Lesson Three: Wyoming – Land of Many Uses
Grade Level: 2nd Grade
Time: 45 minutes
Essential Question: How can we be stewards of Wyoming’s public and private lands to benefit current and future generations?
Objective: Students will identify different uses of public and private land by discussing scenarios and observing pictures.
Purpose: Students learn that Wyoming land has multiple uses.
• Terrain Type Photos (one per small group – make duplicate copies of pictures if needed for larger classes) These will be used again in other lessons. Specific information for the attached photos: the mountains are Grand Teton National Park; the water picture is Guernsey State Park; the grassland is Thunder Basin National Grassland; and the forest is Casper Mountain.
• Student Journals OR notebook or printer paper to make Student Journal pages (one per student)
• Drawing paper (optional – one per student. Students can do this in their journal instead of on separate paper if you choose.)
Suggested Teacher Preparation:
• Assign students to small groups.
• Prepare Student Journal pages by typing/writing the following sentence stems on notebook/printer paper OR write the following sentence stems in Student Journals:
• My favorite thing to do outside is ________________________________________________.
• Wyoming is unique because
Social Studies: SS2.5.2 (Explicit)
ELA: 2.SL.1, 2.SL.6 (Practiced/Encountered)
CVE: CV5.4.1 (Practiced/Encountered)
• Forest – a large area of land covered with trees and underbrush
• Grassland – an area of land on which most of the natural plant forms are grasses
• Lake – a body of fresh or salt water of considerable size that is surrounded by land
• Mountain – a raised area of land higher and steeper than a hill
• Recreation – an activity that is undertaken for pleasure or relaxation
• Reservoir – a natural or artificial place where water is collected and stored for use
• River – a large, flowing stream of water (note: creeks and streams are smaller and flow into rivers, but can be used for similar activities)
• Scenery – the view of natural features that are pleasing to look at
• Terrain – the physical features of an area of land
Discussion: Think-pair-share is a strategy for students to share with a partner, so everyone has equal participation.
1. To begin this lesson, the class will play the game Have You Ever? (Source 2). This game will review stewardship and the difference between public lands and private lands as well as introduce how we use public lands. Arrange students in a circle. Say: “To play this game, I will ask if you have ever done some different activities. If you have done the activity, stay standing. If you have never done the activity, sit down. Let’s practice with some examples: If I asked have you ever been to school, we would all stay STANDING because we have all been to school. If I asked have you ever seen a live dinosaur, we would all SIT because none of us have seen a real live dinosaur. Questions?” After students respond to a question, discuss how each question relates to public/private lands and stewardship before moving on to the next one. Play the game.
• Ask: “Have you ever gone down a slide at a park?” Discussion point: Parks are public land that often have slides for all of us to enjoy. Why do we need to be stewards of our parks?
• Ask: “Have you ever gone camping?” Discussion point: Campgrounds can be on public or private lands. How have you shown stewardship while camping?
• Ask: “Have you ever built a fort in your living room?” Discussion point: This is using private land. Your neighbor could not come into your home and use your fort without your permission. If you’re not a steward of your living room, could you enjoy building forts?
• Ask: “Have you ever ridden an escalator to the tenth floor of a store?” Discussion point: In Wyoming, the stores are usually not built to the tenth floor. Perhaps there is an elevator but not an escalator. There are rules to follow when riding an escalator. How can you be a steward while visiting these places?
• Ask: “Have you ever gone fishing?” Discussion point: In Wyoming, we have many lakes, rivers, and reservoirs where we can all fish. There are rules you have to follow on both public and private land when fishing. If we’re not following these rules, we are not being stewards.
• Ask: “Have you ever ridden on a gondola at a ski resort?” Discussion point: In Wyoming, there is only one public location with a gondola. Unless you have gone skiing in Jackson Hole, you may or may not have done this activity in our state. How can you be a steward of public places you may visit as a tourist?
• Ask: “Have you ever run through a sprinkler in your yard?” Discussion point: This is using private land. Friends would have to ask permission to run through your sprinkler. How could you be a steward of your backyard, so you can enjoy running through the sprinkler? How can you be a steward of water?
2. Say: “We just talked about some activities people enjoy in Wyoming … to fish, camp, and play. Now we are going to learn even more ways we use the land.” Divide students into groups. Give each small group one Terrain Type photo and pass out their Student Journals or a piece of notebook paper for students’ journals. Have students respond to the following prompt: “What are some uses or things you can do on this land?” Have students make a list in their own journals. In their groups, give students five minutes to take turns sharing what uses/activities they brainstormed. After the five minutes are up, have groups share their pictures and uses of the land with the whole class.
3. Say: “Wyoming has different types of terrain located within our state. It allows us to do many fun things in our state, and many tourists come here from other places to enjoy the scenery and recreation opportunities. In our next lesson, we will be learning more about Wyoming’s terrain.” Close by reviewing the different types of terrain and ways we use the land in Wyoming. Say: “We are so lucky to live in a state where we can go outside and enjoy so many different activities!Take a minute and think about which of these activities you enjoy.” Have students generate a picture of terrain either in their journals or on separate pieces of printer paper if you’d like to display them. When students are finished making their pictures, have students switch pictures with a partner and discuss what activities could occur on that terrain and how stewardship could impact those activities.
Assessment: As an assessment/check for understanding, have students either write and/or draw in their journal a response to the following prompts:
My favorite thing to do outside is ________________________________________________.
Wyoming is unique because ______________________________________.
Review responses to ensure that students are answering correctly.
1. Reading Rocket: WETA. (2018). Think-Pair-Share. Retrieved August 22, 2018, from http://www.readingrockets.org/strategies/think-pair-share
2. Neill, James. (2005, December 8). Have You Ever? Retrieved August 22, 2018, from http://www.wilderdom.com/games/descriptions/HaveYouEver.html
3. Photo credits are cited on the Terrain Type photos.