American History Games & Activities
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American History Games: General Topics
GENERAL AMERICAN HISTORY
Great way for kids to learn American History with this computer game:
American History Lux
Comes in 4 difficuly levels.
The Library of Congress offers interactive activities on Amazing Americans, Jump Back in Time, Explore the States, Join America at Play, and See, Hear and Sing.
Play Who Is That? and guess the correct president. Another game at a different site, Name That President, has you identify the presidents by their picture.
Watch videos and play games at the White House site for kids!
This site lists fun secrets about each president. Just click on their picture!
Learn about US Presidents and other trivia in this Presidential Turkeys Game.
Just for fun! Watch the Presidents dance and learn from the song's lyrics!
This site features over 40 movies on Presidents to choose from, including the Academy Award-winning documentary on John F. Kennedy.
Watch from a selection of movies on leaders and events in African-American History.
STATES & CAPITALS
Take this online quiz on state abbreviations, capitals, and locations. Or click here for a game where you identify the highlighted state.
NEW WORLD EXPLORERS
Hernando De Soto explored Florida in 1539 and claimed it for Spain. The University of South Florida has several short movies (2-3 minutes each) online documenting this progression of events, and you can watch them here.
Also available for download is a DeSoto Activity Book from the DeSoto National Memorial Park. Some of the activities might be park-specific, but the majority of it is full of fun, well-illustrated, engaging activities for learning the history of DeSoto's exploration and discovery.
Play Native American games and make Native American crafts interactively!
Watch your choice of several movies on Native Americans, with themes from the Buffalo Dance to Bison to Wounded Knee.
Try the Jamestown Online Adventure and see how well you would do as an early colonist!
Click here for another excellent interactive game based on Jamestown!
Go on an interactive journey to Jamestown and see if you could have survived!
You are the archeologist, and can practice with the interactive artifact module or the buildings module at the Jamestowne dig. For Upper Elementary and older.
What a fun way to learn! Go On the Trail with Captain John Smith, and watch movies and play mini-games on this interactive adventure!
Pocahontas, Princess of the Powhatan is a computer game that lets you follow Pocahontas in her life both in the New World and then to London.
PILGRIMS & THANKSGIVING
Take the journey on the Mayflower, tour the ship, or experience the first Thanksgiving at this site from Scholastic!
Investigate the first Thanksgiving with 3 different virtual tours: a Pilgrim village, a Wampanoag homesite, and Plimoth plantation.
This site has no games or activities, but is included here because it is unique! Here you can find a list and accompanying biographies of all the signers of the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution. It also includes biographies of their wives.
Find out fun facts about the founding fathers by playing Who Wants to Marry a Founding Father (or Mother).
Ben Franklin -- Choose from a variety of games at this marvelous site, The Electric Franklin.
George Washington -- Take a virtual tour of George Washington's mansion, Mt. Vernon.
Follow the clues to uncover the missing pieces from George Washington's famous portrait.
The Mt. Vernon Ladies Association provides several interactive games to learn more about George Washington!
Thomas Jefferson -- Enjoy a virtual tour of Thomas Jefferson's Monticello.
Check your local PBS station for Liberty's Kids, a cartoon-style program geared for kids on the events surrounding the War for Independence. The website has corresponding fun and games.
In 1773, 342 crates of British tea were dumped in the Boston Harbor. Find out why in this Boston Tea Party activity!
Explore the American Revolution in depth with interactive resources and games from BBC.
Mission US has several interactive adventure games based on the Revolutionary War for grades 5 - 8. Better still, the games are meant for a learning experience, and the site includes downloadable teacher materials to go along with them!
Watch from a selection of mini-movies on the Revolutionary War. Themes include Muskets, Americans in 1776, the Revolutionary War soldier, and many more.
Choose to be either the British or the Colonials and try to take over the 13 colonies in this Revolutionary War game, The Flames of Rebellion.
Explore the Bill of Rights with the game called "Do I Have a Right?"
Play games, watch videos, or learn a song about the Bill of Rights, provided by the Bill of Rights Association.
George Washington influenced the building of several frigates, including the U.S.S. Constitution. This resulted in the founding of the American Navy. This website is geared for teachers, and is full of activities for all grade levels, and also includes a video to watch.
Lots of fun activites wait for you at this site done by Colonial Williamsburg.
Watch films on the lives of founding fathers and other early American themes!
Explore colonial life with a cast of kids at this site, called Colonial Days.
You can Be The Historian and investigate what life was like for a family living in Delaware c. 1780-1800 based on artifacts they left behind.
Learn about early American life, from clothes to tools to manuscripts and more!
