Active Learning Projects has fun, hands-on educational activities for kids K-8.     Active Learning Projects has fun, hands-on educational activities for kids K-8. Support your child's interests, fill in gaps in school, go beyond, move ahead, fit your child's learning to their needs.    


Active Learning Projects in Humanities:

Make a Town - Kids Learning Activity
K - 4th Grade
Make Town has houses and stores to be cut out of paper and made into three-dimensional buildings. As they arrange the building into a town, kids plan yards, streets, parks and a downtown. Kids learn to think of what a town needs to work and why they are built in certain ways.

Odyssey Online
4th - 12th grades
There are quizzes and games, with pictures of genuine objects from museums, on the uses of the objects in ancient life. Well designed and fun it has information on Greece, Rome, Egypt, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Near East.

4 - 8th grade
Adventurous and romantic--this history of pirates includes a high seas adventure and the biographies of several pirates.

Letter Sounds
Pre-schoolers learn letter sound relationships playing a free educational alphabet game using the modalities--sight, sound, kinesthetics--that a computer makes possible. A pre-reading activity for young children to learn beginning phonics. Free software.

Seeds of Change Garden
Grades 3 - 8
Discusses both botanic and cultural aspects of food, with emphasis on the differences between New World and Old World plants. The site contains gardening information for kids, and recipes. The recipes include some that originated in either the New World or the Old World before contact, and so contain only foods known in that area at the time.

Make a Village - Kids Learning Activity
3 - 6th Grade
Make a Village has a church, an apartment house and several houses to make into a village or town. After cutting them out and assembling the structures, they can be arranged into a village. Students learn how town can be planned in advance, or how some just grow; how traffic patterns flow; how city services are delivered; and how transportation an zoning affect towns and cities.

The Incredible Art Department
Grade 3 - 8
Pictures to inspire students, and specific activities for students to make their own art using a variety of techniques.

Japanese Laquerware Art Lesson
2nd-6th grade
Using paper plates, students make a "lacquer" plate with a traditional Japanese design.

Relief Block Prints
4th grade up
Block prints in a Japanese style, made with plaster of Paris. (Other materials could be used.) Messy.

Islamic Art/Eraser Prints
A geometric design is made on an art gum eraser, then it is printed and rotated 1/4 turn (4 times) to make a larger design, often unexpectedly interesting.

Dress the Part
Students “dress” people from different social classes in Colonial Williamsburg.  The strong emphasis on social class and the material goods associated with each class—you knew instantly what status anyone occupied—is made very clear.  The privileges and restraints of each social class are implied in their dress; upper-class women wore more, and fancier, clothing, which meant that they had to be more careful of how they looked and what they did so as not to damage it, and it seems their clothing was less comfortable.  However, they had to do very little work.  But no one had much choice—you dressed, and lived, according to your class.

Make a Farm - Kids Learning Activity
K - 4th Grade
Make a Farm has a barn, silo, chicken coop, fences and other pieces to put together to make a farm. Kids plan what animals to raise and what crops are needed to feed both people and animals. A way for kids to learn about where food comes from.

At Home in the Heartland
A source on immigrants and others in Chicago, it gives brief biographies and outlines choices individuals had to make, an intersection of personal goals and the times in which they lived--the Depression, the aftermath of W.W.II, etc. The stories were apparently gathered from their descendents, so you get to make the same choices, and compare to the ones made by the real people. Somewhat slow, but visually rich. The personal interwoven with the historical makes it worthwhile.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Only the quiz is interactive, but still an interesting and important site.

"Cave Painting"
Earth-tone pastels to draw animals on rocks, in the style of cave paintings.
See a real cave filled with prehistoric drawings

The Secret of the Maya Glyphs (National Geographic)
Find and read Mayan glyphs in this adventure story.  A little slow to load.

 What is a Print?
 What is a print? lets the student use a online version of the tools and techniques in the (often numerous) steps in making different types of prints—woodcut, lithography, etching and screen printing.  Students are then shown a gallery of museum prints, by various artists, made with these techniques.  The most interesting examples show how the same print, or series of prints, can give very different effects with different inking, and other techniques.

Anglo-Apache Conflicts 1861-1888
Detailed accounts of conflicts between the Apache Indians and the white settlers (with the occasional involvement of  Mexicans, and the Mexican Army) in what is now Arizona, from 1861 to 1886.  It includes contemporary accounts from people on both sides (and sometimes third parties) of each incident, maps, biographies of the major players and a timeline.  Interesting, but depressing, reading.

Tour Egypt
This is the official internet site of The Ministry of Tourism, Egypt. It is the recipes that make it interactive, but the rest is interesting too.

Another mummy site—from a more aesthetic viewpoint.  Using interactive computer animation, you use classic techniques to make an Egyptian mummy. It shows both the techniques used and their cultural context.

Underground Railroad
As a runaway slave, you make decisions to try to avoid danger on your way North, from a ‘slave state’ to ‘Free States’ (which don’t allow slavery).  Even in a Free State, the law said that you could be caught and returned to your “owner”.  Even worse, by law (see the Dred Scott decision), all legal authorities—Justice of the Peace, policeman, etc.—were obliged to help catch and return you, no matter what their personal belief about slavery.  There were many brutal bounty hunters about, men paid to find and return ex-slaves like yourself.  Can you make the right decisions to avoid capture?

How to Make a Clay Whistle
How to make a clay whistle—pictures, step by step, how to form a clay whistle, why the whistle works in terms of air flow.   It also has designs into which the whistles were traditionally made, giving ideas of other designs for the whistle.

History Globe - The Jamestown Online Adventure
Play an interactive game as if you were in charge of founding the Jamestown colony.  Would you have made better decisions than those of the time?  If you had been in charge would fewer colonists have died?

Updated 6/1/2008

Picture of stained glass window - learning about art and history

Know an activity we should include? Please let us know:

E-Mail us at:

Copyright 1998-2008 Owl and Mouse Educational Software