Top Pick

Best Websites and Games for U.S. History and Civics

Sometimes, the history that students learn about in textbooks is boiled down to key events and dates. These great websites and games let them explore tricky topics from different perspectives and walk a mile in the shoes of important decision-makers. Use them to help your students look back in time -- or at current events -- in a whole new way.

1.
Mission US: Flight to Freedom Publisher: Thirteen/WNET
Gripping, choice-driven story of slave life and resistance
Grades Grades 5-8
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
2.
Mission US: For Crown or Colony? Publisher: Thirteen/WNET
First-person journey through pre-Revolutionary War America
Grades Grades 6-8
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
3.
Argument Wars Publisher: iCivics.org
Courtroom sim covers ethics, the Constitution, and the art of argument
Grades Grades 6-10
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
4.
Branches of Power Publisher: Filament Games
Power and control levers become clear through lawmaking
Grades Grades 6-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 3
Teacher Rating 4
5.
Executive Command Publisher: iCivics.org
Sim creates light version of being the President of the United States
Grades Grades 6-12
Type Game
Price
Platforms Mac, Windows, Linux
Learning Rating 3
Teacher Rating 4
6.
iCivics URL: http://www.icivics.org/
Assortment of exceptionally well-designed games demystifies government
Grades Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
7.
Tiki-Toki URL: http://www.tiki-toki.com/
Create stunning multimedia timelines for any project or purpose
Grades Grades 7-12
Type Website
Price Free - $100/year
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
8.
Your Commonwealth URL: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org
Engage with passionate international perspectives from youth
Grades Grades 7-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
9.
Historypin URL: http://www.historypin.com
Crowdsourcing is key to making history accessible, approachable
Grades Grades 8-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
10.
Smarthistory URL: http://smarthistory.khanacademy.org/
Bring traditional art education to life with fresh, interactive multimedia
Grades Grades 8-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 3
Teacher Rating 4
11.
PBS LearningMedia URL: http://www.pbslearningmedia.org/
Impressive collection of classroom-ready, free digital resources
Grades Grades Pre-K-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
12.
Democracy 3 Publisher: Positech Games
Nuanced political sim about the balancing act of government
Grades Grades 9-12
Type Game
Price $24.95 individual; $99.95 classroom
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
13.
The Republia Times Publisher: Lucas Pope
Unassuming editorial sim elegantly exposes the business of bias
Grades Grades 9-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3