ActiveHistory Simulations

This list lists some of the most popular online history simulations and other interactive history resources written for Active History. All come complete with student worksheets and teacher support materials.

It is not a comprehensive list of the resources on the site; neither does it cover the hundreds of PowerPoints and Worksheets available!

Ancient and Medieval History


Undercover in Imperial Rome

This simulation is designed to provide students with an engaging, enjoyable and rigorous introduction to Imperial Rome. As they journey around the virtual landscape, they will learn about the main personalities and chornology of the Empire.
Undercover in Ancient Rome

The Silk Roads Adventure

An online simulation: students journey around the ancient Silk Roads trying to make their fortune. Complete with a self-contained workpack for students and teacher support materials.

Design your own Heraldic Coat of Arms

Design your own coat of arms by answering a series of detailed questions about your personality and interests. The computer uses the information to design your shield, choose the colour scheme, and recommend the symbols you should use. A great classroom project which turns into a brilliant display of finished projects!
Battle of Hastings History Game

The Battle for the Throne: 1066

How would you have fared as King of England in 1066? A popular decision-making simulation game designed to get students thinking about the issues rather than just learning the facts.
Battle of Hastings History Game

Interview William the Conqueror!

Why use a dull textbook to learn about William the Conqueror when you can interview him "live" yourself? An exciting simulation for learning about the man and his reign, complete with a range of worksheets to choose from!

Time Machine Journey to the Middle Ages

A unique game for learning about life in the Medieval Town and Village. Talk to people, trade objects and use your wits to find the missing pieces of the time machine and return home!
Medieval Village History Game

Stairway to Heaven / Highway to Hell!

Answer a series of Medieval questions about your beliefs and interests, and learn whether you are a saint or a sinner, and what career path could channel you into heaven.
Medieval Church History Game

The Black Death Simulation / End of Unit Assessment

A self-marking assessment testing both factual knowledge and sourcework skills. Students can play the game for as long as they wish, then at the end they are presented with two scores in the form of a certificate, both of which can be handed to the teacher to put into the markbook!

Design your own Medieval Cathedral

In this activity, part of the Medieval Religion unit, students answer a series of questions asked by King Henry II. Based on the quality of the responses he then decides how likely he is to let them build a cathedral. Complete with a worksheet and a live "leaderboard" to build up a sense of competition!

The Worst Jobs in History: Medieval

This activity can be used as a stand-alone lesson, homework assignment or as part of a broader unit on "Was life Good or Bad during this particular period?". The worksheet has basic activities for a 30 minute lesson, and extension tasks that could be followed up later.

Castles: Defence and Attack!

A game of strategy: Spend your budget on your choice of features, then read a story of how your castle fares when faced with attack!
Castle Building Game



Voyages of Discovery Adventure Game

An online simulation: students traverse the oceans searching for spices and learning about key explorers. Complete with worksheets and teacher support materials.

Henry VII: The Issues of the Reign

Based on the activity in the textbook by Ian Dawson, this game encourages new A-Level Early Modernists to "think sixteenth century" by taking a series of decisions as the first Tudor Monarch.
Interview King Henry VIII!

The Henrician Reformation: Cause & Consequence

Learn about the causes and events of the Schism and the Reformation under Henry VIII in this decision making simulation game.
The Henrician Reformation Game

Analysing Reformation Woodcuts

These sources are fantastic for students of the Reformation, because they were designed to channel sophisticated ideas for an illiterate lay audience. This activity helps students decipher the message of a range of woodcuts and develop sourcework skills in the process.
Reformation Woodcuts

What is the Message of The Ambassadors?

A step-by-step analysis of this mysterious painting, through which students are encouraged to produce their own theories before comparing them to those of other historians.

Interview King Henry VIII!

Interview the English King on any subject of your choice, and he will answer through the use of an artificial intelligence channel!
Interview King Henry VIII!

English Civil War Simulation: Don't Lose Your Head!

