and Unschooling

Emily Strength wrote:

"The pop culture of today is the history of tomorrow."
I responded:
This is true of music, clothing, food, hairstyles, slang, cars, kitchen design, dishes, shoes, musical instruments (think of pianos or guitars you have known—which were from the 19th century, maybe, or early 20th, or 1970's, or recently made by Yamaha which kicks musical... butt).

Any of those topics could lead to very many trails involving technology, international trade, cultural borrowings, religion (why didn't I say "kicks ass" above? It would have disturbed some people, and now it still can; sorry), superstition, money...

The science of today is the "What were they THINKING!?" of tomorrow [as we shake our heads and roll our eyes about scientific fallacies of the past, until they are (many of them, individually, sometimes randomly) shown to have been fact after all].

The proper language and punctuation of today will irritate those not yet born, in 35 years.

Find this river of newness becoming history that's flowing right around and through us all, and learn to ride it openly and happily if you can!

the original , 2018, Radical Unschooling Info

Games and Animation links at the Best History Sites page, with animated maps and timelines.

Childhood in WWII, London, BBC site. The house is good— when you finish exploring a room, click on the left, on the house icon, to get back to the main house. That's all part of a larger site called History for Kids. So it has a British slant (as does History Mole, below) but fill in anything you wish they hadn't left out, when you discuss it with your own Australian or Canadian or Chinese or French or American kids. No problem! History is infinite, that's for sure. You've gotta start somewhere, and pretty much it doesn't matter where you start because it's all connected, like a universe-sized dot-to-dot you could never finish but you started when you were born. Or maybe before...

History can't be learned "in order," because it's never going to be orderly. It doesn't even happen in order, because often facts aren't discovered until years after incidents occur, and so the history of them unfolds and is clarified and expanded all the time. People knew zip about Pompeii until 1700-and-some years after it was buried. Someday people might know more about Amelia Earhart's disappearance or the assassination of JFK than they do now, after all who knew them personally will have been long dead.

History is an ongoing process of recording and interpretting what happened. The study of the recording of history is called "historiography." That's the history of history, and the philosophy of history.

The site this linked to is gone.
I'm keeping the beautiful jukebox
because it was great menu art.

Some people like timelines, and they're fun for browsing. Here's one on astronomy, at a site called "history mole" (more, below right). They also have a timeline on the Gregorian Calendar, which wasn't even created until (by its own reckoning) 1582, and was accepted for international use by China in 1949 (China, of course, having its own separate calendar for internal purposes). has a great British History Timeline.

See also, at that site,
Colonization & Conquest
Early Literature
Technology and Engineering
Trade and Commerce
...but you can't see them all in one day. They have quota, kind of like that WWII ration. If you register for the site you can get more per day, free. You can see some each day without registering, so pace yourself!

History can be nearly current, like comparative pop/funk of the '80s— was Prince really all that much greater than Michael Jackson? Was it because he played guitar? What about the history of the guitar? Does Minneapolis create better musicians than Gary, Indiana, or does it even matter? Is Bob Dylan evidence for Minneapolis? One thing leads to another. Thinking about Minneapolis can lead to thoughts of U.S. history, of early 19th century border fortifications, the Mississippi River, the French in Canada, and in Louisiana. You can let your mind float downstream (or up). "Hiawatha" would've been set in that area, and Longfellow wrote that and many other things of childhood, and parents, and night time.

Play with that kind of idea connection. Try to connect or skip over things here and make your own kinds of connections and diversions:

river      house      train      food      china      tools      tree      animals      religion      art      technology      preservation      glass      music      wood      sound      birds      bedding      illumination      fuel      writing      paper     

Will any of those thoughts you've just had be on the test?

(Just in case any of that got you thinking and you need more info...)

Click that beautiful Jello art above for an adventure.     More connections to Food
For other local trivia, try the box above.

California History Trivia

There used to be a link here to a game about flags of Texas, but it's gone. Darn it. It built up to something most people don't know exists, though: The pledge of allegiance to the flag of Texas:

 photo TexasPledge.jpg

Australia—regional history and other categories


Lively History
My friend Steve Muhlberger taught history at Nipissing University (Northbay, Ontario) and has a really great blog: Muhlberger's World History. Also check out his trip to India.

I Remember JFK

Pleasant memories of baby-boomers, including a TV ad for Slinkies and Fizzies and

Living History
Living history museums have existed for only a few decades, and they're increasing in popularity and number. At a living history museum, some of what you see will be people in costume doing things people of that place and period might have done. Here is site describing several of them in the U.S.: America's Outdoor History Museums.
Hi Sandra -

I just read your page regarding living history museums and thought you might enjoy learning about this one, from the town of my birth, Paradise, California. Every year the town celebrates "Gold Nugget Days." They have "Days of Living History" and several other events throughout the year. The museum has lots of hands on "period" activities. The town also has a big to-do for Johnny Appleseed Days - parade, craft booths in the park etc.
Thanks for your wonderful site/blog etc!


