Oregon Trail Activities: Simulation, Interactive Game & Journaling Project

Created ByMister Harms

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PDF (11 MB|17 pages)
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  1. This bundle contains every single American History resources from the Mister Harms store! You're getting every American History resource but saving BIG with a whopping 25% OFF all current resources. Once the bundle is yours, you will then get 100% off all future products added to the bundle! Buying
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Learning Objective

Students will experience the Oregon Trail in an engaging way by working in wagon teams to safely arrive in Oregon Country. Students will also learn how to budget, plan, and work together as they learn the history of this trail out west!


Oregon Trail here we come! This interactive activity about westward expansion gives students a glimpse of what life was like on the trail and it is definitely #oneofmyfavorites! By rolling dice, keeping track of supplies, and following a map, students will get to learn about this historical event in an enjoyable way. Grouped into wagon trains, students must depend on teamwork to successfully finish the trail. This simulation is a nice complement to your existing Oregon Trail or Westward Expansion unit. It's a game, simulation, and an educational experience all in one. Come travel the Oregon Trail with this student centered lesson. It's the highlight of the year for my students as they talk about this simulation for years to come. Enjoy this engaging way to travel the trail! If you want to learn more about this resource, check out my blog post and how I use this lesson to create a fantastic experience for my students!

This resource is also a part of my Early American History Bundle! Save more than 25% on this resource and others by purchasing the discounted bundle!

Included in this Lesson:

  • Full teacher directions to help you facilitate the simulation
  • Full student directions
  • Mileage chart explaining the distances between each major site
  • Map of the original Oregon Trail
  • Price list for shopping at the General Store
  • Inventory worksheets for students to keep track of supplies, food, etc.
  • Full movement guide explaining student outcome based upon the dice being rolled.
  • Certificate of accomplishment
  • Included Google Drive Version. These pages are editable for your customization.
  • And so much the preview to see it all!

Additional Visual Presentation

Teachers have been asking for an additional visual presentation, and now it's here! OREGON TRAIL SIMULATION PRESENTATION: Make sure to check out the BRAND NEW companion PowerPoint presentation to use along side this Oregon Trail simulation - a definite "must-have." Think of this companion presentation as a visual guide through the entire Oregon Trail. The presentation includes over 140 slides of historical pictures of every site, brief informative summaries about each stop, distances to the next place on the trail, emigrant descriptions of various dangers, interactive dice, and so much more. It is loaded with primary source visuals and emigrant descriptions of the trail. No need to scour the internet for images and information on each site. I truly don't know how I traveled the trail before this! Check it out!

Thank You!

Thanks so much for stopping by! It's great to meet you! I hope this resource adds value to your classroom. If you have time, I'd love for you to leave a rating on this product with your awesome feedback, and make sure to follow Mister Harms for important updates and savings! I would also love to see how you've incorporated this product into your classroom! Feel free to post a photo of this resource in action and tag @misterharms so I can meet you!

  • "This activity was so much fun and very organized. The students learned a lot." - Margaret - ★★★★★
  • "This is such a fun activity! My students loved it!" - Nora - ★★★★★
  • "LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! This product is fantastic! All of the research and labor is done for you...Overall, well worth the money!!!" - 422History - ★★★★★
  • "This is a great resource that my students love! I definitely recommend purchasing the Simulation Presentation that goes along with this resource. Both resources together make for an interactive lesson where students learn a wide variety of information about the Oregon Trail." - Elise - ★★★★★

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Oregon Trail Presentation: A visual guide through the Oregon Trail

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Total Pages
17 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
2 Weeks
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Use appropriate tools strategically. Mathematically proficient students consider the available tools when solving a mathematical problem. These tools might include pencil and paper, concrete models, a ruler, a protractor, a calculator, a spreadsheet, a computer algebra system, a statistical package, or dynamic geometry software. Proficient students are sufficiently familiar with tools appropriate for their grade or course to make sound decisions about when each of these tools might be helpful, recognizing both the insight to be gained and their limitations. For example, mathematically proficient high school students analyze graphs of functions and solutions generated using a graphing calculator. They detect possible errors by strategically using estimation and other mathematical knowledge. When making mathematical models, they know that technology can enable them to visualize the results of varying assumptions, explore consequences, and compare predictions with data. Mathematically proficient students at various grade levels are able to identify relevant external mathematical resources, such as digital content located on a website, and use them to pose or solve problems. They are able to use technological tools to explore and deepen their understanding of concepts.
Model with mathematics. Mathematically proficient students can apply the mathematics they know to solve problems arising in everyday life, society, and the workplace. In early grades, this might be as simple as writing an addition equation to describe a situation. In middle grades, a student might apply proportional reasoning to plan a school event or analyze a problem in the community. By high school, a student might use geometry to solve a design problem or use a function to describe how one quantity of interest depends on another. Mathematically proficient students who can apply what they know are comfortable making assumptions and approximations to simplify a complicated situation, realizing that these may need revision later. They are able to identify important quantities in a practical situation and map their relationships using such tools as diagrams, two-way tables, graphs, flowcharts and formulas. They can analyze those relationships mathematically to draw conclusions. They routinely interpret their mathematical results in the context of the situation and reflect on whether the results make sense, possibly improving the model if it has not served its purpose.
Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others. Mathematically proficient students understand and use stated assumptions, definitions, and previously established results in constructing arguments. They make conjectures and build a logical progression of statements to explore the truth of their conjectures. They are able to analyze situations by breaking them into cases, and can recognize and use counterexamples. They justify their conclusions, communicate them to others, and respond to the arguments of others. They reason inductively about data, making plausible arguments that take into account the context from which the data arose. Mathematically proficient students are also able to compare the effectiveness of two plausible arguments, distinguish correct logic or reasoning from that which is flawed, and-if there is a flaw in an argument-explain what it is. Elementary students can construct arguments using concrete referents such as objects, drawings, diagrams, and actions. Such arguments can make sense and be correct, even though they are not generalized or made formal until later grades. Later, students learn to determine domains to which an argument applies. Students at all grades can listen or read the arguments of others, decide whether they make sense, and ask useful questions to clarify or improve the arguments.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. Mathematically proficient students start by explaining to themselves the meaning of a problem and looking for entry points to its solution. They analyze givens, constraints, relationships, and goals. They make conjectures about the form and meaning of the solution and plan a solution pathway rather than simply jumping into a solution attempt. They consider analogous problems, and try special cases and simpler forms of the original problem in order to gain insight into its solution. They monitor and evaluate their progress and change course if necessary. Older students might, depending on the context of the problem, transform algebraic expressions or change the viewing window on their graphing calculator to get the information they need. Mathematically proficient students can explain correspondences between equations, verbal descriptions, tables, and graphs or draw diagrams of important features and relationships, graph data, and search for regularity or trends. Younger students might rely on using concrete objects or pictures to help conceptualize and solve a problem. Mathematically proficient students check their answers to problems using a different method, and they continually ask themselves, "Does this make sense?" They can understand the approaches of others to solving complex problems and identify correspondences between different approaches.
Write routinely over extended time frames (time for reflection and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.


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