A decision-making simulation game as King Charles I: Can you channel your country away from Civil War, or will your head end up in a bucket?
English Civil War Game

An Adventure in the Ottoman Empire

A unique simulation for learning about the Ottoman Empire in the age of Suleiman the Magnificent. Journey around his empire, meet key people, deal with important issues, and try to survive!
The Ottoman Empire under Suleiman the Magnificent

The Mid-Tudor Crisis: Adventure Game

How would you have handled the rough and tumble of Mid-Tudor politics? Play this game and find out for yourself!
The Mid-Tudor Crisis

Time Machine Journey to Renaissance Florence

Learn about the key individuals, places, discoveries and creations of the Renaissance in this innovative decision-making simulation game! Complete with four different worksheets and quizzes.
Renaissance Florence - Adventure Game

Are you a Lutheran or a Catholic?

An online game. Answer a series of questions about which religious viewpoints you agree with most, and the computer provides you with a detailed analysis of your position.
Are you a Lutheran or a Catholic?

The Circumnavigation of Sir Francis Drake

A Google Earth tour of 32 locations, each one with a narrative summary and a link to a primary source account. Six differentiated worksheets are provided to accompany the resource.
Google Earth History Activity

The Worst Jobs in History: Early Modern

This activity can be used as a stand-alone lesson, homework assignment or as part of a broader unit on "Was life Good or Bad during this particular period?". The worksheet has basic activities for a 30 minute lesson, and extension tasks that could be followed up later.



Living Through the French Revolution

Could you have prevented the French Revolution from happening? Would you have survived it? Play this decision-making game to find out!
French Revolution: Year 9 History Game

The Transatlantic Slave Trade: the "Middle Passage"

Based on the memoirs of Olaudah Equiano and the story of the Amistad rebellion, this simulation attempts, as far as is ever possible, to help students understand the harrowing "Middle Passage" across the Atlantic. Complete with five different lesson plans, students then produce a memoir as did Equiano, which later becomes the centerpiece of their campaign to abolish slavery, thereby putting the role of black people in the abolition movement center-stage.

Home Front in World War Two: Year 9 History Game

American Civil War Simulation: You are the President!

A decision-making game for one or two players, complete with structured worksheets.
American Civil War History Game

Horatio Ramsbottom: Victorian Entrepreneur

Do you have what it takes to succeed in the world of Victorian business? A decision-making game designed to teach students all about the main factors behind the industrial revolution.
Industrial Revolution Simulation

The Coalbrookdale Interactive Census

Learn about social conditions in 19th Century Britain by using a searchable database. Analyse family sizes, the most popular jobs, overcrowding and migration in a unique way.
Coalbrookdale Interactive Census: Expansion, Trade and Industry Game

Who was Jack the Ripper?

Build up your own profile of the Whitechapel Murderer and then watch as the computer matches your answers to the most likely suspects!

Crime and Punishment in the 19th Century: You're the Judge!

Pass sentence on ten criminals from the nineteenth century, then compare your decisions to those actually made at the time!

The Worst Jobs in History: Victorian

This activity can be used as a stand-alone lesson, homework assignment or as part of a broader unit on "Was life Good or Bad during this particular period?". The worksheet has basic activities for a 30 minute lesson, and extension tasks that could be followed up later.



The RISE of 20thC Dictators: "Which 20th Century Dictator are YOU?"

These are two stand-alone simulation to help students compare and contrast how single-party state rulers attained and maintained power. It guides students through 10 key issues explaining how and why dictatorships are able to survive. Students complete the accompanying self-study workpack to turn their findings into a rigorous essay. It also provides a great way of revising and developing their earlier essay focusing on one dictator.

The RULE of 20thC Dictators: "Which 20th Century Dictator are YOU?"

A Virtual Tour of Tsarist Russia

A fantastic way of getting to grips with the problems of Imperial Russia on the eve of the First World War. With 65 locations and a vast array of tasks and genuine colour photographs.
Tsarist Russia History Game

Liberal England 1906-1914

Take on the role of a cabinet minister in this challenging game and channel your energies through the rough and tumble of early 20th Century politics.
British Depth Study, 1906-1918

Causes of World War One: You are the Kaiser!

Was Germany really to blame for World War One? Take on the role of Kaiser Wilhelm II and decide for yourself in this decision-making game!

Life in the Trenches: Can you Survive?

