Title: Your Town in Past, Present, and Future
Grade Level: 3-5
Source: National Geographic

Curriculum Materials


  • Research an environmental issue concerning their town or region;
  • Make a class list describing the different facets of this environmental problem;
  • Draw two pictures of their town in fifty years, one with the environmental problem fixed and one with the problem worsened;
  • Discuss how studying this problem might contribute to its solution; and
  • Devise a plan to educate the community about the environmental issue.


  • Computer with Internet access
  • Pictures of Bodie, California
  • Drawing materials

This lesson illustrates one way that the study of geography can be applied to planning for the future. Students will research an environmental issue that affects their town or region, draw pictures assuming two possible outcomes for the problem in fifty years (one negative and one positive), and create a plan to educate the community about this issue.

This activity encourages students to think not only about their own town as it is today, but how it could be in both positive and negative scenarios, and to take a closer look at their surroundings.

State Framework relevance:in progress