I'm a horrible American.

My expat child is now about to progress to the third grade, and has received nearly zero education on United States history. She doesn't get it at school, as naturally, Philippine history is taught in, well, The Philippines. It's up to me to teach her. (Note, grade 1 - 5 here is basically the same as any other K-12 Montessori system)

I'm looking for software that will help me make history come alive for her as I teach it. Ideally, it will help me create lessons around early U.S. history (think Pilgrims, The British Are Coming, Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, Slavery, Civil war, etc.)

Needed features:

  • Covers early American history (as noted)
  • Includes lesson material (what happened), with illustrations and narrations, suitable to captivate a 6 year old child's attention for a while
  • Runs on Windows 7, or behaves well in VirtualBox on a different OS with Windows 7 as the host
  • Could also be web based, but must be usable for a 3MBPS connection

Nice to have:

  • Interactive narrations, lets her click on historical figures to hear them talk about themselves, or similar
  • Games that test the child's understanding of the lesson

Really nice to have:

  • Textures and art similar to (even if not quite as good as) Dear Esther

I don't want this to do all of the teaching for me, I just want to use it as a part of what I'm putting together. In an attempt to not make this summer's history lessons mostly lecture (so she actually appreciates them), I'm hoping to find something that puts more entertainment in the learning.

Anything out there? Free / Gratis / Proprietary is fine, I can't be too picky here.

1 Answer 1


There is another form of software you haven't considered - video and text. You'll have a tough time keeping her up with kids who get this in class every day, but if you had a history text from the U.S. for her current age, you could hit many of the topics with videos. PBS has a series called "The American Experience" which would be a great place to start looking. A family "American Video Night" might giver her more than a classroom could if the family talks about what you've seen, what you think.

  • 1
    I'd also consider this a reasonable answer, as he's answering right to the root of what I'm trying to accomplish. It's not what I asked for, but it does essentially the same thing, minus what I have in 'nice to have'. I'd rather find actual software for this, but if I can't, this is probably what I'll do.
    – Tim Post
    Commented Mar 10, 2014 at 13:04
  • Perhaps doing both is the right answer.
    – Marc
    Commented Mar 10, 2014 at 14:07

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