Take on the role of a normal Tommy and head across the channel into France, then decide how to react to events as they arise in World War One between 1914-1918.
World War One: Life in the Trenches Simulation

Treaty of Versailles Roleplay Simulation

Choose which member of the "Big Three" to play. Over several rounds of negotiations, how far are you able to achieve all of your objectives against your two rivals? Complete with worksheet.
Wall Street Crash - GCSE History Simulation

The Treaties of Sevres and Lausanne: How successfully did Lloyd George handle Turkey after World War One?

In this simulation you will take on the role of an advisor to the British Prime Minister, David Lloyd George. You will be asked how you think he should handle the Ottoman Empire after World War One. You will also be asked factual questions to test your knowledge. Think carefully about each of your responses.

The League of Nations in the 1920s

Be in role as an ambitious civil servant on the make! Complete with a worksheet, this comprehensive two-part decision-making game forms the basis of a stand-alone scheme of work.

Weimar Germany - you're the boss!

How would you have handled the trials and tribulations of Germany after World War One? An ambitious two-part game covering 1919-29.
The Weimar Republic: GCSE History Game

The Wall St. Crash: Playing the Stock Market

When will you buy? When will you sell? How much profit can you make? This American history game shows the factors affecting share values and how a stock market crash happens.
Wall Street Crash - GCSE History Simulation

The Causes of the Spanish Civil War

Rank the problems facing Spain which are most urgent, select which policies you think are the most appropriate response for each, then get told which party most closely matched your own preferences.
Tsarist Russia History Game

Interview Adolf Hitler!

Interview the dictator of Germany on any subject of your choice, and he will answer through the use of an artificial intelligence system!
Interview Adolf Hitler

Hitler's Foreign Policy, 1933-39

By playing this game you will learn about how Hitler's policies led to World War Two, and consider whether this war could have been prevented. Three possible worksheets accompany the simulation.
Wall Street Crash - GCSE History Simulation

Causes of World War Two: Google Earth Tour / Worksheet

A Google Earth tour, complete with a worksheet, designed to teach students about the main events, but also to encourage them to reflect on the shifting pattern of international alliances.

The Home Front in World War Two

How successfully would you have fared as a leader of Britain in World War Two? Take a series of decisions and learn what the consequences would have been!
Home Front in World War Two: Year 9 History Game

Churchill: Hero or Villain?

This detailed, stand-alone study unit is based around an interactive Head2Head Virtual Interview with Winston Churchill. The unit is designed to be used with Year 9 students (13-14 years) but is easily adaptable to other contexts. The unit develops sourcework and essay-writing skills, and the outcome is a detailed, structured essay answering the key question "Was Winston Churchill a hero, or a villain?".

James Spod: Undercover in Nazi Germany!

Learn about the political, economic and social landscape of the Third Reich as you fly across the British Channel and journey around Berlin on a mission to assassinate Hitler!
Time Machine to Nazi Germany! - GCSE History Game

James Spod: Undercover in Mussolini's Italy

Learn about the political, economic and social landscape of Fascist Italyas you fly across the British Channel and journey around Italy on a mission to assassinate Mussolini!
Battle of Hastings History Game

Lenin and the USSR: A Decision-Making Adventure

Take on the role of a Politburo heavyweight and see how successfully you help Lenin to rule the USSR between 1917-24. A great simulation for approaching what can be a very complicated topic!
USSR under Lenin

The Rise of Stalin: A Sweet Roleplay Exercise!

This interactive exercise forms part of the ActiveHistory unit on Stalin's Rise to Power. Students take the role of five key members of the Politburo at the end of 1922. The respective power of these figures is represented by distributing a large bag of sweets between them.

Josef Stalin: Head2Head Interview

Interview Josef Stalin, the Soviet Dictator, on any subject of your choice, and he will answer through the use of an artificial intelligence channel!
Interview Josef Stalin

Soviet Economy Simulator

Students design their own "5-Year Plans" designed to prepare the USSR for war with the West. They can then compare the results with what actually happened in Stalin's USSR.

The Middle East Chatshow Challenge

In this simulation you take the role of one of two guests debating the key issue "Who is Responsible for the Middle East Conflict?". As the conversation progresses you will be tested on your factual knowledge and sourcework skills.

