Should LBJ run for a second term? How might President Lincoln respond to the situation at Ft. Sumter? What can President Jefferson do about the Port of New Orleans?

Your students will take on the job of advising the president through historical events and challenges by talking to people in and around the White House. Consult with confidants within the White House and use evidence-based reasoning to provide a presidential briefing.

Can your students advise Presidents Jefferson, Lincoln, and Johnson on landmark events and important historical decisions that defined their presidencies? 

In Brief the Chief, your students will:

  • Select from three presidencies: Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Choose from 6 historical challenges
  • Interview stakeholders and collect notes
  • Make an informed position and present it for consideration
  • Discover the historical outcomes of each challenge

For English Language Learners: This game offers a support tool, Spanish translation, voiceover, and glossary.

Made in partnership with The White House Historical Association.


  • Explain the structure, functions, and processes of the executive branch of government
  • Compare and contrast historical, cultural, economic, and political perspectives
  • Question and use inquiry to construct arguments, using evidence from multiple sources

Discover an additional resource to engage with Brief the Chief

Dr. Matthew Costello, Chief Education Officer for the White House Historical Association, is joined by two real-life presidential advisors to discuss their time working in the White House.

Hear from Anita McBride, who previously served as an assistant to President George W. Bush and chief of staff to First Lady Laura Bush, and Tina Tchen, who previously served as an assistant to President Barack Obama and chief of staff to First Lady Michelle Obama. Anita and Tina take questions from middle school students and discuss their time working in the White House and public service as a whole. 

This Game is included in the following units:

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