Posts Tagged ‘Oregon Trail’

Explore the Oregon Trail

March 22nd, 2018


It’s Thursday, March 22, 2018, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:

National Oregon/California Trail Center – Trail Basics


Age Range: 9-18 (Grades 4-12, with parental supervision)


Take an adventure on the Oregon Trail with this website from The National Oregon/California Trail Center in Montpelier, Idaho.

Discover what life was like traveling on the more than 2,000-mile wagon trail from Independence, Missouri to Oregon City, Oregon. Using the right-hand sidebar menu explore trail basics such as: 

  • The Trek West – Who were the people who traveled the trail and why?
  • The Starting Point – Learn a little about Independence, Missouri.
  • The Wagon – Understand the importance of a good wagon to make the trek.
  • Mules, Horses, or Oxen – Which animal was best suited to pull the trail wagons?
  • Supplies – What things were needed for life on the trail?
  • A Day on the Trail – Discover what a typical day on the trail may have been like.
  • Dangers – What types of threats did the pioneers face?
  • Indians – Learn about Indian interactions with pioneers.

When you have finished learning the basics through the texts and images, use the upper menu to learn more. Under Historical Trails, select “Pioneers Talk” to read journal excerpts from folks who traveled the trail in the 1850’s. Select “Local Trail Landmarks” to see various important locations along the path. Browse through the various “Links” options to learn more about the Oregon/California Trail, western history, and other local and regional travel.

Use this website to supplement your U.S. history studies of pioneers, western expansion, and more.

Oregon Trail Virtual Tour

February 4th, 2011

Hi!  It’s Friday, February 4, 2011 and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

Recommended Website Oregon Trail Tour

Age Range: 9 and up (approximately, with parental supervision)

At this website you can virtually follow the pioneer path along the Oregon Trail and see the natural landmarks, forts, and trading posts that they saw on their long and dangerous journey West.  

When you get to the site you will see a menu tab at the top of the page. Click on “1843 Map” and “Modern Map” to compare the path of the Oregon Trail then and now.

Click on “Trail Tour” to begin your virtual journey through photographs and historical paintings accompanied by interesting facts and trivia about:

  • Independence, Missouri
  • Courthouse Rock
  • Chimney Rock
  • Fort Laramie
  • Independence Rock
  • Fort Bridger
  • Soda Springs
  • Fort Hall
  • Fort Boise
  • Whitman Mission
  • The Dalles
  • Oregon City

You can also view information about the landmarks by clicking on their locations on the maps. 

NOTE:  The “Travel Links” button was originally intended to lead to travel information for those who wanted to visit the Oregon Trail. However, most of the links now lead to error messages and/or to redirects that I have not reviewed.  Parents, AS ALWAYS, MUST PREVIEW AND SUPERVISE USE of this website.



Diane Flynn Keith
for ClickSchooling

Play History!

November 4th, 2010

Hi!  It’s Thursday, November, 4, 2010 and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

Recommended Website:
Playing History

Age Range: 8-18 (Mostly Grades 4-12, younger children and non-readers will need assistance. Parents must preview for suitable content.)

ClickScholar Cie pointed out this website that offers an archive of links to over 100 free, interactive, digital games and simulations about U.S. and World History, civics, and geography. Many of these educational games were created by foundations and universities and combine academic knowledge with the latest digital technology.

When you get to the site you’ll see some of the featured games. You can use the search engine or simply click on the small horizontal menu tab at the top of the page that says, “Browse Games.”  A new page opens with a smorgasbord of choices such as:

*Franklin’s Interactive Lifetime – Learn about Benjamin Franklin and his interests in communication, science, politics and diplomacy

*Argument Wars – Debate historical U.S. Supreme Court cases.

*Oregon Trail – Journey by covered wagon across 2000 miles of plains, rivers, and mountains.

*The Adventure Train – Take a cross-Canada tour of railroad history.

*Inca Investigation – Discover what life was like for the people of the Huánuco Pampa.

*Discover Babylon – Explore three periods of Mesopotamian history.

*Build Your Own Parthenon – Learn about ancient Greece and architecture.

Click on any one and a new page opens with a screenshot of the game. In many cases you’ll see reviewer comments in the “Recent Ratings & Reviews” by those who register at this site. (It’s not necessary to register to access the games.)  Some of the comments are helpful; some not so much. It is unclear to me if these comments are monitored by the site owners, so parents should preview to determine suitability of content.

In addition to games, this site links to educational and trivia quizzes. I found a “Place The State” geography game too. A couple of games led to broken links such as a game called, “How Weird Are You?” from the History Channel. 

Some of the titles seem a bit odd or cover topics that are controversial.  Therefore, I’ll say it again, PARENTS, AS ALWAYS, SHOULD PREVIEW AND SUPERVISE USE OF THIS SITE.

