TimelineJS is a tool that organizes content based on a timeline of events. This is very useful for dealing with a history of events and attaching interactive photos and descriptions of each notable step in the history of a larger theme to gain context. This free tool creates professional results, having been used by news sites such as Time and CNN. A timeline can serve as a valuable resource in explaining the history around a subject in the classroom. A TimelineJS of Nelson Mandela’s life published by Time can be found here for reference. A timeline history of women in computing is embedded at the bottom of this article. This tool prompts interaction more than a plain document or piece of text and might be useful in getting students to engage with the content.
Timelines are designed to be easy to create and do not require web design experience. This makes it perfect for both student projects and materials that faculty create. Some examples of potential timelines:
- A timeline of events to show the historical context of a modern day issue or event
- A timeline of the change in a technology, the environment or an element of society
- A senior student’s ePortfolio built as a timeline, documenting their growth through their college career
- A course syllabus that contains an interactive timeline of the semester
TimelineJS documents the process for creating your own timeline here. This can be done almost entirely with Google Sheets and can be shared in a way that allows you to embed your sheet in a Canvas page or other website. For embedding your content in a Canvas page, similar instructions to other services can be followed with any iframe code here.