Submitted by: George Haines

Grade Levels: 3-5

In this lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades 3-5, students use BrainPOP resources to distinguish between the three types of environments (rural, urban and suburban). They will also connect with students in other schools and other countries, and build their own wiki with embedded photos.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Learn to distinguish between the three types of environments (rural, urban and suburban).
  2. Connect with students in other schools and other countries.
  3. Build their own wiki, embed photos, and learn from other student-created content.


  • Computer with internet access for BrainPOP Jr., Wikispaces, and Flickr
  • Digital camera/phone


rural; urban; suburban; population


The first step is to connect with teachers in different environments via social media. This project should involve a class from a rural area, a class from a suburban area, and a class from an urban area.

Once the collaborators are on-board and the plan is set, it is time to send the letter home to parents asking them to help their child take a picture of the environment where they live. Parents can then e-mail the picture to the teacher by a predetermined deadline. This is a great way to involve parents in the educational process that does not involve anything overly technical. With their parents, students will take a picture that best exemplifies what their environment looks like. Pictures will be e-mailed to their technology teacher for use in class.

Once the teacher receives the pictures, the next step is to upload them to Flickr (or any site that allows sharing and embedding of pictures. The teacher must also create a wiki and share it with the collaborators in the other schools.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Watch the Rural, Urban, Suburban movie on BrainPOP Jr. Pause to discuss important information as the video progresses.
  2. When the video is finished, have students work independently on the Easy Quiz.
  3. After the quiz is finished and the class discusses the answers, each student will draw a picture of each different environment using the Draw About It feature.
  4. Students will log-in to the wiki. Each student will create their own page and write one paragraph describing how their environment looks and sounds.
  5. Students will then go to the Flickr page and copy the embed code for their picture and then paste the picture next to their description on the wiki.
  6. Once the students save their work and their page is complete, they will explore the wiki and discuss and share what they see on the other schools' pages.