Some museums are seasonal or occasional, such as El Rancho de las Golondrinas, south of Santa Fe (the "home" of one of the American Girls dolls). I saw docents doing in-character presentations at Fort Snelling in Minneapolis. They have reenactments sometimes.

Shantytown, in Westland, New Zealand, is a gold rush town museum, and if people know of any good museums I can add to represent Australia, please write

Living history museums aren't perfect history, but can be memorable for kids. And if when you see the recreations you know what they've done wrong, that might show you that you know more than you thought you knew! Or if you ask later, it might turn out that they've discovered something to shed light on what you had previously read, heard or figured. History changes!

Illuminated History
Medieval Women Interactive pages, and not just about women, and not just for children. Click around on the pictures. There are voices and music and details, and it goes to some serious philosophy and theology in some places, too. It can be a kids' site, or a definitely-not, but those who can't read won't see anything untoward. It's pretty, and it's engaging. (requires Flash)

The Bayeux Tapestry hundreds-of-years-old cartoon; now an animated cartoon!

Geoffrey Chaucer Hath a Blog, with tons of links to other Middle English, historical, humor and medievalist sites. And they sell t-shirts!

Bog Mummies, and more bog mummies, with links to other kinds of mummified ancient people, and a Chinese mummy.
Other kinds of mummies and how to make your own at home.

Archaeology for kids (U.K. site)

What prehistoric people ate, and some history of agriculture.

Q&A from Dig Magazine and their illustrated links page

Vikings, from a BBC site with lots of links, photos, interactive pages, and they have similar sections on Egyptians, Greeks , Britons , ancient Romans , and Anglo Saxons . I can't begin to describe how much is there. It ties into everything in the whole wide world. Go look!

Western Memories
Cowboy History (lots of photos)
Chuckwagon Etiquette and recipes
Cowboys and Legends
Age and Ages
Accomplishments by Age of Do-er. Fill in your age, or anyone's age, and see what people (famous or not) accomplished at that age.

Art History
Art History News— yeah, that's right. News of the world of art history.
Timeline of Art History

History of Photography, which is art but also technology, and came up while I was working on this page because Holly picked up a magazine commemorating Queen Elizabeth's 80th birthday, and it had a photograph of her in every year since she was a baby. Holly saw that most of the photos before the 1950s were in black and white, but the baby picture was in color, and asked whether they had color photography in those days. We considered whether it was tinted, or maybe a four-color separation, but no... Check it out!

Music History
This Day In Music History— several styles, in case you're a disc-jockey someday;
Music History, as opposed to the History of Music
Western Composers (i.e. classical music)
Country Music (not at all "western" as in classical)
a Passion for Jazz
Rock'n'Roll Timeline
History of Instruments
Some of those are better than others, but whatever has been put online since I made this list is probably better still. Use google! Visit music stores, museums, find outdoor concerts!

History in Songs
Songs with good history tie-ins, sound files and notes.

The 1930s was the period of the first darts 'craze' in Britain. Its popularity spread rapidly from the 1930s onwards. Even the English upper classes, including King George V and Queen Mary, started playing it. It was also a popular sport to be broadcast on the radio. In 1936 for the first time a darts championship was broadcast on the radio by the BBC.

(from The 1930's Family at "Show Me")

Radio Shows:
     BBC wireless history
with samples up through WWII. Includes part of the 1932 Christmas message of King George V, which had been scripted by Rudyard Kipling.

     Superman (1940-1950)
     Old Time Radio Shows

     Marconi Calling (online radio museum)

Sports History
Hickok Sports— extensive histories. (Who knew that shuffleboard painted on the floor of the fellowship hall of the church I went to in the 1960's had such a long and interesting heritage of cruise ships, pubs and kings?)
History of Sports with a slant toward sports-related technology and inventions
Some history of the history of Sport

"It is only in the last twenty years that sport has been appreciated as the stuff of serious history. Sports history grew out of the social history movement of the 1960s that began to look at the past from 'below' by considering the histories of groups, such as women and the working class, that were usually submerged within conventional historical narratives. Although it sometimes struggles for recognition in some of the more traditional echelons of the subject, sports history is now a thriving sub-discipline which produces research that makes important contributions to the social history of Britain and its associated debates and questions." [...and there's more at that page.]
History of the Olympics
You can use google to look up the history of a particular sport or game.

History of Medicine
Here Today, Here Tomorrow: Varieties of Medical Ephemera The online version of an Exhibit (many illustrations, social history, mostly last hundred and some years).

