Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

The Best Tools For Making Online Timelines


Making timelines can be a useful learning activity for all students, including English Language Learners. I actually think students working in small groups to create a big timeline poster is a better overall learning experience. However, I can see the development of online timelines could be a good project in some situations — for example, in sharing information with others around the world working in “sister classes.”

There are many online timeline tools out there. But I’ve only found a few that are easily accessible to English Language Learners and non-tech-savvy students and teachers, free, and allow users to grab images off the web to add to their final product.

My picks for The Best Tools For Making Online Timelines are:


TimeToast (thanks to Denise Krebs for the tip)

I wrote about Capzles about a year ago, and said it looked like a neat tool to make timelines, but since they didn’t allow you to grab images off the Web I didn’t think it was particularly useful for my students.  I just went back to visit the Capzles site, and was pleased to find that they had added that ability — along with other features.  Because of these changes, I’ve added Capzles to this list.

Timeglider lets you make online timelines. It looks pretty good, but you can only make five timelines on a free account.

When In Time is a new timeline creator that looks very easy to use.

Time Rime is a timeline maker that has been around for awhile, but seems to have made some nice improvements.

Hstry is a nice new online too for creating timelines. Richard Byrne just wrote a post about it, and I’d suggest just you visit his blog to learn more. As he points out, one of the particularly nice features of this free tool is that teachers can create virtual classrooms for their students.(NOTE:Hstry rebranded as Sutori and turned themselves into more of a presentation tool.  It seems nice, and I’m adding it to The Best Ways To Create Online Slideshows but, unless I’m missing something, it appears that they lost the ability to easily create timelines in the process.  I might just be missing something, though.)

Six Tools for Creating Online Timelines – A Comparison Chart is from Richard Byrne.

Knightlab Timeline (thanks to Anthippi Harou for the tip)

Our Story

It’s about time: a round-up of time-lining tools is from Joyce Valenza.

The History Project is a new free online tool for creating timelines, and its partially funded by The New York Times.

It’s very easy to use, with web and social media search capability built into the site when you are creating a timeline. In addition to letting you create a sequential list including images and videos, and also shows the events on a map. Best of all, in my opinion, you can easily record your own audio thoughts for each event.  (NOTE: They’ve changed their name to Enwoven).

Time.Graphics looks like an easy (and free) online tool for creating timelines.It takes seconds to register, and it has a sophisticated, yet simple, interface, and you can easily add multi-media features.

eStory is a new free online timeline-making tool. It’s a quick-and-easy registration process, has a very intuitive interface, and the timelines themselves are attractive.  And, it’s free.

If you found this list helpful, you might want to see the other over-ninety ones, too.

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.


  1. Nice post. Timelines are becoming a popular way to visualize data and events on the internet.

    See as a tool for chronicling and sharing events with trusted groups like classmates, family and friends.


  2. I also like timetoast, but have used both xtimeline and timetoast with students.

  3. Here are links to a few others:

    Top 10 Sites for Creating Timelines by David Kapuler:

    and one I’ve used for a long time:

  4. I’ve used Timerime with my students.

    I liked the look and ease of use of Dipity, but I found that certain events disappeared from view as I zoomed in or out. I’m not sure if others have had that problem.

  5. Hey Larry, I just reviewed my top 10 as well. Hopefully, this will be a nice resource for our readers…

    It is on Technology & Learning’s online list as well.

    Keep up the great work!!

  6. This is a great list. I also like as you can create photobooks from them as well. I think it’s a small company because they’re also really nice and responsive if you have troubles with anything.

  7. Hi, do you know of an online timeline that’s downloadable to a DVD? I’d like to be able to keep a copy for myself. I think the is one of these but would like a site that looks nicer. Tiki-toki looks great but i think it’s purely online.

  8. Hi Larry,

    There’s a Russell Stannard video on xtimeline here:

    I guess that’s the one to which you were pointing at:

  9. Does anyone know where my students (who are under 13) can make a digital timeline without using an email address to register? You have to be 13 for a lot of these.

  10. Larry, I am a 70-something woman who, with my husband, want to make a timeline of our 50-year marriage on a simple-to-use site. No need for web images, just an easy way to put each year, enter events, and be able to easily add to it later. Before I register with all these sites in order to see how they work, which one would you suggest? Many thanks, Judy White in Ohio

  11. Couldn’t find what I needed so I built a timeline tool for a project a while back and made it available to anyone. It doesn’t require anything to use it. Even if saving for later access, you can provide any username – no email needed.

    If helpful, you can find it here:

    If skilled in some html at all, you can insert virtually anything (picture, videos, links, etc.) into the events. Hope it’s helpful.

  12. thanks for the resources to improve my differentation

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