September 18, 2015
By Amanda Clarkson

Lesson plan

Finding the Five Themes of Geography

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Students will be able to give examples of the five themes of geography.

(5 minutes)
  • Ask students to share about the five themes of geography that they've been learning about.
  • Remind students of the definition of each of these five themes: LocationMeaning the longitude and latitude of a place, or where a place is located in relation to another place, PlaceMeaning characteristics created by humans such as languages, buildings, food, and transportation as well as physical characteristics such as animals, plants, and landforms, RegionMeaning an area that has certain characteristics in common, MovementMeaning how people and ideas get from one place to another, and Human-environment interactionMeaning how humans and the environment affect one another.
(5 minutes)
  • Explain that students will be going on a scavenger hunt around the school to find examples of each of the five themes of geography.
  • Hand out the Finding the Five Themes worksheet.
  • Give students an example such as as iconic hill nearby being categorized under place.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell students that before going on the scavenger hunt around the school, they will practise by finding examples of the five themes right in their own classroom.
  • Allow students to work with partners or small groups to find examples of the five themes around the classroom. Remind students to give some kind of justification of why that object or idea would belong in the given category.
  • After a few minutes, have students share their ideas with the class. Make sure students are referring back to the definitions of the five themes of geography in order to help them justify why an object or idea would belong in a certain category.
(20 minutes)
  • Have students bring their worksheets and a pencil with them.
  • Lead the class slowly around different parts of the school, giving students time to write down examples that they see.
  • Make sure students are quiet during this activity as they should be working independently!
  • Enrichment: Challenge these students to find examples that fit in multiple categories. Students should be able to explain how these examples show the different themes of geography.
  • Support: Have some examples written on the worksheet for students before having them start the scavenger hunt. It may also be helpful to have the definitions of each category written on top of the worksheet.
(5 minutes)
  • Use the scavenger hunt worksheet to determine if students were able to find accurate examples of each of the five themes. You may need to have students explain, either verbally or written, why they believe certain objects or ideas belong in the given category.
(10 minutes)
  • Have several students share their examples for each of the five themes. Students should justify their reasoning.
  • Challenge students to continue to find examples of the five themes of geography on their ride home from school today!

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