Download Our Free Book of Centuries Template
A Book of Centuries is like a timeline in a notebook. As its name suggests, each two-page spread in the book is devoted to one hundred years—a century—of history. Each student creates his or her own book, recording historical events and names of importance, along with pictures, poems, quotes, and anything else that makes the book individual. You can also add written narrations, illustrations from the Internet, or titles of books you’ve read that are set in that time period.
If your children are not yet old enough to take on the responsibility of their own Books of Centuries, you can create one together as a family.
A Book of Centuries can be as simple or elaborate as you like. If you want a simple one, download this Basic Book of Centuries document that labels each two-page spread with a date (in hundred-year increments) from 4000 B.C. to A.D. 2100. For a more deluxe version, see My Book of Centuries in our bookstore.
Putting Your Book of Centuries Together
- Once you download and print the Book of Centuries file, sort the pages into two identical piles, with the same dates opposite each other.
- Three-hole punch one pile of copies on the right side of the paper and the other pile, on the left side. Now you should have each of the two pages with identical dates laying beside each other, holes facing each other on the inside edges of the pages.
- Put the pages in chronological order into a three-ring notebook. The first two pages in the notebook should be 4000–3901 B.C. and the last two pages should be A.D. 2001–2100. (Remember that the B.C. dates count backward and the A.D. dates count forward. So your book should start with 4000 B.C., 3900 B.C., 3800 B.C., etc. Once you get to 100–1 B.C., start counting forward again with A.D. 1–100, A.D. 101–200, A.D. 201–300, up to A.D. 2001–2100.)
That’s it! Make a cover for your Book of Centuries if you want to, then just start making entries as you study different time periods, people, and events. If you would like more ideas, check out our article on How to Use a Book of Centuries.
Here is a short video of Sonya Shafer explaining the basics of keeping a Book of Centuries.