughter.
Sheena H on Sep 18, 2018
This book looks like it will be a perfect compliment to Story of the World, and the consultant at Rainbow said it's a beautiful book, too!
Anne L on Aug 27, 2018
required for class
Tricia S on Aug 16, 2018
Required for our students private school class.
Penny J on Aug 8, 2018
it is recommended by the website.
Emily S on Jul 19, 2018
stocking up on resources for beginning history as a family next year
Brandy on Apr 25, 2018
It was recommended by a friend
User on Mar 28, 2018
This will be used in our Grammar and Logic Stages of study along with the Well Trained Mind's recommendations. After reviewing usage of this and others, I decided this would cover more ages and has come highly recommended by numerous other sources.
Erin M on Feb 11, 2018
To go with The Story of the World.
Eva C on Dec 23, 2017
"Needed it for my history curriculum"
Mijanou S. on Oct 30, 2017
I need this book for History Odyssey Level 2 Ancients. It is cheaper from here than from Amazon!
Melody C on Aug 21, 2017
for more in-depth history lessons
User on Aug 18, 2017
I am creating our own World History course for the next few years, and this will serve as a reference/timeline point. I chose this over the Usborne because it has a running timeline across the top of every page and spends more time on each subject with less visual busyness. NOTE: Google Books has previews of this and other books to help you decide what to buy.
User on Aug 14, 2017
"Needed it for my kids online homeschool class."
Kristie G on Aug 10, 2017
home school co op
Sheri M on Jul 24, 2017
To go along with our Story of the World curriculum.
Allison F on May 28, 2017
Resource for our history.
Kerry J on Mar 27, 2017
Needed for History Odyssey
Jennifer G on Jan 20, 2017
We love to read more about the people we study in history lessons.
Melanie M on Dec 18, 2016
history spine
User on Oct 24, 2016
This is a supplement for SOTW.
Holly M on Sep 28, 2016
It is used as reference for The Story of the World.
Mary D on Sep 7, 2016
I chose this to be a supplement to our history lessons. We use Story of the World curriculum and this was recommended in that book.
Lindsey C on Sep 5, 2016
This was recommended by Susan Wise Bauer as a supplement for Story of the World which we use.
Madelyn W on Aug 19, 2016
Recommended by a friend!
Heather L on Aug 17, 2016
Love this book. I sold my older copy thinking we would use other book sources, and here I am re-purchasing because nothing provides a better background look than Kingfisher. Plus, the objects they choose to display make my kids wonder and ask more questions. Curiosity is a great tool for attention!
Donna A on Aug 9, 2016
for Classical Educational style middle school World History class
Geralyn D on Aug 1, 2016
We are using The Well-Trained Mind as a guide and this was one of the history texts that was suggested to be used in conjunction w/ SOTW.
Jenni L on Jul 5, 2016
Using this with the Story of the World curriculum.
Bertel S on Jun 4, 2016
We need it for History Odyssey
Jennifer R on Jun 3, 2016
Needed for History Odyssey
Kari E on May 10, 2016
This was a recommended resource in The Story of the World.
User on May 6, 2016
It was a needed resource for our History Odyssey curriculum.
Kim L on May 4, 2016
To use with History Odyssey's Modern Times.
Holly on Oct 16, 2021
I needed a second history reference and this one was recommended. I understand that it includes a lot of evolution of man in the beginning. I think kids need to know the information, so I'm glad to be able to talk about it and explain the weaknesses in the theory.
Nikki on Aug 13, 2021
When will this be back in stock? People are selling used copies on eBay for $100, so I want to avoid if possible. .
Johanna Y on Oct 27, 2020
BEST ANSWER: The publisher is in the process of reprinting this book and has just recently let us know that we can expect them mid-November (2020). We are rejoicing!
What is the difference between this and Kingfisher History Atlas?
T I on Sep 14, 2020
BEST ANSWER: I only own the History Encylopedia. I looked at the atlas on Amazon. What I'm seeing is a lot of similar information but the atlas is possibly less detail, but it is overlaid on a map. Also, the timeline for the encyclopedia is across the top of the pages, for the atlas it appears to be along the side. The map overlay would be a nice feature because finding historical outline maps has proven one of my greatest challenges and I have moved to free-drawing them. I've also considered asking them to make maps with legos... frankly, there is just too much to get through in a day and they are not really interested enough to complete that task. Perhaps if the information were atop a map, it would stick without the additional geography lesson.
What are the differences between the third edition and previous editions? How has it been revised?
Ashley on Jul 18, 2020
BEST ANSWER: I don't have any of the older editions. The copyright says 2004 and the newest entry is 2001 and the "the war on terror." It has a seal on the front that says "3rd edition, update and revised" as shown in the image. The inside cover and back page do not specify what these changes are.

I don't know what ages you are teaching. I will use this for some reference, along with Usborne History of the World. But the real heart of my history teaching (Gr. 5 & 8) I am choosing to get from more complete sources: Seven Story Press (diverse histories), movies, literature. We are reading "Story of Mankind" and then these dictionaries are essential to kind of give us a framework to help us understand and visualize exactly when and where he's talking about. It's so hard. It's such a huge, HUGE, amount of information. How do you choose what's important and what's not and to whom? Good luck!!
Does the new updated version use the dating B.C. And A.D.?
User on Jun 5, 2020
BEST ANSWER: Hello, I have the third edition, stated to have been updated in 2016; however, it still uses the outdated notation of B.C. and A.D.
Can you please tell me what year this was revised?
Kari E on May 10, 2016
BEST ANSWER: I bought mine in August, doesn't use the word revised. It says "this updated edition published in 2012". Hope that helps!
Is this a hardcover book?
A shopper on Feb 13, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Yes it is hardcover. My daughters (ages 4 and 8) refer to it often. We have used it in addition to The Story of the World.
5.0 / 5.0
6 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
Rated 5 out of 5
Great book!
September 9, 2021
1 year ago
Rated 5 out of 5
Never disappointed
You can't go wrong with anything by Kingfisher! Each page packs a punch without overwhming young readers with too many dates and facts. But there's still so much learning to be had. We really like all the pictures and the quality of the pages of the book!
March 21, 2020
over 3 years ago
Rated 5 out of 5
Outstanding resource for teaching real history
We are really enjoying this book. Unschooling at home is our goal. Teaching our kids real history is a huge part of that. This is a comprehensive resource that will get us through many grades. Well worth it!
October 24, 2018
over 4 years ago
Rated 5 out of 5
helpful in teaching world history
This is a beautifully illustrated resource for middle school world history. We love it and look forward to using it this year.
September 1, 2016
over 6 years ago
Rated 5 out of 5
Kids love this series
This is our fourth Kingfisher book. 11 and 9 year old boys love them all.
July 14, 2016
over 6 years ago
Rated 5 out of 5
This is a wonderful book I majored in history at college and I've referred to this book again and again over the years I even designed a world history unit study for my children using this as a resource which they enjoyed more than traditional textbooks It works for K-8 and as a supplement for high school The contents are in chronological order (very helpful for history) and it is easy to find information on the major civilizations
August 27, 2008

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