Archive for the ‘history’ category

Pong, Pac-Man, Minecraft and More Historic Games

May 6th, 2021

The Stong: Video Game History


Grades 4 and up, with parental supervision

The International Center for the History of Electronic Games is part of The Strong – a museum in Rochester, New York. ICHEG “collects, studies, and interprets video games, other electronic games, and related materials and the ways in which electronic games are changing how people play, learn, and connect with each other, including across boundaries of culture and geography.”

When you get to the site, you can explore:

  • Game History
  • Video Game History Timeline
  • Key Moments in Video Game History PDF
  • Interpreting the History of Electronic Games
  • The timeline has the history of electronic games and delivery systems from the 1940s to the 2010s including:
  • Pong
  • Space Invaders
  • Pac-Man
  • Donkey Kong
  • Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Play Station
  • The Sims
  • Nintendo Wii
  • Minecraft
  • and more!

Just click on each decade in the timeline to learn about legendary games and game systems, along with their inventors including Will Wright, Ralph Baer, Don Daglow, and others. You’ll enjoy a brief textual history along with photographs.

When you’re through with the timeline, check out other parts of The Strong: the National Toy Hall of Fame, the World Video Game Hall of Fame, and more! The gamers in your home are sure to want to take a field trip or family vacation to experience this museum in real-time.

Learn about Alaska

April 22nd, 2021



Grades 1-8, with parental supervision


While this website is still under construction, there is a lot of great information and activities for kids to learn about Alaska on this website from the University of Alaska.

When arriving at the home page, either use the graphic or the sidebar menu to navigate to: 

  • Cool Critters – Learn all about the animals that make Alaska their home.
  • Know Alaska – Discover quick facts about Alaska, its geography, and history.
  • Get Active – Check out all the different sports that are played in Alaska then take a Fact or Fiction quiz about fitness.
  • Lit Kids – Discover books with an Alaskan setting.

(Love the Arts and We’re Cooking are still under construction and the Fun and Games section is no longer working.)

When you are finished exploring this website geared towards kids, click the link in the lower-left corner, then select the “Teaching & Learning” link for teacher, parent, and student activities to add to your studies.

History Lessons with Primary Sources

April 15th, 2021



All grades, with parental supervision


This mobile friendly website provides access to thousands of primary resources from the National Archives to use throughout your history studies.

In addition to this, this site also provides activity lessons, guides to using primary resources, and much more. If you would like to save and share primary resources and create your own activities as well as gain access to hundreds of more educator-created activities, you can register on the site for a free account.

To begin looking for resources, when you arrive at the home page, scroll a little to find the bar with three selection options: 

  • Explore – Use the keyword search engine to search the primary source database or browse by time period or document type including textual document, photograph, video, audio, artwork and artifacts, or poster.
  • Discover – Locate created activities and lessons similarly to searching for a source but visitors can further refine search results to grade level, thinking skill, and activity type.
  • Create – In order to create an activity or lesson, you will need to register for a free account. Once this is done, use the tool to make your own lessons, add elements, create instructions for students and teachers, and much more. There is a functionality to share your lessons with your students and others as well as have students email you their responses to questions and view those responses in a log in your account. This is a powerful tool for creating your own activities to use in your classroom.

This website provides many of the tools, instruction, and resources you might need to have to use primary resources in your classroom.

Video Library for Social Studies

April 1st, 2021 – World Studies Video Dictionary


Grades 5 and up, with parental supervision


The Georgia Department of Education offers this terrific free “Video Dictionary” to help students learn Social Studies.

When you get to the site you’ll see a menu of over 30 topics that include: 

  • African Savanna
  • Anti-Semitism
  • Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster
  • Cortes
  • Ganges River
  • Great Barrier Reef
  • Incas
  • Montezuma II
  • NAFTA – North American Free Trade Agreement
  • Ottoman Empire
  • Simon Bolivar
  • The Cultural Revolution
  • Toussaint L’Ouverture
  • Treaty of Versailles
  • And more!

Click on a topic of interest, and watch a professionally produced, well-narrated video that explains the term, its history, and its relevance – all accompanied by a montage of film clips, illustrations, and photographs.

These videos are a great way to introduce the people, cultures, countries, and events that have impacted our world.

What Happened Today in History?

March 18th, 2021

Library of Congress – Today in History


Grades 3-12, with parental supervision


Discover what happened today in history at this website from the Library of Congress.

When clicking on today’s link, the date should automatically be added to the end of the URL taking you to the highlighted events of the day. Looking for a specific date? No problem. Use the “Select date” field to enter your desired date and click go. Each entry includes: 

  • Information about the event or person
  • Relevant images
  • Links to “Learn More” about the subject.

There are links throughout the text as well to dig even deeper.

This is a neat resource to add to your daily history lessons.

Discover Spanish Artists

March 13th, 2021



All grades, with parental supervision


This website offers a unique opportunity for your children to learn about art masterpieces housed in the Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain.

When you get to the site you will see a brief introduction and a menu that offers 7 coloring pages of great works of art as follows: 

  • Noble Man with Hand on Chest by El Greco
  • El Buen Pastor by Murillo
  • The Maids of Honour by Velazquez
  • The Sunshade by Goya
  • The Duke of Lerma by Rubens
  • Still Life by Zurbaran
  • The Puppet by Goya

Click on one of these, and a new page opens with a black and white coloring page of the masterpiece. Print it out, and your child can color it. The coloring page includes a paragraph of information about the picture and the artist who painted it.

This provides a great opportunity to introduce kids to art and art history. In fact, to further the learning, click on the words “The Prado” in the introduction, and you can see pictures of the real artwork on display at the museum. (Click on the images for a larger view.)

Note: These 2 pages are part of the vast website that provides info on the art, life, and culture of Spain. We did not review the rest of the site. Therefore, as always, parents should preview the site to determine the suitability of content for your own children.