Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Regions of the Thirteen Colonies Lesson Plan

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Regions of the Thirteen Colonies, and supports the standard of comparing characteristics of New England, Middle, and Southern colonies. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.


Display an image of the thirteen colonies, like this one from the BrainPOP movie (timestamp: 1:01):

Ask students:

  • How do you think a colony’s geography might have impacted life for people living there? 


Step 3: APPLY and ASSESS 

Students take the Building the Thirteen Colonies Challenge and Quiz, applying essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.


Students express what they learned about the regions of the thirteen colonies while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Imagine you’re traveling through the thirteen colonies.Produce a travelog that answers this question: How did geography impact life in different colonies? 
  • Make-a-Map: Make a concept map comparing and contrasting the three regions of the thirteen colonies. 
  • Creative Coding: Code a game challenging players to determine whether information describes the colonies in the New England, Middle, or Southern regions. 

More to Explore

Mission U.S.: For Crown or Colony: Students use what they know about tensions between England and the colonists to take on the role of an apprentice to a newspaper printer in Boston in 1770.

Time Zone X: Causes of the American Revolution: Challenge players to put historical events in chronological order in this interactive timeline game.

Related BrainPOP Topics: Deepen understanding of colonial life with these topics: Building the Thirteen Colonies, Jamestown, Part 1, and Jamestown, Part 2.

Teacher Support Resources:

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments