It is difficult to determine when the actual start of WWI began, but many attribute it to the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28th, 1914. The ‘Great War’ lasted many years, claimed millions of lives, and affected millions more. It involved countries from all over the world and included assassinations, political strife, and of course, battles. We’ve gathered the following resources and tools for learning about this period in World History:

Crash Course: World War I

John Green’s channel presents major historical events and condenses them in very engaging videos that last roughly 15 minutes. Each episode is broken up into several different segments, and utilizes historical footage, well designed animated graphics, and even incorporates humor to give insight to each time period. This video is a great guide to WWI, and provides all the essentials, as well as encourages discussion in the comments where you can learn even more info.

World War I in 6 Minutes

A very engaging way of learning about WWI. The video does a great job of using illustrations of maps, sticks figures, and flags to explain many of events of the war. While the illustrations may seem simplistic, they’re accompanied by helpful narration which makes this video a great resource for learning about WWI.

Warfare 1917

This interactive game may not have the most educational value. However, it shows what weapons were available during that time, the technology and tactics used by the Allied and Central Powers and the strategy behind trench warfare. While it may only be a game, it can be a starting point to inspire students to learn more.

*Please note the game may be considered too graphic for a younger audience

New York Times: 100-Year Legacy of World War I

If you have found the other resources interesting and want to learn all you can about WWI, the New York Times is your next stop. They have done an outstanding job of aggregating many resources including restoring their archives so you can interact with actual news sources from the time period. Not only does the Times review the events that took place but also revisit many of the historic sites today and examines how the war influenced specific people and countries.

Learn more about the Versailles Treaty and how the end of World War I heavily influenced World War II in this activity from the K12 curriculum:

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