Vietnam War Decision Making Game

A game designed to introduce the causes, course and effects of this deadly war in American History. How would you have reacted under pressure? Would you have survived?

The Vietnam War Simulation

Interview Martin Luther King Jr!

Interview the American civil rights leader on any subject of your choice, and he will answer through the use of an artificial intelligence system!

Interview Martin Luther King Jr

Campaign 1965: Selma - The Simulation

In this simulation you will learn about key figures involved in the struggle as events unfold step-by-step. For each character you will be invited to step inside their shoes and consider how you should react to the situation you face if your objective is to attract favourable media attention that will help get a Voting Rights Bill through Congress. In this way you will form a judgement about how each character helped or hindered the success of the campaign (deliberately or inadvertently!) and which people were most significant in the struggle.
The Selma Simulation

Beatlemania: Are you the Fifth Beatle?!

In this simulation, you will be presented with a series of situations that faced The Beatles during the 1960s, and regular video clips of The Beatles being interviewed and singing their songs.
At the end of the simulation you will be told how many of these decisions matched those of the real group. Based on your choices, you will then be matched to a person who has been described as the "fifth Beatle" and you can research them further.

Miscellaneous History Resources


Voting Systems: Which one is best?

A simulation designed to make the point that there are many different models of democracy in the world, and that students need to decide for themselves which is the best channel.
Which party should I vote for?

Historiography Lectures

A series of accessible interactive lectures and tasks designed to introduce history students to the concept of historiography. Great for stretching more able students or for use in Theory of Knowledge lessons.

Are you Left-Wing or Right-Wing?

An interactivity to help you decide whether you are Left or Right Wing.. Rank 10 key issues by order of preference, then decide which party most closely reflects your own views on those issues.
Are you left or right wing?

The Commodities Game

Helps to teach students about the realities of international trade prior to a study of the growth of the British Empire. How much money can they make on the global commodities market?
trading game

Medicine Through Time: Virtual Interview

Interview Dr. Fox, the Medicine Through Time Expert, on any subject of your choice, and she will answer through the use of an artificial intelligence system!
GCSE Medicine Through Time Game

Interactive Cartoon Analyses

Dozens of picture sources, with exam-style questions accompanying them. Students write an answer using a writing frame, and then get provided with a model answer to compare it to.

ActiveHistory Mysteries

The "History Mysteries" lessons are designed as stand-alone projects which each last 3-4 hours. I deliver a different "Mystery" each year from the age of 11 years so that students have an assessment project each year which build directly on their previous one. Through engaging historical topics, they teach skills of problem formulation, deductive reasoning, independent research, groupwork and structured writing. There is a standard teacher lesson plan and student record sheet / markscheme for each activity.
History Podcast Database

History Display Materials

Dozens of high-resolution educational posters and other stimulus designed specifically to be printed off and put around your history classroom.
History Podcast Database

ActiveHistory Podcast Database

This Activehistory resource links to thousands of podcasts in a fully searchable database.
History Podcast Database

History in the News

All the latest history-related headlines and TV listings, updated daily!

QR Code "Treasure Hunt" Generator

Create “Treasure Hunt” challenges based on QR codes. Simply provide a list of questions and answers. This program will then dynamically create QR codes for each question which can then be put on display around the classroom / school for students to answer.

History Essay Planner

This fantastic tool allows students and teachers to submit one or many essay titles and get provided with essay plans for every single questions! Although not infallible it is a brilliant tool for helping students to develop their understanding of how essays should be structured.
History Essay Planner

History Essay Marker

Following from the essay planner, this essay reader provides students and teachers with some initial points to consider about the structure, phrasing and content of the first draft of a history essay. It provides some very detailed ideas about how a written piece can be improved.
History Essay Planner

Secret Codemaker

This simple interface will channel a message into a secret code using a substitution cypher. When you click 'Submit' it will be turned into a worksheet for your class which you can print out or copy and paste into a word processor for further editing [example].

Citation Generator

Type the title and / or author of a book, and get a professional Harvard-Author Date reference for your essays, internal assessments and personal studies.

book reference

And don't forget that ActiveHistory's sister website,, is also jam-packed with free templates for creating interactive learning resources!


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