The Five Themes of Geography
The Five Themes of Geography
The Five Themes of
By Mr. Worm
Why Geography is important
In a tiny Native American fishing village, a small
group gathered around a man who began to draw in
the sand. They watched closely as Samuel de
Champlain, a French explorer, drew a sweeping line
on the ground. The line represented the coastline
where they stood. The local chief drew additional
lines. A young man added piles of rocks to
represent the village and nearby settlements. When
they were done, they had an informal map of the
Champlain and the Native Americans he
met on Cape Ann in Massachusetts in the 1600s did
not speak the same language. Yet, they both
understood the basic language of geography.
• Describes where places are on earth.
• Types of Location:
– ABSOLUTE: exact location on earth (fixed)
• Does not change
– Grid System
– RELATIVE: compared to other places (variable)
• Changes dependent upon where you’re
comparing it to.
Let’s Study Our Location!
1. What is Sandy’s absolute location (Longitude and
2. What is Union Middle School’s
relative location to the South
Towne Mall in Sandy?
Physical Differences and Human Differences
• Physical differences, • Human differences,
are things that have
include things that
changed due to
occur naturally, such
people, such as
as mountains, rivers,
roads and buildings,
type of soil, wildlife,
how people live and
Drawing your Place
On your white board, draw Utah and
fill it in with symbols which represent your
state and what makes your state unique.
Place in early America
• The relationship between people and their
– Adaptation is how people change (clothing
and housing) because of the environment
– Modification is how the environment has been
changed by people.
– Dependence is how people depend on the
• Within your group brainstorm about how humans
have changed and altered the environment around
them. Come up with three positive human impacts
and three negative human impacts. Everyone in the
group needs to be participating and be able to
answer questions if called upon
• Regions are areas or a group of places that can be
grouped together by a set of physical or cultural
characteristics that are special to that region.
– Physical refers to mountains,
deserts, vegetation, and climates.
– Cultural refers to history, religion,
• How do you think people in the united states
characterize your region (Utah)?
• Blue’s Clues airs at 3:00 pm in Michigan. In Utah
Blue’s Clues airs at 5:00 pm. This is an example of
what type of region?
• What was the major difference between the Northern
Colonies and the Southern Colonies?
• Movement includes the movement of people,
goods, and communications (the movement of
• How has this changed in the last two hundred
The Tropic of Cancer and Capricorn are both
located 23.5 degrees north and south of the
equator. What are they an example of
Native Americans were among the first civilizations
to farm. Before they farmed they would have to move
from place to place in order to get food. Their ability
to adapt to their environment is an example of which
of the five themes of geography?
Which of the following is
not an example of region?
The Great Lakes States
The Soda-pop states
The California state
The New England states
Which of the following
devices does not give you
When they landed on American soil, European
explorers, like Columbus, brought with them slaves,
small-pox, and horses. This is known as the
Columbian exchange and is an example of what?
As you student events and trends in history, you
will often need to think geographically. For practice,
let us see how population trends throughout the
history of the United States relate to the five themes
When the United States won its independence
in 1783, it was made up of 13 states located on the
Atlantic coast (_________). The majority of the
population lived along the coast or near rivers
( ________), where water transportation was easy
(________). The Appalachian Mountains and other
geographic features limited westward movement
(_______). In 1790, the nation’s center of
population was located in Maryland.
• Which geographic theme would be most concerned
with trade among nations?
Unscramble each of the clue words.
Copy the letters in the numbered cells to other cells with the same number.