Lesson 9: People and the Environment

Getting Started

Today you will explore ways that people in the various regions relate to their environments. As people inhabit a region, they change the geography of the land in order to meet their needs and to make their lives easier.

Stuff You Need

  • Smart About the Fifty States: A Class Report by Jon Buller* (Activity 3 - Option 2)
  • colored pencils or markers

* - denotes an optional material that may or may not be needed

Ideas to Think About

  • What relationships exist between living things and their environment?
  • How do population growth, movement, and technological advancements affect the environment?

Things to Know

  • People change the environment in order to meet their needs.
  • Transportation and communication advancements often change the geography of the land.


  • Describe ways people have adapted to and modified their environment in the United States, past and present. (SS)
  • Identify reasons why people have adapted to and modified their environment, past and present, such as the use of natural resources to meet basic needs. (SS)
  • Analyze the consequences of human modification of the environment, past and present. (SS)

Introducing the Lesson

Tell your child that today he will examine ways that people living in the United States have modified their environment. Ask your child to brainstorm ways people modify their environments.