History Through Barbed Wire & More!

October 12th, 2006

Recommended Website:
Barb Wire Museum

Note on age range: Keep in mind that kids’ interests are different, as are their learning styles. There may be aspects of this site that appeal to all ages in one way or another.

History is one subject that has been traditionally taught through mind-numbing textbooks. You really don’t need them to learn about history. Everything in our environment has a history.

All you need to do is find out more about an item that piques your interest — and you will inevitably learn some history along the way. To prove the point, take a look at today’s website, The Barb Wire Museum. As explained at the website, it provides “the history of barbed wire, its artifacts, the significance of the invention, and the impact on the development of the Old West.”

When you get to the site you’ll see a welcome message and a menu bar above it. Put your cursor over “Barb Wire Collecting” to see a drop-down menu. Use it to learn about the history of barb wire and why it’s called “The Devil’s Rope,” how to make barb wire, view various illustrations of barb wire, and you can even see a collage of barbed wire images.

As I mentioned, learning about one obscure thing can springboard you to a history lesson that encompasses many topics. For example, barbed wire was instrumental in the development of the Old West. Click on “Western History” on the menu to learn how barbed wire was used in cattle management. From there, you can learn all about the history of cattle brands. Who knew?

If this sparks an interest in any topic about the Old West, then visit a site that has a directory of links to quality academic content about Westward Expansion.

You’ll find information on all kinds of people and events including:

  • The Alamo
  • Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show
  • The Donner Party
  • Lewis and Clark
  • The California Gold Rush
  • The Hatfield-McCoy Family Feud
  • Mountain Men & the Fur Trade
  • The Oregon Trail
  • Pioneer Life in Ohio
  • Doc Holliday
  • Sakajawea
  • The Santa Fe Trail
  • The Spanish Missions of California
  • The Transcontinental Railroad
  • Brigham Young
  • and much more!

You may want to bookmark this second site to return often. :)

Tramline Educational Field Trips

September 24th, 2004

Recommended Website:
Tramline Virtual Field Trips

Tramline Website features FREE Virtual Field Trips created for students in grades K-12 by educators using a software program that provides a host of navigation and orientation aids absent in other field trip formats. It helps to organize the chaos of the Web and saves the student and teacher hours of Internet research time.

When you get to the website you will see an introduction. Scroll down a little to see a menu of field trips that are divided into three sections:

  • Science Field Trips — Includes virtual field trips to learn about Antartica, Dinosaurs, Oceans, Insects, Sharks, Hurricanes, Volanoes, and more.
  • Other Field Trips — Includes virtual field trips to learn about the American Presidency, The Dark Ages, Filmmaking, Flight, Leonardo da Vinci, The Oregon Trail, Shakespeare, Women’s History, Pi and more!
  • Teachers Resource Field Trips — Some information for teachers about using the Field Trips at this site with resources for other complementary teaching tools as well.

Under any of the above sections, click on the title of the field trip that interests you and a new page opens with specific instructions on how to navigate the site to get the most out of the tour. Although it may seem a little awkward at first, once you try it with one virtual field trip — the format is the same for every
field trip archived at the site — making navigation much easier in the long run.

This is a fantastic educational tool, so bookmark it and return to take the many field trips offered — and explore new trips as they are added to the site.

Virtual Field Trips with Lesson Plans

March 12th, 2004

Recommended Website:

Oh, the teacher in you is going to love this web site! An educator who loves real field trips has developed this site so that teachers, students and homeschoolers can enhance their studies with field trips on the information highway. With virtual field trips for art, geography, history, literature, math, music, and science — she has done all of the curriculum planning and research for you and includes objectives, lesson plans, questions and answers, and additional activities to further learning too.

When you get to the site you will see a menu and a brief introduction. Click on the “Tour Guide” button for an explanation of how this site works. Then, explore the lists of field trips by subject. Click on any one and a new page opens with a description of the field trip and the learning goals. Click on “Go” to begin your Field Trip. A new page opens with the “Lesson & Navigation Plan” and a step-by-step guided tour that will provide a multi-media presentation of the subject matter. Here are just a few of the field trip titles to whet your appetite:

  • Sistine Chapel
  • Oregon Trail
  • Roller Coasters
  • Whale Watching
  • Treasure Island
  • William Shakespeare
  • American Sign Language
  • Bureau of Engraving & Printing
  • Western Composers
  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • National Zoo
  • and much more!

You could build a year’s worth of curriculum (or more!) around what is available at this website. It’s a great demonstration of the classroom of the future!

P.S. If you like this ClickSchooling recommendation, please pass it along (in its entirety) to other people and lists that might enjoy it. Invite them to join Clickschooling by visiting: