Today in History

A quick starter for teaching New Zealand History: Today in History.

Every day the home page of NZHistory features historical events from New Zealand’s past that occurred on that date. Today in History reveals the milestones, innovations, catastrophes, victories and quirky facts and people behind the dates. There are stories that united us, whether in triumph or grief, and divided us, from the invasion of the Waikato in 1863 to the upheaval of the 1981 Springbok tour.

By following the links provided, teachers and students can explore that day’s story in as much (or as little) detail as they want. From the entry page for each event a drop-down menu allows you to choose any day or month of the year. A monthly Calendar view is also available.

Today in History could be incorporated into your teaching practice as:

  • An introduction or starter to your lesson or day.
  • Support for units of work you are currently teaching.
  • The basis of a small inquiry topic: e.g., members of your class could research the topic or person associated with their birthday; alternatively, dates could be allocated to the class at random. Students could then make some form of presentation to their classmates or display their findings on a virtual/real noticeboard devoted to ‘Today in History’.
  • As a springboard into a wider study: e.g., 25 April could be used to help launch an in-depth study of the Anzac story, Gallipoli, New Zealand in the First World War, or the role of war in shaping national identity.
How to cite this page

'Today in History', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 27-Jul-2021

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