A History of Medicine

Wellcome Trust Library site— the images link is interesting, and "turning the pages" is stunning. You get to look into early medical texts just as they look, and turn the pages.

History of Mathematics
Famous Problems in the History of Mathematics
Wikipedia says...

Timeline, lefthand side of that page, of mathematical and technological beginning with prehistory. Pretty cool.

A reader named Evelyn wrote to say the Timeline link above was broken, and sent this: I found the older link at the internet archive's WayBack machine.

50 Years of Information Technology. Though it's a business, page, that timeline is detailed and very interesting!

There's more on the history of computers, nearer the bottom of this page.

History of Childhood
Clothing in the Cornell Costume Collection

Museum of Childhood, Edinburgh. (T)he first museum in the world to specialise in the history of childhood. There are toys and games of all kinds from many parts of the world, ranging from dolls and teddy bears to train sets and tricycles. Listen to the children chanting multiplication tables in the 1930s schoolroom. Watch the street games of Edinburgh children of the 1950s, and find out how children have been brought up, dressed and educated in decades gone by.

Museum of Childhood, South Kensington, London. The Museum of Childhood is home to one of the world's largest and oldest collections of toys and childhood artefacts. The collection, which dates from the 16th century to the present day includes dolls, teddy bears, toy soldiers, train sets, model cars, puppets, rocking horses, costumes, board games, and some of the first jigsaw puzzles ever made. See some of their toys in motion, with sound. (This is one of the museums that comprises the Victoria and Albert group.)

Museum of Childhood, Toronto. The Museum's purpose is to inspire a greater understanding of all the joys and nuances of childhood, by generating a culture of sharing, learning, and reflection. Since its inception, we have collected over nine thousand antique and contemporary toys, models, childhood artifacts, vintage clothing, and ephemeral items. The collection is diverse in history and culture with a narrative relating each item.

Museum of Childhood, Wakefield, New Hampshire. The museum features an extensive toy and doll collection from the 1800's. The museum also features a small 1890 school house.

Toys and Games
History of Toys and Games, from The History Channel, with a timeline.

A Brief History of Toys, "Greek & Roman children played with balls, clay rattles, clay dolls, hand carts, hobby horses, hoops and spinning tops..." large Hampshire County museum site with wonderful section on toys and games Childhood Playthings "Toys reflect the society that produced them. By showing us the world in miniature, toys offer us a glimpse into the attitudes, lifestyles and technology of times past." (several nice photos)

Wikipedia, with pictures and links

The History of Toys— inventors and history of many specific commercial toys like Slinkies, Etch-a-Sketch, My Little Pony, skateboards...

Games for Unschoolers, including various historical illustrations, instructions, histories and links

Computers and Video Games

Comments and then a link to a display at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, on the history of personal computers, and the extensive Albuquerque connection.

Timeline of Computer Viruses, 1949-2011 (thanks to Mr. Bill Jackson for that link)

Computers and Video Game History— Early arcade machines, the history of home consoles, and the history of the video game.

Video games— it's all history if it was yesterday, where video games are concerned. There is a link there, though, to information on a DVD on the history and development of the games.

Online Displays of the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. The online displays include a timeline, a history of computer chess, history of the internet and "This Day in [computer] History" (plus several other things)

History of Calculators— Timeline, which is just one of the links at this History of Computers site.

That's not all, I just got tired! If you're thinking this doesn't seem like history in school, you're right. Feel free, though, to go to google and look up kings, presidents, dates, wars and political maps and boundaries to your heart's content. Just try not to try to force-feed the info to your children. If you missed all the references to kings, presidents, dates, wars and political maps and boundaries in the links above, you might want to go through some of them again!

No one could make a website, or a book, or a library or a university with all the history you will come across in your life. Frolic! Delve. Catch it in your peripheral vision. Learn it in relation to cooking or automechanics or learning which plants came from other countries when, and why. Why were airplane plants popular with Victorian ladies and with hippies? And the Victorian ladies couldn't have called them airplane plants, so what did they call them? And why did they have them? And what does NASA think of airplane plants? They're #1 on NASA's list! But wait... that's not just history. It involves geography, home decorating, botany and the space program. Don't stop 'til you get enough.

This video is tons of fun, unless "the 'f' word" is a dealbreaker for you. I suppose it's only for families with older kids who have already heard or used that word. There's also an "oh shit," but totally understandable.

I hope you'll forgive him for misspelling "laser" and "psych," because it's wonderful despite that.

It lasts 19 and a half minutes, but you might feel better knowing that he covers history from before matter existed to 2017. I'm surprised it didn't take 25 minutes.

P.S. Comic relief and oddments: The Evolution of Dance
David Bowie before he had ever been to the U.S. (to Sandra before "Dodd")
and speaking of movies... Historical Movies in Chronological Order