In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 3-12, students explore BrainPOP resources to learn about the three regions that the original 13 colonies made up: New England, Middle, and Southern. Using what they learn about the regions and its colonies, students play a “Guess the Region” game with a partner. 


Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Brainstorm what they know about the colonies and their regions.
  2. Complete a concept map to identify characteristics of one colony.
  3. Play a guessing game about the colonies with a partner.



Lesson Procedure:

  1. Ask students what they know about the 13 colonies. This could include anything: climate, economy, culture, populations, etc. Depending on how much they know, you may take this deeper by asking what colonies they think were in each of the three regions: New England, Southern Colonies, and Middle Colonies.
  2. Tell students that today they will learn all about the three regions formed by the thirteen colonies, including the geography of each, views on slavery, origin of the settlers, and more. Read aloud, or have a volunteer read the summary that appears under the player.
  3. Show the movie Regions of the Thirteen Colonies on an interactive whiteboard or other large display for the whole class once through without pausing.
  4. Now have students open the Make-a-Map feature within the movie and chose the Structure Map template. Alternatively, you can distribute the Web Graphic Organizer.  As they watch the movie independently, have them choose one of the three colonial regions, and instruct them to fill in the map with facts about their chosen region. You can model, if necessary, by giving a few facts for one of regions, such as warm climate, rich soil, cash crops. Explain that they will use the facts they identify to play a guessing game, so the more obscure the more challenging the game.   
  5. To play the game, try to pair students who chose two different regions (if you have this information, but remember they are to keep it secret from each other). Tell students the goal of the game is to figure out their partner’s region by asking questions about it, such as “What is the land like in your region?” and “What is the climate?” They should continue asking questions until they identify their partner’s region.
  6. When both have guessed correctly, and if time allows, have students play with another partner.
  7. If you have an individual teacher accounts, enhance this game by having your students use Make-a-Movie to create a movie about their region (remember, don’t reveal the region!). Have pairs swap movies and make their guesses.
  8. Conclude the lesson by having students take the Regions of the Thirteen Colonies quiz to assess their understanding.