Academy Curricular Exchange
Columbia Education Center
Social Studies


TITLE:  5 Themes Awareness of Current Event Issues

AUTHOR:  Joyce O'Connor/Anchorage School District,
         Anchorage, Alaska

GRADE LEVEL:  Appropriate for grades 7-9.

OVERVIEW:  The 5 Themes of Geography is a multi pronged
approach to analyzing and thinking critically about
current events.  This lesson is designed to assist the
student in developing a  global perspective when
viewing local, national and global events.

1.   The student will be able to identify the 5 Themes
     of Geography as being Location, Place,
     Human-Environmental Interaction, Movement and
2.   The student will be able to explain a current
     event from the perspective  of each theme and
     their interrelationship.

MATERIALS:  Newspaper, construction paper, scissors,
atlas, maps, encyclopedias.

1.   Create a 5 Themes Portfolio about a current event
     that involves natural science
2.   Cut out an article from the newspaper that
     includes a natural science event.  Ex: Fishing,
     Animals, Landforms, waterways, etc.
3.   Cut 5 pieces of different colored construction
     paper so that each one is 1 inch shorter than the
     previous one.
4.   The student creates the Portfolio as follows:
     Page 1:  LOCATION.
          The student draws a map where the event
          happened and identifies the relative
          location by labeling at least 10 landmarks
          near the site as well the absolute
          location (longitude and latitude).
     Page 2:  PLACE.
          Student describes the physical
          characteristics of the place that make it
          unique from any other. place.  What does
          it look like? How is it different from
          another place?
          Student describes how man and environment
          effect each other.  What happened? What
          was the consequence?
     Page 4: MOVEMENT:
          Describe in why the people, animals,
          products or ideas move to this area and
          how they intereact with people and
          products from other areas.  What is the
          reason people/products/ideas migrate here?
          What new ideas or products has this
     Page 5: REGIONS:
          Describe how this area or people form a
          unique region.  It may be that the area
          has unique but common language,
          governmental borders, landforms,
          problems, or ethnic issues that make
          them similar.
          Depending on the current event, the
          newspaper article can be pasted on the
          facing page of the Theme which appears to
          be the most emphasized in the article or
          paste it on an additional page as a cover
          to the project.


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