With the infinite knowledge on the internet, you can learn almost anything for free. This really was a lifesaver as my kids struggled through their history courses in Mexico. It was their first time to learn about the guerra de castas, the Mayan chiefdoms, and much more. We turned to YouTube. There are plenty of marvelous teacher channels that cover a full range of Social Studies topics: from geography, to economics, government, culture and history. Whether you are a history buff or helping someone with homework, these 20 Social Studies YouTube channels will entertain, teach, and delight you.
Obviously we can’t even make a list of Social Studies YouTube channels without mentioning a couple of the big ones:
Aside from the famous Social Studies YouTube channels, there are loads of other educators teaching and reviewing history and government and economics and culture! Here are some of our favorites.
Our Favorite Social Studies YouTube Channels
Horrible Histories: main European and US history, told in a funny way that focuses on the gore and vulgarity of history (without being gory or vulgar)
Crash Course videos are 10-15 minutes long, and quickly cover topics from US History to World History (plus literature, science, and more!). This might be my favorite history youtube channel for high school students just because the brothers that produce it are so entertaining. There is also a Crash Course Kids channel that is mainly science.
Laughing Historically: really entertaining videos, and several have lessons in political science. I really enjoyed the electoral college and blue/red states explained! (definitely for teens and above)
Shmoop: I am linking to their US History videos, but they have lots of channels, including one with biographies!
John D Ruddy has lots of World History doodled videos about everything from the world wars, to revolutions, to Irish history. He does speak quite fast, so I would use this as a review to what they’ve already learned (instead of as an introduction).
Mr Betts Class is AMAZING. He takes popular songs and makes parodies related to a theme in US history. They are so funny and silly and educational at the same time.
PBS Presidents Everything you need to know about each President of the US, in just 60 seconds!
Smart Songs: hip-hop/rap style music that inspires learning in History, Social Studies, Geography, and Science.
If you are just interested in World War 1, go to BBC! They have fascinating short videos about different aspects.
History for Kids: has various playlists useful for Social Studies teachers. There are videos on “What Happened this Day in History?“, a lot of great content on Black History, biographies of US presidents, videos for Women’s History Month, and other educational material about leadership and bullying. Here’s a sample:
HistoryTeachers: music videos that cover mainly world history. They aim to make teaching history, fun!
Liberty’s Kids: Cartoon episodes of different scenes in US History from the War for Independence
Brain Bubble TV: very short films (1 minute) about fun facts in US History.
Knowledge Hub: videos about a slew of topics, from Vikings, Henry Ford, Stalin, to the Depression. They scenes are very simply drawn, mixed with actual photos from the era.
Mr. Zoller’s Social Studies Social Studies YouTube Channel: I like that these videos are organized by topics, so it’s easy to find what you are looking for!
Epic History! is another great channel for high schoolers, for both US and World History. So much information packed in their videos.
Hip Hughes has organized his videos into different channels. You will find US History, World History, US Gov’t and Politics, the Constitution, Presidential Elections, the Bill of Rights, and Current Events. Really helpful for studying!
Have I missed any of your favorite Social Studies YouTube channels? What have your kids watched and learned? Leave more recommendations in the comments!