Gameschoolers, get ready because I am about to tell you about an excellent history game for learning and fun. But first, the backstory.
As a school psychologist and homeschool mom, I am a huge fan of interest and play-based learning. If I’ve learned anything in over 8-years of homeschooling, it’s that interest-based learning is where the magic happens. It just makes sense- if you’re interested in a topic, you’re going to retain more information on that subject.
And the most fun form of interest-based learning, in my humble opinion, is gameschooling. If you’ve been hanging out with us for any length of time, you already know we are a family of gameschoolers. We love to incorporate games into every area of our homeschool and that includes history. That said, it can be challenging to find history games that work for homeschool families. Allow me to explain…
The Best History Game For Learning And Fun
*Disclosure: I received Trekking Through History at no cost and was compensated for my time in writing this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own and I only choose to review products and resources that I would use with my own family and those that I believe other families will enjoy. Our family has enjoyed Underdog Games’ games (Trekking the National Parks and Trekking the World) and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to check out Trekking Through History.
Learning History Through Play
There are a ton of fantastic games on the market today across a wide range of subject areas and genres, however, I’ve struggled to find accessible history games for homeschoolers. When I say accessible, I am talking about games that are easy to explain, fun to play, have a manageable play time, and appealing to school-age kiddos. If you’re a gamer like me, you know that there are plenty of history games available, however, they tend to be trivia-type decks or pretty heavy/involved games that work best for big-time gamers.
My boys are big-time gamers and they have no trouble getting lost in a complicated history game. One of my favorite history-related gameschool success stories includes the game Memoir ’44. Memoir ’44 is a fairly complex game that is based on WWII battles. My boys have learned a ton from playing this game, and its many expansions, together. My father-in-law has been so impressed with their WWII knowledge.
But the more complex history games do not appeal to all homeschoolers. My daughter, for example, doesn’t enjoy heavy/complex games. She prefers lighter games; games that are easy to understand, fun to play, and with a manageable length of gameplay. She would much prefer a quick round of trivia with a Professor Noggin deck than an afternoon spent playing Memoir ’44.
For years, I’ve wanted a history game that is more engaging than a trivia deck, but not as complex as many of the history games on the market today. I’ve been searching for the Goldilocks of history games; a game that appeals to a variety of gamers, is easy to learn, fun to play, and manageable in length.
I’m happy to share that we’ve found a game that is easy to learn, fun to play, and can be played with new gameschoolers and lifelong gamers. Allow me to introduce you to Trekking Through History.
Gameschooling In Your Homeschool
Gameschooling is the intersection of play-based learning and homeschooling. Put simply, gameschooling is interest-based learning at its best. And, as I mentioned earlier, when children and teens are engaged and interested in a topic, as they are when they play, they naturally retain more information about that topic.
That’s why my boys can leave me in the dust when it comes to WWII trivia, even though I earned an A in AP US History. Yes, I studied WWII through textbooks, lectures, and documentaries, but this information was served to me. I didn’t seek it out myself. I didn’t get lost in WWII-related play and discussions with a sibling.
Interest-based learning trumps traditional educational methods. And that’s why gameschooling can be a homeschool game changer.
The Best History Game For Learning And Fun
Trekking Through History is the latest game from Underdog Games. Our family owns and loves Underdog Games’ other games, Trekking the National Parks and Trekking the World. So, when I was offered the chance to review Trekking Through History, I jumped at the chance.
My kids have learned a ton while playing Trekking the National Parks and Trekking the World. We paired the former with Ken Burns’ The National Parks: America’s Best Idea series before our trip to Acadia National Park last fall.
And we played a bajillion rounds of Trekking the World in preparation for the last Olympics. Games are geography magic makers, homeschool friends!
So, I already knew that our family enjoys and learns from Underdog Games. I was not at all surprised when Trekking Through History was a hit over here!
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Trekking Through History In Your Homeschool
Trekking Through History is exactly what I’ve been looking for when it comes to history games. As I mentioned, my boys love complex heavy-hitter board games and my daughter is the opposite. Trekking Through History was a win for all three of my kiddos! It’s the Goldilocks of history games!
Trekking Through History is a perfect game for learning history in your homeschool because:
- It is easy to learn (the instruction book is easy to understand with tons of visuals and includes a link to a video tutorial)
- Trekking Through History is fun to play
- This game appeals to a variety of ages
- Can be played with 2-4 players
- Gameplay is approximately 30-45 minutes
Trekking Through History is a time-travel board game featuring gorgeous artwork and oodles of historical facts and is perfect for homeschool learning. The game was created by Underdog Games and a team of experts, including historians, professors, and librarians. The game includes 108 noteworthy historical events and remarkable historic figures from around the globe.
Players get to travel through time just like Marty McFly, earning victory points along the way. In this game, players set out on a 3-day journey through history. The game is played over three rounds; each round represents 12 hours of one day.
Each player has a pocket watch place keeper and each round’s time is tracked via a time clock:
Each day, players select an itinerary. (The game includes 24 unique itineraries to keep the game challenging.)
As they trek, players collect history cards, preferably in chronological order. (There are over 100 history cards, offering lots of learning opportunities!)
The front of each card is a colorful work of art with a date, art, icons related to the experience, and a brief description.
On the reverse side of each history card, there is a story about the historical event or figure, as seen here:
Players add earned experience tokens to their itinerary. The player with the most victory points at the end of the third day/round is the winner.
Trekking Through History is a beautifully illustrated educational history game that is perfect for homeschool learning!
This is the third “trekking” game from Underdog Games that our family has enjoyed. I am happy to add it to our game closet and I am certain we will be playing often this homeschool year!
Do you want to learn more about incorporating interest-based learning and gameschooling into your history routine?
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