Choose from several mini-movies to watch on Colonial America. Themes include the Pilgrims, Jamestown, the colonial economy, Williamsburg, and more.
Explore a New York village in 1845 and see a Harvest of History explaining how food was produced then vs. now.
FRENCH & INDIAN WAR
Explore the war from all perspectives in 1759: From the Warpath to the Plains of Abraham created by the Virtual Museum of Canada.
WAR OF 1812
"The fate of Baltimore--and perhaps the United States--hinges on your actions." These are the opening words of the game Hold The Fort, a game of survival, strategy, and nerve in the War of 1812.
Watch the online video from All Hands on Deck about "Old Ironsides."
A Sailor's Life For Me lets you explore Old Ironsides, Meet Your Shipmates, and Sail to Victory! Great games for learning about sailing in general, and the USS Constitution in particular.
Watch from several movie selections on the War of 1812, the almost-forgotten war with Britain that inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner."
LEWIS AND CLARK
PBS has several activities on Lewis and Clark at their site.
Go west across America on an interactive adventure with Lewis & Clark.
GOING WEST & FRONTIER LIVING
Build a Sod House online!
Explore the frontier life of Laura Ingalls Wilder with fun games and activities at this site.
This site features a large selection of movies on the frontier, westward expansion, and the pioneers to shed some light on what it took to forge ahead and claim new land during that time period.
Keep an expedition journal as a frontier explorer, with drawings and paintings to illustrate, compliments of the National Museum of Wildlife Art.
Go West, Young Artist is an interactive journey back in time. Learn history, American landscape, and art all at the same time!
Westward is a computer game where you control the fortunes of 3 vastly different towns. You must build your towns and make them thrive and grow! Sequel games are Westward II: Heroes of the Frontier, Westward III: Gold Rush, and Westward IV: All Aboard.
Your challenge is to get 20 bags of mail from Philadelphia to New Orleans in the mid 1800s in Rail, Sail, or Overland Mail from the National Postal Museum.
Learn more about the Early American Prairie with the game "Build-A-Prairie" and also by watching movies at "Experience the Prairie."
Wild West Quest is a computer game that allows you to travel back to the wild west, c. 1888, and search for hidden objects in 36 frontier locations!
Pioneer Lands is a computer strategy game. You are a brave pioneer making the long journey west, and you must conquer obstacles as you travel through unknown lands.
You are a slave in this interactive adventure, and you decide to escape on the Underground Railroad.
This site features several movies on Slavery in America and other slavery related themes.
CIVIL WAR & ABE LINCOLN
Hidden Mysteries - Civil War - Civil War computer game you can download. Play Free for one hour and try it out!
Watch as static photographs taken during the Civil War come alive in these unique Civil War "movies."
These interactive Civil War maps show you how different battles & skirmishes of the war unfolded. Follow the events of the Battle of Antietam or Gettysburg, or a number of lesser-known battles, to understand what really happened & how the battle progressed from start to finish.
Watch from several movie choices on the Civil War -- the war that lasted only 4 years, but claimed more lives than any other American war.
Click the links to take a video tour or a virtual tour (or both!) of Ford's Theater in Washington, DC, site of the fatal shooting of Abraham Lincoln. There are also more resources on this page for both teachers and students.
Check out the assembly line and the history of Henry Ford's Model T Ford on this fascinating video.
1914 - THE PANAMA CANAL
America constructed the Panama Canal, opening it in August of 1914. Learn more with all the resources from PBS: a movie, bonus clips, and interactive map, photo gallery, timeline, and more!
IMMIGRATION & ELLIS ISLAND
Pretend you are coming to New York to start a new life in America in 1916. This interactive game is provided by the Tenement Museum!
THE GREAT DEPRESSION
Watch from a selection of several movies to learn more about the Great Depression. Find out how people lived during those difficult times through home movies, newsreel footage, public service announcements, and some classic Hollywood films.
Go to World History Games: World Wars for more!
Explore the USS Pampanito, a submarine that America built and used during World War II.
Watch a multimedia presentation and read survivors tales about Pearl Harbor at this National Geographic site.
In 1969, America put the first man on the moon. See video and a slideshow of Apollo 11.
NASAKIDS has plenty of games and activities!
This site offers many games on varied government topics, including voting, immigration, balance of power, the Constitution, and the branches of government.
Is political redistribution right or wrong? And what is it anyway? Answer those questions for yourself with this Political Redistribution game form the Annenberg Center.
CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT
Scroll down in this list of movies on leaders and events in African-American History to find the section on the Civil Rights Movement.