Best Social Studies Websites for Teachers

Don’t you love it when other teachers do the research for us?

best social studies websites

Recently, a high school teacher on our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE asked readers to suggest the best social studies websites around. As usual, our teacher friends came through in force! We’ve rounded up the links as well as the official tout from each website. Check it out and share your picks for the best social studies websites in the comments.

1. iCivics 

“iCivics gives students the necessary tools to learn about and participate in civic life, and teachers the materials and support to achieve this goal. Our free resources include print-and-go lesson plans, interactive digital tools, and award-winning games.”

2. Teaching Tolerance

“Teaching Tolerance is dedicated to reducing prejudice, improving intergroup relations and supporting equitable school experiences for our nation’s children. We provide free educational materials to teachers and other school practitioners in the U.S. and Canada.”

3. Library of Congress

“News, events, new content & more from the National Library of Congress & specific subject areas — from legislature to poetry, from music to science, from cataloging to copyright.”

4. National Archives

“Teach with documents using our online tool. Locate teachable primary sources. Find new and favorite lesson plans, and create your own activities for your students.”

5. Stanford History Education Group

“The Reading Like a Historian curriculum engages students in historical inquiry. Each lesson revolves around a central historical question and features sets of primary documents designed for groups of students with diverse reading skills and abilities.”

6. Historical Thinking Matters

A pick for best social studies websites “focused on key topics in U.S. history, that is designed to teach students how to critically read primary sources and how to critique and construct historical narratives.”

7. Classroom Law Project

“The Classroom Law Project brings vital and engaging civics and law-related education programs into Oregon schools, teaching students at all grade levels the values and skills essential to being a participating citizen in our democracy.”

8. Center for History and New Media

“Improving teaching and learning about the past through innovative digital resources, tools, and strategies.”

9. Teaching History

“Teachinghistory.org is designed to help K–12 history teachers access resources and materials to improve U.S. history education in the classroom.”

10. World History Matters

“A portal to world history websites including Women in World History, World History Sources and more.”

11. Teaching American History

“The Ashbrook Center at Ashland University worked with the National Endowment for the Humanities to develop web-based lesson plans for U.S. history and American government teachers.”

12. California History-Social Science Project

“A statewide network of scholars and K-12 teachers, dedicated to providing the highest quality history instruction, with a special focus on meeting the needs of English learners, native speakers with low literacy, and students from economically disadvantaged communities.”

13. Smithsonian Education

“The Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access (SCLDA) uses all the Smithsonian offers to empower learners to explore their own interests and collaborate with others to bring ideas to life. We create models and methods that make the Smithsonian a learning laboratory for everyone.”

14. National Constitution Center

“The first and only institution in America established by Congress to “disseminate information about the United States Constitution on a non-partisan basis in order to increase the awareness and understanding of the Constitution among the American people.”

15. Hippocampus

“Free, core academic web site that delivers rich multimedia content–videos, animations, and simulations–on general education subjects to middle-school and high-school teachers and college professors, and their students, free of charge.”

16. The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

“A nonprofit organization devoted to the improvement of history education. The Institute has developed an array of programs for schools, teachers, and students that now operate in all fifty states, including a website that features more than 60,000 unique historical documents.”

17. Crash Course World History 

“Tons of awesome courses in one awesome YouTube channel- World History, US History, Economics, U.S. Government and Politics.”

18. Discovery Education Virtual Field Trips

“Take your students beyond the classroom walls and into some of the world’s most iconic locations for rich and immersive learning experiences — no permission slips required.”

19. EdTechTeacher

“Our list of Best History Websites aims to provide quick, convenient, and reliable access to the best history-oriented resources online in a wide range of categories and has been designed to benefit history teachers and their students.”

 20. HipHughes History 

“HipHughes History has over 300 Instructional Videos for students of the Social Studies, teachers flipping their class and life-long learners. So whether you’re looking for a pedagogical ally, a non-biased explanation of that new Supreme Court case or you’re a kid who needs to study HHH has your brain’s back!”

21. Big History Project

“By sharing the big picture and challenging middle and high school students to look at the world from many different perspectives, we hope to inspire a greater love of learning and help them better understand how we got here, where we’re going, and how they fit in.”

22. Facing History and Ourselves

“Empowering teachers & students to think critically about history & to understand the impact of their choices.”

23. The Howard Zinn Project

“Based on the lens of history highlighted in Howard Zinn’s best-selling book A People’s History of the United States, the website offers free, downloadable lessons and articles organized by theme, time period, and reading level.”

24. Horrible Histories BBC

A pick for best social studies websites where you can “watch episodes, play games, and sing along to your favourite Horrible Histories songs!”

25. Digital History

“Enhances history teaching and research through primary sources, an online textbook, extensive reference resources, and interactive materials.”
What are your picks for the best social studies websites? Share in the comments and we will update this list!

Posted by Dana Truby

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