User-Friendly Website from Library of Congress Full of Brief Summaries, Primary Sources, and Other Pertinent Links
America's Story is a free resource that requires no setup time, no usernames or passwords, and minimal background knowledge of topics, historical figures, or time periods. Students can learn more about states, American pastimes, significant Americans, and more. This site is most age-appropriate for late Lower School- or early Middle School-aged students, as the summaries are phrased in an elementary way and are relatively superficial. The option to read articles and primary sources, however, leaves room for deeper challenge. I recommend using America's Story as a supplement to in-class activities or as an option for early finishers; it is best suited for small group or individual activity.
How I Use It
My students accessed this website independently as a supplement to our War of 1812 unit. They learned more about Andrew Jackson and the Battle of New Orleans by reading age-appropriate summaries on the website. Next year, I plan to integrate more resources from America's Story into various units of study because there are plentiful articles and primary sources that could further enhance established in-class activities.