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True Or False History




  • Social Studies
  • History
  • All Subjects


  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12

Brief Description

In Rewriting History, students list facts as a review and then alter some of them so that other players can determine what items are true and which are false. (See Variations section for ways to adapt this game to subjects other than social studies or history.)



  • list important facts from a unit of study.
  • identify true and false statements.
  • use research skills.
  • keep score fairly and accurately.


game, true, false, fact

Materials Needed

  • textbook, notes, and other resources from a unit of study
  • paper and pencils
  • chalkboard and chalk

Lesson Plan

We have all wanted to rewrite history at some time, and in this game, students finally have their chance! Before you play, you will need at least one example of three factual statements that relate to a current or recent unit of study that you want to review. Change a portion of one statement so that it is actually false. Here is an example from the life of Abraham Lincoln:

  • A law partner once compared Abraham Lincoln's ambition to a "little engine that knew no rest." (True)
  • Lincoln was a captain in the Black Hawk War, served for eight years in the state legislature of Illinois, and was a distinguished lawyer before becoming president. (True)
  • President Lincoln believed that secession was legal, but he was willing to use force to protect the Union. (False -- Lincoln thought secession was illegal.)

Divide students into small groups of about three members each. They may have access to their text and notes from the unit. Write your three sample statements on the board, and inform the students that one of those statements is not true. Instruct the students to work quietly in their groups to prove the statements true or false and find the one that is "rewritten" history. They may discuss the material only with members of their groups, and they may use their notes and information from the unit.

When an appropriate amount of time has passed, have the student groups vote for the statement they believe is not true. Ask for a show of hands for each statement. Then have a group that has selected the correct statement explain why it is false. Groups that chose this statement receive one point.

Now have the students write their own statements of fact about the unit. You may have them create more sentences, but every group will need at least three. When they have finished, invite one group to write three statements about the unit work on the board. One of the three should be "rewritten" by the students to make it false. Give the groups time to evaluate these new statements. Take another vote and discuss the outcome. The group that created the statements can explain why one statement is false. If all of its statements are correctly written and explained, this group receives two points. All teams that have identified the false statement get one point, and play continues. Monitor this game closely to be sure that the students' statements are clearly (and accurately) true or false.

This game can work for any subject matter.

  • In math class, students might put three problems on the board with answers, and their peers can work out the practice to find the one problem with an incorrect answer.
  • Language arts students might write statements about a novel they are reading as a group or use this game format as an exercise in writing fact and opinion statements. Virtually any subject, not just history, can be "rewritten"!


    The team with the most points when time is up is deemed the winner.

    Lesson Plan Source

    Education World

    Submitted By

    Cara Bafile

    National Standards

    All standards.

    SOCIAL SCIENCES: Economics
    All standards.

    SOCIAL SCIENCES: Geography
    All standards.

    All standards.

    SOCIAL SCIENCES: World History
    All standards.

    Find more great learning games in Education World's Learning Games Archive.