50+ interactive sites for social studies
Karen Ogen gets the credit for creating an easy to use, visually appealing list of interactive sites aligned by content area. Larry Felazzo gets the credit for sharing Karen’s work. You get the credit for using the list with your kids.
Still not enough? Try some of these:
Start by heading over to view a few quick links to gaming research and some excellent game suggestions at my Social Studies Central site. Then browse through the list below for just the right activity:
1628: Across the Continent
Who was in North America in 1628? How far did European influence reach? Which American Indian tribes were powerful? The answers may surprise you!
Atlas of the Human Journey
A National Geographic interactive map of the genetic movement of humans over time
BBC History page
Some neat interactive games such as Viking Quest and Hunt the Ancestor. Click on the categories, most have interactive sims and games to the right
Explore these pages to learn all about the Colony, the project, the colonists, and life in the “New World” in 1628
Colonial Williamsburg for Kids
Flash interactive site that describes life in colonial Virginia / be sure to also check out A Day in the Life
A turn-based, multiplayer strategy game that takes place on a map of medieval Europe. Play on the web against as many as 16 human or AI opponents
Decisions in American History
Play a role in history. As a juror, senator, and U.S. president you will consider some of the most important decisions in our nation’s history
A generic list of a variety of available online
It’s 1629, and you have recently been appointed Governor of a New World colony on the wind-swept coast of the province of Mayne. You’re charged you with the tasks of selecting colonists and safely guiding them across the sea
Fantasy Music League
Your goal? Create a record label that, based on real world chart movements, generates the most income possible
Field Museum / Chicago
Online interactive activities including the story of chocolate, Egypt, Cleopatra problem solving and The Sue Files
Flight to Freedom
Slaves resisted. In nearly every conceivable way, they registered their protest against their enslavement. One of the most important ways they resisted was by running away
Vanquish foes! Slaughter enemies! Recruit and equip your armies! Conquer foreign lands! Tax citizens and provide municipal services! Oh, ok, you can skip the last part
On January 24, 1848 James Marshall discovered gold at Sutter’s Mill, touching off the California gold rush. Try your luck!
Go West with Lewis and Clark
Wild rivers. Rugged mountains. An unknown continent to explore. This great expedition will face them all and need your help on this incredible adventure!
HIP Pocket Change
A fun, educational tool that generates interest in coins, the US Mint and U.S. history
History Detective Kids!
Geared towards kids ages 8-12, The History Detective Kids Web site encourages critical thinking, inquiry, problem solving, dramatic play and fun through learning / based on the great PBS series
How would you like to become a great investigator — of history! I challenge you to solve the History Mystery! If you figure out the mystery in fewer clues, you earn a higher title as an investigator.
Immigrant Rights Through History
The United States of America was built by many generations of immigrants. What legal rights do you think America’s first immigrants had? Should a United States resident be denied citizenship under any circumstances?
Consider your favorite genre of fiction; Then think of the main character in that type of story. Now imagine that you have become that character
Hot Shot Business
Create a business, make money, learn econ stuff
LavaMind Economic Sims
These three sims look great! In Gazillionaire the player runs a trading company in outer space, Zapitalism is a business simulation where students runs a retail business on an imaginary island. In Profitania, the player manages and operates a factory in a subterranean world
Mapmaker! Mapmaker! Make Me a Map!
Imagine that you are a mapmaker for the king and queen of Spain. One day, one of your friends returns from his travels and asks you to make a map of his journey
On this site, you will launch a spacecraft to Mars, explore canyons, solve mysteries, and search for life. Use it to compare to early explorations on Earth!
Museum of Online Museums
You will find links to online collections and exhibits covering a vast array of interestsNapoleonic Wars Online
Napoleonic Wars OnLine is a multiplayer simulation of combat and diplomacy during the Wars of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars
National Budget Simulation
Students serve as an Economic Advisor to the President, who must increase military spending out of political necessity, but needs to reduce spending in other programs to limit the deficit
National Geographic / Remembering Pearl Harbor
Photos, footage, firsthand accounts, and narration bring the attack on Pearl Harbor in Oahu, Hawaii, to life—moment by moment, target by target
You create your own country, fashioned after your own political ideals, and care for its people. You can also join the U.N. and help solve international problems
Online games that offer a “good experience” – good game design with an overall attention to quality
Online Jamestown Adventure
You are the Captain of the Jamestown Colony: Can you do any better than the real colonists? You will have a copy of the London Company’s Instructions to help guide you
OOPS Virtual Field Trips
A virtual field trip is the next best thing to being there! Choose a destination below and click your trip into action
Rags to Riches
You just opened your first business, selling tee shirts online.
Re-Living the Wright Way
Lots of goodies that recreates and documents the work and flights of the Wright brothers
Be a patron of the arts. Design your own innovation. Investigate Renaissance artworks in depth. Discover how past innovations inform life today
Renaissance Florence: Time Machine Adventure
Your job? Stop the evil headmaster from kidnapping five of the greatest thinkers ever known!
In this simulation, kids participate in all the stages of an ancient Egyptian mummification, from removal of the organs to placing the mummy in the tomb
Tour the Town
An interactive tour of Colonial Williamsburg / explore the Historic Area and Colonial Williamsburg
Trades in Colonial Williamsburg
Experience life in early Williamsburg by viewing photos and descriptions of specific jobs
Created by National Geographic: You are a slave. Your body, your time, your very breath belong to a farmer in 1850s Maryland . . . but your soul lights up when you hear whispers of attempted escape. Freedom means a hard, dangerous trek. Do you try it?
Helps kids rescue others, provide food, help clean water, etc and learn about the world at the same time!
Travel back in time to the year 793 AD. Can you build a ship, cross the seas, loot a monastery and return home to claim your prize?
A neat interactive site that asks kids to solve problems and use primary sources
Welcome to Adventures at Dry Creek
An exciting adventure to learn about life in Montana 60-70 million years ago. You will receive help from mentors, use lots of tools, and keep track of your ideas in a notebook
Westward Ho! Travel West on the Wagon Train
Load those wagons . . . kiss the kin goodbye . . . get ready for adventure, drama, comedy, tragedy, and fantastic learning as we head out west!
Who Killed William Robinson?
A wonderful site that asks kids to solve the actual murder of an African American using primary source documents. Was an innocent man convicted / did the real killers escape? Racism, history and CSI all in one!
World War I: Over the Top
An interactive adventure game that allows YOU to experience life in the trenches during the First World War
You are the Historian!
Plimoth Plantation has put together this very cool historical investigation for elementary & MS kids
Xerxe’s March to Greece
You are Xerxes, King of the mighty Persian Empire, and you are about to embark on one of the greatest military campaigns in history