Hands-On Activities for Studying the American Revolution

May 13, 2020

Jeannette Tuionetoa

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The American Revolution was the defining period of American colonies’ breaking away from Great Britain’s rule. These hands-on activities for studying the American Revolution will help your kids learn about it.

Hands-On Activities for Studying the American Revolution


Can you imagine how these times were? Groups were sent from the Queen to gain power over other European nations, yet the people rebel against you.

On the other hand, most colonists wanted freedom, prosperity, and independence. This was a pivotal time in world history. Most of us in America are here because of this very revolution.

What started the American Revolution?

Once the groups arrived in the Americas, the relationship between the American colonies and Great Britain became strained by taxes imposed on them. The rebellion began with peaceful protests. Colonists longed for independence and resented the taxes from the British rule.

Here are a few specific events and situations that led up to the revolution:

The Stamp Act of 1765, taxed colonies to raise revenue for Great Britain.

A group of people (a secret society) called the Sons of Liberty set out to protect the rights of the American colonists.

Protests resulted in the Boston Massacre in 1770. Four colonists were shot by British troops while protesting.

The Boston Tea Party in 1773, was a famous colony protest against taxes as they dumped 90,000 pounds worth of tea off of British ships in the Boston Harbor.

In 1776, the United States signed the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain (442 days after the war had already begun).

The war actually began in April 19, 1775. It’s first shot fired is still know today as the ‘’shot heard around the world”.

From here, the war broke out. We all know how the war ends. Eight years later, 1783, the American colonies gain their independence. We understand this and we celebrate the 4th of July because of it every year.

However, there may be a few things we don’t know about the American Revolution and what led to our independence that kids may find quite interesting. 

Here are a few things about the American Revolution that you may want to share with your kids. It will shed some light on what happened during the period, besides battles and bloodshed.

Not all the colonists wanted to rebel against Great Britain or even want to go to war. Some didn’t want to take sides at all, called “fence-sitters” and then those who were loyal to Britain and were named the “loyalists.”

Likewise, not all British supported the war against the Americans. They were called the “Whig” faction.

The British were called the “Red coats” or “devils.” (The latter being little harsh, in my opinion.)

The American Commander in Chief during this time was George Washington.

The African-American slaves served on both sides of the war, up to 25,000 of them. George Washington raised up a small number of African-American-only units that were war heroes. In opposition, the British offered freedom to slaves who escaped their masters and serve don’t heir side as loyalists.

In the midst of the craziness of the war, many slaves were able to escape slavery altogether.

Although about 25, 000 American soldiers/patriots died during the American Revolutionary War, most didn’t die from actual battle but from unsanitary prisoner of warships.

1/3 of the British troops were German. France and Spain (Spain although “secretly”) joined the Americans in support of their fight for freedom against Great Britain.

These resources and tools will help you to teach the American Revolution:

FREE Battles of the American Revolution Copywork

American Revolution Copywork About Key Battles text with image of a statue

American Revolution Unit Study and Lapbook 1775 – 1783 | Tina’s Dynamic Homeschool Plus

The American Revolution 1775-1783

FREE American Revolutionary War Pack | 3 Dinosaurs

American Revolution FREE Handouts | Student Handouts

Worksheets and Answer Key – American Revolution (FREE) | Easy Teacher Worksheets

American Revolution FREE Worksheets & Facts | kidskonnect

FREE Facts and Printables About the American Revolution | Thought.co

FREE American Revolution Guided Drawing

American Revolution Guided Drawing Activity Free Download text with image of George Washington

Road to the American Revolution | Janae Van Orman – The Sharpened Pencil

Causes of the American Revolution & Revolutionary War Battles–DISTANCE LEARNING | Splash! Publications

American Revolution – Revolutionary War Causes – Revolutionary War |  Shelly Rees

100 Ways To Study The American Revolution In Your Homeschool | Table Life Blog

100 Ways to Study the American Revolution in Your Homeschool

American Revolution Word Wall Terms | Social Studies Success

Study American Revolution Unit | Our Journey Westward

War is Brewing Revolutionary War Unit | 123 Homeschool 4 Me

American Revolution Printables (These will fill up your whole unit! From Bingo games, writing prompts to art history) | Write Bonnie Rose

Declaration of Independence Terminology Copywork

American Revolution printables

Leaders of the American Revolution Notebooking Journal

Writing Prompts from History American Revolution


There is no better way to learn history than with activities to keep kids engaged. Although they need t know it, history can get quite dull to some kids.

With hands-on activities, kids will be motivated to learn more and more about this very important period in America’s history.

Grab these hands-on activities for studying the American Revolution in your homeschool:

STEM Engineering Challenge American Revolution | Gretchen Hilley

American Revolution Activities – The Revolutionary War | The Fun Factory

Board Game Project Activity Fun – American Revolution | Instructomania with Mr and Mrs P

American Revolution Activity: George Washington, US Constitution | Science Spot

Escape From King George! American Revolution Escape Room | Happy Teacher Resources

AMERICAN REVOLUTION ACTIVITY: Founding Fathers—80 Mix-&-Match Templates | GravoisFare

Hands-On Fun at The American Revolution Museum at Yorktown | Mom’s Magical Miles

American Revolution Games: Battle Blitz and Liberty at Last, Plus Timeline! | Brain Power Boy

Fun Hands-on Activities for Teaching the Revolutionary War | Classroom

American Revolution: Minutemen Activity | His Mercy is New

Recipes from Revolutionary War for Children: Honey-Jumble Cookies | The Natural Homeschool

American Revolution Hands-On Activities for Middle School | Education Possible

In 1776 and American Revolution Sensory Bin | 3 Dinosaur

Role Playing with the American Revolution (FREEBIES Included) | Young Teacher Love

7 American Revolution Activities | Vestal’s 21st Century Classroom

These videos really help kids get an idea of the American Revolution’s big picture:

American Revolution for Kids – Facts on the Revolutionary War | Hey! Guess What

The American Revolution – OverSimplified (Part 1) | OverSimplified

5 Revolutionary War Videos for Kids | The Clever Teacher

Tea, Taxes, and The American Revolution: Crash Course World History | Crash Course

Hands-On Activities for Studying the American Revolution


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